The budding and upcoming entrepreneurs in this room would be shocked to know that in our own land we require 70 odd clearances to start a business, we have to file over 100 returns in a year and follow a maze of 50+ labour laws – most of which were made when your grandparents were born… some that were made when their grandparents were born.
This system is broken and it is breaking the back of Indian entrepreneurs. We accept it as a part of our culture but is that what was envisioned by the forefathers of our constitution that the fight they lead to give us freedom and self-governance has come back to drown the voice and expectations of a young India. We have gone from the land of a billion opportunities to a hole of a trillion “offo”-rtunities.
Offo-rtunity… how apt that word is for our predicament today. But does it need to stay that way? Can we change?
What brought me back to India after over a decade abroad is the fact that India has grown at tremendous rate for over two decades by a people that are so shackled by its system – a system created during the Nehruvian scarcity & socialist economics of the 1950’s through the late 1960’s that the growth itself is awe-inspiring.
So I imagined, what would happen if those shackles were removed? We would be unbeatable! The very Indians that cannot eke out a living in their own land go on to do tremendous work outside the country. If we offer them that system here, we can literally change the world within and outside our borders!
The fight to unshackle us is not going to be easy but nothing that comes easy is worth anything anyways. This fight requires you and everyone you can influence to change their very attitude towards mediocrity. it isn’t acceptable and cannot be acceptable in any form whether it comes from the government or the private sector.
If we want to provide world-class service to the world then that service has to first be given to us, isn’t it? If we want to make the “Made in India” brand the brand that signifies quality and trust… then shouldn’t we be the first adopters of that brand and work out the kinks before the world sees them? Why should our best commodities, products and services only be built for exports? Who will test them and ensure that they can stand toe to toe with global brands?
It is an observed practice followed by our successful Asian neighbours where the established companies nurture the younger companies and work with them to make them globally competitive. The people in those countries take the products and services made by their companies very seriously and refuse to accept sub-standard products – that is how their economies have produced innovative yet stable product lines.
So let’s copy that attitude and apply it to our companies. The next time you receive shoddy service or a DOA product, make it a point to protect your rights and ensure that the company not only rectifies the error, it makes it a policy to ensure that those errors aren’t repeated. If you don’t get the protection of your rights go to the consumer protection forums through online mediums which get you almost instant results.