F*ck being conventional


Experimentality is my corner of the Internet, my journal where I share everything it is taking me to build a bold and solid business.

Hello Hello,Β 
Wassup, How are you?

I have a story for you today. πŸ˜€

Just before that, I am looking for a superstar college kid with great coding skills in Javascript β€” nodejs and reactjs to build micro saas. If you are one or know anybody, drop me a note with proof of work at [email protected].

Now, back to the story. πŸ‘‡πŸ»

F*ck Being Conventional

Let's rewind to the year 2020, smack in the middle of the COVID pandemic. I was running a company called Quarks, specializing in creating educational content for big players in the ed-tech world like Upgrad, Unacademy, Embibe, Byjus, Vedantu, and more. Our clients threw all sorts of requests at us – things like crafting 1000 mind-boggling physics questions for 12th-grade CBSE students. It was a demanding gig, no doubt.

My agency had two sides to it. First, there was the exciting world of closing deals and making sales – my strong suit. On the flip side, there was the day-to-day grind of managing operations, a part I genuinely loathed. Since I was a one-man show, I had to juggle freelancers, vendors, and mountains of content. The work itself wasn't hard, but the sheer volume was enough to drive anyone a bit bonkers.

The money was flowing in, thanks to my knack for sealing deals and my industry connections. But the content delivery side was becoming a nightmare. Some eagle-eyed content managers from our clients would spot errors in the tiniest details, like finding ten mistakes in a batch of 1,000 to 10,000 questions. Me? I'm a bit lazy, and I've got a touch of ego, so I wasn't thrilled about this repetitive work or the occasional tongue-lashing from a random content manager.

It was clear as day – if I wanted to keep the business afloat, I had to hand over the delivery part to someone else, and fast. So, I started asking around if anyone would be interested in tackling that beast. Most people turned me down flat.

But then, something unexpected happened. A smart fellow who was helping me translate content from English to Hindi (using good ol' Google Translate and copy-paste) agreed to take on the project management side of things. He had a knack for getting stuff done and had his sights set on projects worth 7-8 lakhs per month.

I was cautious, naturally. What if he went rogue and talked to clients without me? What if he messed things up royally? But desperate times call for desperate measures, so I took a chance. There was just one condition – he could never discuss money with our clients. He nodded in agreement, and we were off to the races.

We settled on the prices, ironed out the scope of work, and hit the ground running. About a month into our partnership, he reached out to me in a tight spot, needing a loan of 2 lakhs due to a personal crisis. He had no other options, so he offered to work on projects until he could pay me back.

Here's the twist – my upbringing had made me a tad skeptical in a world where trust can be scarce. The sensible thing would've been to say no. What if he vanished into thin air, never to return my money? We were in the middle of a pandemic, he lived somewhere in Punjab, and I was chilling in Bangalore, miles away. I'd be powerless if he decided to pull a disappearing act.

But here's the kicker – in just two hours, I transferred that money without hesitation. And believe you me, my life took a turn for the better. Over the next three years, he handled projects worth a whopping 1.5 crore rupees, taking care of everything from finding freelancers to creating those oh-so-crucial tracker sheets, dealing with clients, and delivering the content – all while I relaxed, stress-free.

Now, I'm not swimming in riches, but I've got some smarts and a decent financial backing. This experience taught me that not everyone enjoys those privileges. People have bills to pay and responsibilities to meet, and the pressure is real. So, from that moment on, I made a bold decision – I'd never haggle over money with anyone I hired or worked with. Our salaries would be prepaid, meaning I'd pay up even before they started working.

Fast forward to a recent project where I hired a talented designer. I popped the question, "How much do you charge?" She replied with a cool 20k, right within my budget. So, I asked her, "Why 20k?" She said, "That's what JD mentioned." Then, I threw her a curveball, "What amount would make you happy?" She grinned and said, "30k." I didn't hesitate and handed her that 30k upfront, with more work to come.

So, here's my golden rule now: never negotiate on price or salary. Trust people with money, and you'll be amazed by their loyalty and work ethic. Be kind – it's the unconventional secret to a thriving business. 😊

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