Guidance for Design in Early-Stage Startups

Designers are an essential and highly sought-after profession in tech startups and companies. There are various types of designers with distinct roles that often overlap in some way. Two crucial design features are user experience (UX) and user interface (UI), which although can be performed by one designer, have distinct differences.

The role of a user experience designer involves conducting user research to understand consumer needs and preferences, creating prototypes, and testing product functionality. Conversely, the user interface designer is primarily concerned with the product’s visual elements, such as aesthetics, color schemes, and layouts.

Jay Dutta, Senior Vice President, UX Design at, shares his insights on how startups can approach UX/UI design, particularly when they lack a designer on their team. He advises avoiding getting distracted by flashy visuals on popular designer websites and instead focusing on understanding the relationship between product thinking and design. Seeking mentorship or brainstorming ideas with friends can also be helpful.

Jay Dutta is an experienced design mentor who collaborates with startups to help them leverage design in their businesses. is an online travel company that provides travel packages, including flight and bus tickets, hotel information, and more, to customers within India and internationally.

This video is part of our Start-up 101 series, which serves as a user-friendly manual for budding entrepreneurs. Our team of experts and mentors is here to answer all your startup questions and strengthen your basics before guiding you through the nuances of starting a successful business.

Tips for Dividing Equity Among Startup Founders

Video on how to divide equity among founders

How do you determine the equity division among founders? When a set of people get together to form a company this is the first question. Is there a framework or a fixed formula for the same. Instead, it is a function of some factors. There are also some other concerns to keep in mind as well as what if one of the founders leaves in midway?

Sharda also mentions about checking out the startup equity calculator tool that is available.

Sharda Balaji in this video speaks about some tips that can be taken into consideration while deciding on the equity division among founders. She even shares some of the important points and clauses to keep in mind while doing the same.

Building Strong Team || Pre-Money and Post Money || Startup Product Listing

The Importance of Due Diligence During Funding

Due diligence is a critical process that startups and investors go through before a funding round. This process helps the investors to evaluate the startup’s potential, analyze its financial position, and assess the risks involved in investing in the company. Due diligence helps the investors to make informed investment decisions, and it helps the startup to build credibility with potential investors.

Sharda Balaji, Founder of Novojuris, a law firm specializing in advising startups and investors, believes that due diligence is a crucial aspect of any funding round. According to Sharda, due diligence involves evaluating several aspects of the company, including its financials, legal compliance, intellectual property, and management team.

The financial due diligence process involves reviewing the startup’s financial statements, projections, and other financial records to assess its financial health. This process helps investors understand the startup’s revenue streams, expenses, and potential profitability. Investors also evaluate the startup’s revenue growth rate, customer base, and market share to assess its potential for future growth.

Sharda Balaji emphasizes the importance of due diligence in building trust and credibility with investors. She advises startups to be transparent and open during the due diligence process, as it can help build a positive relationship with investors. Investors, on the other hand, should be thorough in their due diligence process to ensure that they make informed investment decisions.

In conclusion, due diligence is a critical process that startups and investors should take seriously during funding rounds. The process helps investors evaluate the startup’s potential, assess its risks and build trust and credibility with potential investors. With the help of an expert like Sharda Balaji, startups can navigate the due diligence process successfully and secure the funding they need to grow and succeed.

CAP Table || Organic and Inorganic Growth

Self-Publishing Success: Tips from Indian Authors

If you’re an aspiring author, writer, or storyteller looking to self-publish a book, there are a few key tips and strategies that can help you achieve success in India’s competitive literary market. In a recent video featuring Ushasi Sen Basu, author of “Kathputli”, Febin John James of “Cloud Is a Piece of Cake”, and Kiruba Shankar, the experts share their insights on how to self-publish a book and make it stand out

The video focuses on the importance of self-publishing without the assistance of a publisher or self-publishing agents. The guests also share effective and efficient ways to finish writing the book faster, as well as the importance of marketing and pricing to ensure that the finished product receives the recognition and sales it deserves. In today’s era of social media and blogging, marketing and promoting your new project is easier than ever. These platforms can also be used for sourcing information and ideas about your book.

