Setting an office

Setting an office

Startups spend a lot of time on zeroing on an office for their team. I went through a similar experience while looking for space for Nurture Talent Academy. Let me share my views and experiences.

Tentative requirements

In India, most of the commercial office search happens via brokers, and it is very easy to get off-targets when it comes to budgets. A measure of space requirement is average 40 sqft per person and charges can range from `30-100 per sqft. In addition to rent, also note that there are always expenses like deposit, brokerage, notary charges, photocopy, and monthly expenses are about 1.5 times the rent including maid, electricity, maintenance, mobile, internet, etc. You may have to buy a new printer, table, chair, LAN cabling, spike guard, etc, too.

Locate your customer

We had been spending more than half of our productive time on running from one meeting to another. So, we decided to take an office in Delhi, which is near to our customers, inside a district centre and is also close to the airport so that we can travel across India at short notices.

Team comfort

Your team expects and demands basic hygiene, which may include comfortable chairs, easy commute to office (near a metro station is best in Delhi), eateries nearby, et al. A secluded work environment is a strict no. Our work demands extra hours, and it is important to have a soothing work ambience. A deciding factor for us was quality toilets.

Negotiate hard

All brokers will start with as high a rent as possible, and will say they are doing a favour by getting you a better deal — you know best as what to believe. Negotiate hard and walk out if not comfortable. Don’t agree for unreasonable lock-in clauses or advance PDC cheques.

Provide amenities

Internet connection, parking space, water cooler, AC, etc, are no longer amenities but have become necessities in a business now. Initially in my office, I played the role of an administrator and peon, bringing stuff which would make our team work better.

Article originally published :

AIESEC Mumbai signs up with Nurture Talent Academy as Youth Partner

AIESEC Mumbai today announced their association with Nurture Talent Academy, India’s 1st institute for training entrepreneurs. As a part of the relationship, both organizations will jointly promote programs on entrepreneurship, technology and business and give a greater exposure to the young students of the country.

Bhakti Soni, Media Relations Manager of AIESEC Mumbai, spoke at the occasion, “We are glad to have Nurture Talent as our Youth Partner. AIESEC Mumbai aims to bring the best of people together to guide our young members and I am sure Nurture Talent can play an important role to shape their minds.”

Amit Grover, CEO of Nurture Talent Academy expressed his happiness on the occasion. “We are committed to build an ecosystem for students benefit in India. With the global exposure that AIESEC Mumbai provides to its members, we will add value by showcasing and promoting the activities of the group across the world.”

As a part of the program, Nurture Talent will also conduct workshops, online sessions, mentor students, and provide education software to members of AIESEC Mumbai. The objective is to enrich the young members’ experience and provide a path to greater success in career and entrepreneurship.

About AIESEC Mumbai

Present in over 110 countries and territories and with over 60,000 members, AIESEC is the world’s largest youth-run organization. Focused on providing a platform for youth leadership development, facilitating international internships within our network of 110 countries, AIESEC offers young people the opportunity to be global citizens to change the world and to get experience and skills that matter today.


Bhakti Soni :

10 things every MBA should learn

Yes, there are so many articles with headlines that speak, “10 strategies…”, “5 tools…”, “101 ways…” and end up being general instructions on management. But this is different – I have been in corporate jobs for 7 years and as an entrepreneur for 2+ years, and I wish to share what I really feel are life-savers for an MBA on a daily basis. Here is my list:

1. Learn MS Excel

Yes, Excel is the most underrated tool in the history of software. There are basics you should be aware of like formats, formula and advance areas like graphs, vlookup, pivot table and macros. All this will help you whether you work for others or for yourself!

2. Learn to take a print out

Often in your daily activity, you will have to take print outs. And it will be embarrassing to hear (plus time wasting) – “Oh, you don’t know how to take a print out or install a printer?”

3. Operate a photocopy machine

Photocopy machine operators are the people who go missing when you need them! Best is to learn the basics of operating a photocopier – insert paper, press 1, and pull paper out (don’t forget to switch on the power plug)

4. Book a travel ticket

Booking a travel ticket seems a simple task – till you are assigned to it. In the last 6 months, I traveled more than 50 cities, and had back to back entrepreneurship workshops. I had to use all my IIT and IIM training on subjects like Operations Research, Supply Chain Management and Traveling Salesman Problem etc. to be able to reach my venues on time at the lowest costs.

5. Make a newsletter

Email can be the most powerful tool for marketing to your customers, and not everyone can afford a creative agency for designing your campaigns. So practice a bit on how to make a HTML mailer, text mail and make sure it passes spam filters.

6. Write 1-page article

Whether it is to introduce to media a new service you have launched or state of affairs letter to your employees, you will need to come up with ways to express yourself in a 1-page format. Write articles on areas of your interest, as you will have to write lots of them in future – including your acceptance speech of Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

7. Write a proposal

Sales is like a bicycle – you have to keep pedaling or you will fall down. In any business, you will have to write infinite sales proposals, follow up proposals, and reply for customer requests.

8. Call an unknown person

This is another important inhibition you should try to come over with – talking to unknown person and making them into friends, business partners or potential customers.

9. Respond to email

I never sleep till I have replied, acknowledged or taken action on my emails. In business, this is critical as work keeps increasing and things are getting more cluttered rather than simple.

10. Learn online marketing

Social media marketing, search marketing, mobile marketing – these are no longer alien terms for MBAs, event those from non-engineering background like CA, commerce etc. You don’t need to be Zuckerberg, but get your basics right.

Article originally published :