‘Not just run after valuations and profitability’
The first edition of the India Startup festival 22 got off to an encouraging start at Sri Satya Sai Grama, Muddenahalli, with participation from over 500 plus startups, 75 plus investors and plethora of CEOs across the country.
Giving a clarion call to startups, Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai, founder of Sri Sathya Sai University for Human excellence, Karnataka urged startups to not just run behind valuations and chase funding but to strongly imbibe a culture of ethics, morals and more importantly build trust.
‘Many of today’s startups are just fascinated by the high-flying lifestyle of bay area founders thereby solely motivated by money and not by ethics. This needs to change’ said Sadguru Sri Sai, giving the inaugural address at the India Startup festival (ISF) 2022.
Stating that though plethora of startups have raised huge sums of money and have gone on to become unicorns and soonicorns but said that Dharma was missing in many of them. This he noted was resulting in firing of many employees thereby lowering the morale of employees.
After a series of quick promotions and salary hikes he is one fine day told to leave’ this doesn’t go down well with the employee who has many liabilities. Instant gratification is destroying good companies and good management opined Sadguru Sri Sai.
He thus advocated startups to have patience, be in it for the long term and to build trust.
‘The most important ingredient is trust for startups. This is because you are new and need people to trust you’ said Sadguru Sri Sai and added that entrepreneurship is never about making money but proving an idea or solving a problem.
‘Money will follow if you are doing things in the right way’.
He cited the example of Infosys and their founders for running a compassionate and ethically strong company.
Sadguru Sri Sai similarly advised startups to not get discouraged by failure and preached that any failure is not real failure if it has an honest intention.
‘When we enter into anything new there is a 50-50 chance. We therefore have to enter with this realisation in mind’ he said and urged startups to focus on finding effective solutions to real problems and creating overall value to both society and business.
Envisioning a developed India wherein all would have access to education, healthcare and food Sadguru Sri Sai said that a large part of the onus laid on affluent people ‘The haves have the responsibility to provide opportunities to the have nots so to help them come up’.
Concurred Mr JA Chowdary, a renowned technocrat and the chief architect of the ISF 2022 and called for creating an ISF India Impact fund to fund startups addressing the problems of rural India.
The two-day startup Festival encompassed a knowledge-packed program with themed exhibitions, Round Table discussions in critical areas like Women Empowerment, Fintech, Education, Rural Health and nutrition and Bharat 2.0.