Yesterday I was part of a discussion on the Policy for Startups in Karnataka. Despite being part of a startup for the last 5 years, this was my first interaction on this, thanks to my interaction with Rajeev K from NASSCOM. This connection came through a connect and the 10000 startups website (https://10000startups.com/). We had applied for an online mentorship.

Lesson:  There are ways to reach out to government support – however, the initiative is yours. Once you are part of the eco-system, you will be updated thru emails and the like. Again, like with any Network, how much you use this eco system is your personal initiative.

The Policy by the government does not address special needs of startups from different segments. So Technology startups and Brick and Mortar startups are clubbed together. New start-ups with innovative ideas and Mid stage startups – with a few projects already executed are all clubbed together. However, it is not that the Mentors and Government employees do not understand the difference – its just that there is a lack of initiative to club and group and segment startups.

Herein lies the biggest opportunity for Karnataka to emerge as a True Startup Preference destination – by becoming a state where there are clear Mentoring paths across 2 dimensions: Industry and Stage of Start-up

Just a Cross tabulation of these 2 factors can help define the required the correct interventions for a startup at different points of progression. It will also help the government understand how not to overload information to startups who have yet to reach a certain maturity!! Thus, I suggest a mentorship approach :

The number of intervention possible from the government is limited – perhaps 20-25 things like Corporate connect + funding support + …… A grid like structure will make it easier for Startup founders and Government / NASSCOM mentors on hand-holding the startups – Today they spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to best assist the startups

­­Tell me honestly, as a startup founder, do you feel you a good Leader? With the ability, vision, foresight to grow the organization you are putting your hopes, dreams and hard work into? Many startup founders need Coaching to Emerge as Leaders!! A measurement of Leadership traits so that they can focus on the areas where they lack. (Of course I highly recommend using https://pexitest.com/ for the Leadership Assessments 😊 )

A start-up founder is passionate about his startup and ready to do what it takes to become the best Leader for the organization . The Government and NASSCOM mentors should help them – like in the corporate- with Emerging Leadership programs.

There is no Corporate HR or CHRO for a Start-up who will look at this nurturing. This should be one of the KEY AREAS of focus and value-add.

I look forward to your views. Do share your thoughts on what you want in the Government Policy to enable the Startup Ecosystem to prefer Karnataka as a Startup destination

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