The art of storytelling is central to human beings, but only a few get published. Ushasi Sen Basu and Febin John James published their books without the assistance of professional publishers. This means they were involved in writing the manuscript, editing, publishing, and marketing. Ushasi Sen Basu wrote a fiction novel and didn’t feel comfortable giving the reins of her book to anyone, so she did it herself. Inspired by a technical book written in a simple manner, Febin John James wrote a book on Cloud with the aim of making it simple and affordable for everyone. He conducted pricing research that would enable local people to afford his book.

Kiruba Shankar also shares his views on different formats available to get the author’s message to the appropriate audience. The three writers outline methods to publish stories using the available resources.

If you’re looking to self-publish a book in India, remember to focus on the key aspects of writing, editing, marketing, and pricing. Utilize the power of social media and blogging to promote your work, and make sure to research pricing strategies to reach your target audience. With these career growth tips and success strategies, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a successful self-published author.

Ushasi Sen Basu, author of “Kathputli”, and Febin John James of “Cloud Is a Piece of Cake” in on how to self publish a book.

Success Strategies: Using Startup Product Listing Websites

Video on Product listing website

Looking for success strategies for your startup? One of the best ways to promote your products is through startup product listing websites. These websites make your company visible to potential customers and investors, but finding the right one can be a challenge.

In a helpful video, Prasanna Krishnamoorthy, a partner in the value SaaS catalyst firm Upekkha, guides viewers through various startup product listing websites. He emphasizes the importance of being clear about your target market and investors when choosing a platform.

These websites offer several benefits, including access to a good customer base, peer suggestions, honest feedback, and purposeful networking. However, it’s important to choose a platform that aligns with your goals and values as a company.

Prasanna Krishnamoorthy is a seasoned coach for young entrepreneurs and has worked with Microsoft Accelerator. He has authored numerous articles on startups, product management, and product-market fit. In this series, he shares his expertise on product and tech to help startups navigate the basics and nuances of building a successful business.

Dividing Equity among Founders || Building Strong team

Prof Saras Sarasvathy and Her Effectuation Principles: A New Way of Thinking About Entrepreneurship

Effectuation Principles

Professor Saras Sarasvathy is a well-known scholar and educator who has contributed significantly to the field of entrepreneurship. Her research on effectuation principles has provided a new way of thinking about entrepreneurship that emphasizes the importance of creativity, flexibility, and collaboration. In this article, we will explore Professor Sarasvathy’s effectuation principles and their impact on entrepreneurship.

Professor Sarasvathy is a professor at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. She earned her PhD in Information Systems from Carnegie Mellon University and has published numerous articles in top academic journals, including the Journal of Business Venturing, Academy of Management Journal, and Strategic Management Journal.

Professor Sarasvathy’s effectuation principles have had a significant impact on entrepreneurship research and practice. They have challenged the traditional view of entrepreneurship as a linear, planned process and provided a new way of thinking about how entrepreneurs create new opportunities.

Effectuation is a way of thinking about entrepreneurship that emphasizes the importance of action and experimentation over planning and prediction. According to Professor Sarasvathy, entrepreneurs use five principles of effectuation to create new businesses and opportunities:

  • Bird-in-Hand Principle: Entrepreneurs start with what they have, rather than waiting for the perfect opportunity. They focus on their strengths, resources, and relationships to create new possibilities.
  • Affordable Loss Principle: Entrepreneurs are willing to take calculated risks and learn from failure. They invest only what they can afford to lose and view mistakes as opportunities for learning and growth.
  • Lemonade Principle: Entrepreneurs are creative problem-solvers who can turn unexpected events into opportunities. They use their skills and resources to adapt to changing circumstances and create new value.
  • Crazy-Quilt Principle: Entrepreneurs build strong networks of relationships and collaborators who can help them achieve their goals. They value diversity and use their connections to find new opportunities.
  • Pilot-in-the-Plane Principle: Entrepreneurs are in control of their own destinies and create their own future. They use their skills, resources, and relationships to shape the future and achieve their goals.

