7+7 = 14
Contributed by: Akshai Abraham
Dated: 10th February, 2013
7 months. 7 partners. 14 thoughts to share on the crazy ride of entrepreneurship – from the security of a full-time, well-paying job to the daily dose of questions in self-belief, self-esteem and whether I’m making good choices with my life
- From the frustration of having to change the name (twice) and address while registering the Society; to the (hollow?) victory of registering without paying a bribe
- From total disappointment trying to get funds to start (with just a concept); to the joy of starting with own funds and part-time coordinators
- From zero funds; to enough funds to hire full-time team members with salaries secured for a year
- From wading through 200+ CVs, wondering where to find good people; to having two full-time coordinators and a host of interns/ part-timers/ volunteers all eager working together towards a better future for the children
- From two months of running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to organize an event; to the (tired) satisfaction of having organized one of the best events in the city (and actually managing to have raised funds at the end of it!)
- From randomly doing stuff in the first few sessions; to carefully planned and documented sessions with sports and life-skills components.
- From the not-so-enthusiastic and sometimes skeptical family; to the super-enthu and supportive family – without whom half of this would never have happened.
- From working from home and coffee shops; to working from a tiny office we can call our own (thanks to a generous supporter who gave us space)
- From the continued disappointment of trying to raise funds from big corporates and funders; to so many bits of encouragement from each of the small contributions of our supporters, each like on facebook, each appreciative comment
- From the doubting thomases (“you left your job and are going to do… what?”, “what will you do with no income?”); to the doubting thomases (“you work with 500 children each week?”, “your tiny team does so much?”)
- From the lows of “Am I actually making a difference?”; to the highs of awards and competition successes.
- From the many challenges of working with freshers in their first jobs; to the privilege of working with a young team of people whose hearts are in the right place.
- From the introverted I-prefer-being-with-dogs-more-than-people-person; to the (still reluctant) promoter, presenter and shameless-fund-seeker for the cause.
- From the crazy 14+ hour workdays looking after operations, HR, admin, finance, fund raising, evaluation, PR and fighting new fires each day; to the smiling faces at our sessions that makes all of it worthwhile