Successful small business is better than a startup
Rajat’s first startup had failed. Then he launched Get Set Resumes (GSR). He is running it successfully today. #
I asked Rajat what had encouraged him to become an entrepreneur?
He answered, “Doing business is in my blood. I was sick of my job. I did not like how bosses micro-managed. Internet sector was booming. Flipkart, Foodie Bay (now Zomato) were coming up. I thought now is the time (before marriage, kids, etc.). I wanted to do something.”
Get Set Resumes is a Noida based small business. It offers high-quality resume writing service. It also offers professional writing services such as websites. It focusses on businesses and professionals. He has been running it for eight years.
In 2009 Rajat and his two friends were toying with online business ideas. They started Interview Elements, an online resource for helping college students. The content was about cracking interviews. It also offered a free resume building service. The website brought them money through Google Adsense.
After Interview Elements, Rajat wanted to do a startup. He founded Living Room Canvas. It was a marketplace for all things art. He quit his job in February 2011, to focus on his startup. He was passionate about the startup. Therefore, he did not pursue management. He let go of admission in two of India’s top management schools.
I asked Rajat What is the single most important thing for becoming an entrepreneur?
He said, “Perseverance”.
His startup Living Room Canvas, was losing money. Lack of support services such as logistics, packaging, and payments, was not helping. They needed money. Rajat and his co-founder launched a paid resume writing service. Few orders had poured in, and some money. Rajat had realized that the startup would not survive. So, he decided to focus on resume writing. He called it Get Set Resumes. He gave himself six months. His last resort was to go back to the job market.
Failure did not deter Rajat. He did not give up. Instead, he learned from past mistakes. Get Set Resume filled a niche gap. GSR provided better customer care, competitive rates, and quicker turnaround time. In 2012 he set up his first office. He started with two desks. In the beginning, it was retail clients. Then he secured his first business client. Now the bulk of his business is from business clients.
He has not stopped being the startup guy. In the past few years, he has launched two new products. First one is Rocket Resume Builder. It is a mobile application for building resumes. The second one is Resumemod. It is a free resume building application for college students, focussing on tier 2 and tier 3 towns.
I asked him what are the three things that he practices every day to grow his business?
He said, “I focus on people a lot — make everyone comfortable in the office, because they are the guys who will run everything. I read a lot. I am a voracious reader. Take calculated risks every now and then (not a daily routine though).”
I asked him about his favorite entrepreneur. What does he admire the most about him/her?
He admires Bill Gates. He said, “The way he copied stuff from Xerox, spread windows in Asia, overtook Apple to build Microsoft as the most dominant technology company. He was not just a great technologist, but he had real business acumen.”
Get Set Resumes is a sustainable business today. It has built more than 250,000 resumes. Just last month, they built 1253 resumes. The basic resume starts at INR 1800. GSR has served clients from 31 countries. Average resume rating is 9.7 out of 10. Annual revenue is more than INR 1cr. It is profitable with more than ten employees.
I asked him if he prefers being a small business owner or a startup?
He said, “ Small business owner. I started up 8 years ago. That phase is over.”
I asked him about his favorite books and music.
He said,” I am more of a fiction guy. I like page turners. But in terms of nonfiction here are my top 3 — Chanakya Neeti, Zero to One (Peter Theil), Art of War (Sun Tzu)”.
"I listen to anything depending on mood. From Jagjit Singh to Pink Floyd, Kishore Kumar to Def Leppard.”, he said about the music.
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