Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Spreading the message

A somewhat different post this time ..... perhaps a harbinger of things to come.

1) A quick update - I have returned to Hong Kong. Am not sure of next steps yet but have a few things that will keep me busy till June. Will try and blog now and then (many blog ideas that I have not converted into posts, and some new ones).

2) Been wanting to share photographs of my mobile bill board.
Now you do see a few more of this type of truck in India but it still draws looks. I figured that I ought to use that to my advantage and put up some messages that are important to me.
The messages.
a) Equal rights and dignity to all. The core of the U.N. charter and something that I firmly believe will lead to a better world if taken on as a tenet.
b) Empower Entrepreneurs. This is central to my notion that there is a lot of unnecessary friction in the "system". Entrepreneurs should succeed or fail based on their abilities and not due to the "system".
c) Empower Women. (At least in India) we are missing out on the power of women. Not just in the human capital aspect. Also in the leverage factor - in that (at least in some socio-economic strata) when women are earning the chances that their children will have access to more education and nutritious food is higher than otherwise.
d) "Our soldiers died for us - respect them by being better citizens". There are no doubt folks in India who think I am overly critical of India. I try and explain that we should learn to take warranted criticism - and why it burns me up so much when I see wrong done (because I actually care!). In India, we are not allowed to fly the national flag from vehicles or wear flags etc. because the government believes that it would show disrespect to the many who have laid down their lives for the flag. Yet, we insult those dead in so many other ways.
e) Speaking of flags - designed ones that showed my Indian and Swiss heritage and put them up in a few places.

(Confession. I also had the truck modified a bit. It has a bit of a growl now with a modified exhaust, a power chip that makes driving in hills fun, and four extra shock absorbers to limit the roll on curves. Boys, as they say, will be boys.)

Stay well. Stay true.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

On making a pitch

I subscribe to a blog called Venkat's Expressions and came across his post on Pitching. While a good post, given that I have seen a few pitches and hold some views on them I thought I would add to his post (which is here http://carvk.com/2014/01/17/10-factors-for-a-perfect-pitch/).

Overall Venkat's list does indeed capture most of the key aspects of a Pitch. I would be surprised however if folks said all that in 3 minutes never mind in a 1 minute elevator pitch - or if folks could understand it if they did. ;)
You should choose elements from and/or tailor the list for 1 min, 3 min and 10 min pitches.
In my view, the list is missing three key elements - delivery, ability to handle questions, audience.

When I say delivery I mean how you are dressed, body language, enunciation etc. Some steps to take in this regard are first to practice in front of a mirror and then to pitch to friends. Practice does make perfect.
To handle questions well you need to dream up questions (ask people you think are not very smart to ask you questions) and find good answers to them (not-so-smart people should be able to understand them). Not saying investors or clients or potential partners are not smart - just that by working hard at it you will find good, simple, direct answers to important questions ("stupid" people sometimes ask the best questions!).
Audience - pitches are not just to investors but also to potential partners and customers. Tailor your pitch accordingly.

One of my shortest posts so far!

Been meaning to post a longer, more personal blog for a few weeks now. Working up the courage (it will show my vulnerabilities) to do so but will do it so long as I think it may help others in similar situations. That is the wonderful thing about doing things for pure reasons - you do not have the same "I must impress people" concerns, only, whether a message may be of use or not!

Stay well. Stay true.