Bootstrap Hyderabad September Get-together – Ideas, learning and lots of fun

It was an eventful evening. A series of small events triggered by a call from Vijay to Rajat, made sure that all bootstrappers were able to meet successfully for an interesting round of discussion at Café Coffee Day, Jubilee Hills.

Our designated venue for the meet-up – Barista Coffee at Jubilee Hills was closed for renovation without any prior notice. With the information from Vijay and Rajat, I managed to communicate this to all but Gaurav Trikha and Shoumitro Goswami. Gaurav is a friend who landed in Hyderabad few months back to head quality practice at Satyam and Shoumitro is fellow bootstrapper and founder of Bootstrap Bangalore.

In all, 12 bootstrappers (Amit Thakral, Anand Morzaria, Ritesh Prasad, Shiv Mangesh, Vijay Yalamanchili, RK Dhanvada, Rajiv Fernando, Rajat Gupta, Tarun Jain, Vishal Tangirala, Siva Prasad, Mallayya TV and yours truly) were there.

The meet up kick-started with an interesting round of introduction where everybody who was introducing himself had to recall and tell the names of the person who have already introduced themselves.

After introduction, Global Bootstrap Community was soft launched. The idea behind creation of the community is to make linking with fellow bootstrappers across the world, real easy. It is similar to Linked in and other professional networking platforms and caters to the networking needs of bootstrapped entrepreneurs. For starters, Hyderabad bootstrappers may create their profiles at community portal.

During the discussion, Ritesh came up with a query about posting permissions on Bootstrap yahoo groups. Currently, all members can post to the group. This is the scenario till the time we move the dialogue to Bootstrap community portal.

RK was all praises for the book “Leaving Microsoft to Change the World” by John Wood. Through the book Wood, one time marketing director at Microsoft shares his journey from an all-consuming corporate career to starting RoomtoRead, a non-profit organization.

Since its inception in 2000, Room to Read has impacted the lives of over 990,000 children by:

  1. Constructing 197 schools
  2. Establishing over 2,930 libraries
  3. Publishing 77 new local language children’s titles representing over 690,000 books
  4. Donating over 1.2 million English language children’s books
  5. Funding 2,079 long-terms girls’ scholarships
  6. Establishing 92 computer and language labs

    The above data is from RoomtoRead website.

I really liked this sentence from the review at Amazon –

Stressed from the demands of his job, he took a vacation trekking in Nepal because a friend had told him, “If you get high enough in the mountains, you can’t hear Steve Ballmer yelling at you anymore.”

Amit shared his love for trekking (Amit any plans like John?), his current responsibilities at PennyWise and his business development strategies. Others chipped in with their ideas and praise for the work Pennywise is doing.

Vishal suggested creating a space to showcase the expertise and strength of community. This idea was well taken and it was proposed that everybody will write a small story describing the journey of there lives so far. Major focus will be on sharing the major challenges and victories on the road of life.

Tarun Jain talked briefly about his educational and entrepreneurial travails.

Siva Mangesh who works with CapitalIQ shared his entrepreneurial ambitions with fellow bootstrappers.

I shared my earlier brush with entrepreneurship and future plans (startup and all).

Ritesh said that it was his first interaction with fellow bootstrappers and he will look forward to further interactions in future. He shared that the meeting was his chance to put faces to the names. He was especially happy to see Rajat whose writing he really likes.

Rajiv shared his inclination towards writing and his tryst with research in various domains at work. Rajiv is an entrepreneur-in-making. He has also created a multimedia case study on Share Micro Finance.

Shiv was all ears for ideas. I was happy to see him twice in one month as he is currently based at Bangalore. Our first meeting this month, happened at Blogcamp.

Anand talked about his bruises (clients defaulting on payments) and victories (the growth of PennyWise Solutions from a one man start-up to 60 employee company – serving more than 120 clients – on track for bigger things) on the road of entrepreneurship.

He shared that one should give his 100% focus to the enterprise. It can not be a side gig; – it should be the core focus of entrepreneur’s life. Initially one may have fewer resources but they will come if one sticks to the task.

He further suggested that bootstrappers should get value out of the activity of the community then only they will stick to it.

I liked when Anand proactively offered a lead to RK. Hopefully this small start will lead to future collaborations.

RK proposed PennyWise solutions as the venue of next Bootstrap meeting which Team Pennywise (Anand, Amit and Ritesh) heartily accepted. This gesture is deeply appreciated.

So, the October get-together of Bootstrap Hyderabad will as per following schedule;

When: October 15, 2006 (Sunday) [6.00 – 7.30 pm]
Where: PennyWise Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
6-3-655/4, Civil Supplies Bhawan Lane
Somajiguda, Hyderabad – 500 482

Some of us stayed back for offline discussions after get-together was over.

Enough said, it was day to remember in midst of unexpected Hyderabad rains. I am looking forward to more such interactions.

Cheers.