“Be crazy and don’t seek too much advice on what you propose to do,” this is the mantra that Michael Dell, the man who founded the world’s third largest PC making company — Dell — has given to budding entrepreneurs in India for becoming successful.
“…entrepreneurs I think have to be a little bit crazy, at least in the eyes of others,” Dell, who is also the CEO of the company, said.
Successful entrepreneurs will be those who venture to do what others will not; if it’s “obvious,” everyone would do it, he said in an interaction here, hosted by IT industry body Nasscom with hundreds of start-ups in attendance, late last evening.
He said he never sought lot of advice because if he had gone and asked people what he was about to do and work, they would have told him it wouldn’t work and dissuaded him from taking up the venture.
“I would experiment experiment, test, go fast, fail fast. Planning is fine but generally over-rated,” said Dell, who founded the company as a student.
He said these are exciting times for entrepreneurs as most of the growth in the global economies is occurring in small and medium-sized businesses.
“And one of the reasons for that is those businesses are getting access to tools, technology that used to be only available to big businesses.”
Most of the employment and innovation is also happening in the SMB space, which is also the largest market in the world, he said adding that it is “great time to be entrepreneur.”
On the company’s experience of doing business in India, he said it has been growing quite rapidly but remarked: “Market like India tends to be fairly dynamic and somewhat volatile. Generally in upward direction.” Like some other markets, one has to be ready for significant down-drags.
“On any given day, it’s fantastic or really difficult”. “(In India for Dell)..it’s like three steps forward, one step backward; two steps forward, four steps backward; three steps forward, one step backward, four steps forward, two steps backward. But basically, it’s going in upward direction”.
But he said India is blessed with amazing amounts of talent that he called “natural resource”. For Dell, it’s an incredibly important market and continues to be so.
In the last two years, Dell’s R&D talent in India has doubled in size, growing to “several thousands now,” including from acquired companies that had sites in this country, Dell added.