Archive for April, 2012

Real stories of Startup Failure

Readwriteweb has a review of The Founder’s Dilemmas: Anticipating and Avoiding the Pitfalls That Can Sink a Startup cover.

Based on extensive research of 10,000 startup founders, this book draws upon the reasons of successes and failures. Top reasons for failure – people issues, equity issues, and investor relations. Seems like a promising read.

India Expansion – Acquire & Manage Culture not just the Business

In recent months I have had the great opportunity to work  with organisations from around the world who have expanded their global footprint  through Joint Ventures/strategic Buyouts or Acquisitions.  I am happy to share, based on my experiences, some of the key elements/experiences which are important steps in business success in these types of situations . These are  indicative and not an exhaustive reflection of my experience.

- Managing Business & People independently : Many businesses identify a business leader or a senior operational director to run the operations(Hired locally or deployed from home country). However, they tend to leave thepeople part of the business decisions to be  handled by the home country HR professionals.  This makes the proposition very difficult. Firstly the Host country manager would focus on running and stabilizing business results while the HR of Home country struggle to understand the nuances of Indian business and its complexities related to people.

They face difficult situations in understanding and comprehending the Compensation Bench marking, hiring practices & success, Performance expectations Vs. Output etc.,

- Right Person but Wrong Job: Rightly many organisations deploy an Imported Indian(Indian side) to run the business when they acquire a stake in or a business in India. Many times the appointed person would have not run a business in India before  or even, in some cases,  not even run a business or business unit  in the home country. Many who work outside India may not be able to appreciate the way things transact in India and have limited ability to  add value to the Indian business  in current situations. This presents a significant challenge for this Manager deployed in India to run the business.  In the current Indian business scenario  the sooner the person comes to terms with situations and can impart information to help  top management appreciate the complexities of the  way forward the sooner he and the business can  be successful.

- My Business My Way : Many organisations would like to run their business the way it was run in their home countries.  They may be successful in their business the way they are in that country.

However, the Indian context is very different and the need for adaptation to the Indian business and  cultural impacts may be very very high, if the business is to be  successful. The entire ecosystem of business runs the way the India Culture has been imbibed into the business over 100′s of years.  The successful businesses have been the ones who adapted to the culture of India and conducted their  business around their single product or service  differentiator that is their unique value.

Prepare to Conquer:  It is helpful for the business  to look at some of the above issues  in their strategic and preparation planning and create a clear cut orientation and expectation setting practice  from the business point of view to help build a more realistic frame of reference.  . A clear understanding about the business audit from a cultural perspective (apart from the accounting,business) before even venturing to partner/acquire/buy/invest would help.  The Culturally  audit through of  the people practices, business practices  and  behaviors toward business and the preparedness for next level of expectations and delivery would provide a much more realistic approach to the market.

Have a great year ahead !!!

Feel free to comment or write to me at gr@husys.net