Effectuation principles have been used to explain the behavior of successful entrepreneurs and have been applied in the development of entrepreneurship education programs. They have also been used to guide the development of new businesses and to help entrepreneurs adapt to changing circumstances.

Professor Sarasvathy’s effectuation principles have provided a new way of thinking about entrepreneurship that emphasizes the importance of action, creativity, and collaboration. They have challenged the traditional view of entrepreneurship as a linear, planned process and have had a significant impact on entrepreneurship research and practice.

Entrepreneurs who use effectuation principles focus on what they have, take calculated risks, adapt to changing circumstances, build strong networks, and create their own future. By following these principles, entrepreneurs can create new opportunities, build successful businesses, and achieve their goals.

Effective Success Strategies for Startups: The Importance of Mentoring

Video on Startup Mentoring

Startups require the right nurturing and guidance to channelize their energies towards growth and sustainability. A lot can happen with the right mentoring at the right time, making mentors catalysts for startup success. Therefore, finding the right mentoring is paramount for founders who have the capabilities but lack guidance.

A mentor can be anyone with enough expertise, network, and enthusiasm, such as a family member, friend, ex-colleague, or investor. It is the responsibility of founders to recognize and bring efficient mentors on board to facilitate the growth of their company.

In a video, Ravi Narayan, CEO of T-Hub Hyderabad, a startup incubator, emphasizes the importance of mentoring for the growth of a startup. As an alumnus of IIT-M and USC, Narayan has mentored several startups as part of the accelerator program of Microsoft. He has also advised state governments and national governments of Singapore and Malaysia.

Video on guidance for design. Employee growth || B2B Marketing Strategies

Maximizing Employee Growth and Roles in Startups

Stephan Haeckel once said, “Ambiguity is great for certain kinds of creative activities but is the mortal enemy of systems design.” However, in a startup culture that values creativity and challenges the status quo, a certain level of ambiguity in defining employee roles may be beneficial.

In high-growth startups, employee skill sets often exceed and evolve beyond their initial roles. Unfortunately, many startups lack a talent strategy and realize too late that they have the wrong people in place. To prevent this, it is essential to prioritize roles such as engineers, sales managers, product specialists, and marketing managers, ensuring that all bases are covered. Begin by focusing on roles and responsibilities with co-founders, analyzing strengths and weaknesses to determine where each team member performs best. Tasks should be published for everyone to see, keeping them updated and organized. This approach sets a positive precedent for new hires and aids in the first year of business.

In a video discussing the evolving roles of employees during startup growth, Ravi Narayan, a pioneer in the Venture Catalyst/Startup Accelerator space and former Global Director at Microsoft for Startups, highlights the importance of maximizing employee growth and roles. As an advisor to corporations and governments in top startup ecosystems, he emphasizes that startups must have a clear understanding of employee roles and strategies for employee development to achieve success.

Another area of importance- budgeting. || First 100 days with Investor

Where to Look for Constructive Feedback for Your Startup Product?

Feedback is crucial for startups to improve the quality of their products. However, not all feedback is created equal. To get the most constructive feedback, it is essential to seek it from the right people. According to Prasanna Krishnamoorthy, entrepreneur trainer and startup advisor, the best feedback comes from paying customers. Since they have invested in the product, they are more likely to provide honest and valuable feedback.

The second-best source of feedback is from potential customers who are interested in using your product. On the other hand, feedback from random people, such as through surveys, may not be as helpful in improving your product.

If you are a startup founder seeking advice and guidance, check out our Startup 101 Series. We have gathered insights and tips from experienced founders, CEOs, mentors, and others in the startup ecosystem to answer all your startup-related questions. Whether it’s pitching an idea, calculating market size, legal steps, recruitment, marketing challenges, or acquisition, we have you covered. While a definitive startup manual may not exist, we have compiled the FAQs to provide a comprehensive startup guide.

Mentoring for Growth || Budgeting Tips || Startup Product Listing websites