The secret behind the aversion of IITians to start ups!
The IIT tag itself speaks a lot! You say you are an IITian and the world will surely turn back! So, yes I agree that all the IITs produce innovative stuff but I have to say that IIT Delhi tops the list and is the most entrepreneurial of all IITs. Many of you might not agree but I can easily prove my point. The founders of various eminent names like the Flipkart, Zomato and Yebhi are all IIT Delhi alumni. The awesome actor featuring in the mentos advertisement who wears a watermelon as a helmet is also an IITian. And you need more proofs? Some students of IIT Delhi have even directed and produced a movie! So the question that arises now is pretty simple- what separates them from the rest. Why did they decide to do something different while others didn’t.
We try to search for an answer to this question. For this we will have to get an idea of the background of IIT students. If you visit any IIT, you are sure to find most of the students who have been toppers in their school days. No doubt, it is good to be a topper but it has a major drawback. The toppers haven’t faced failure ever in their lives and so are not aware how to face one. Society has always seen them as impeccable machines and entrance into the IITs strengthens that belief. Contrary to this, a startup is actually designed to fail, though there are some exceptions where the startups emerge to be quite successful. So, since there is inherent risk, most of the IITians prefer high paying corporate jobs rather than these startups because they actually don’t know how exactly they will deal with their failure.
Another notion that prevails in the campus is that getting a high paying job in an investment bank or a consulting company or making it to IIMs is considered to be very good. Hence, if a person joins some startup it is assumed that he was left with no other option and so he had to accept this. As a matter of fact, the Bansals of Flipkart weren’t toppers of their department in IIT Delhi. Then what was it that stopped the elite ones of the Computer Science department from starting something like Flipkart? Obviously, they would also have been equally good if not better than the Bansals. The only reason was that Bansals were not afraid of facing any kind of failure. They were focused and had an aim. They kept on working for it and building what is India’s largest eCommerce company and they seem to have no sign of stopping.
And when some people who are capable of taking risk of joining a startup succeed, people start feeling jealous of them. Guys, nobody is stopping you! Have the ability of taking risk and opt for a startup. You just need to have faith in yourself. Life is a race and success and failure are its two indispensable phases.
This post was published by Aditya Singhal, co-founder of askIITians.