Sramana Mitra has founded there companies viz. Dais, Intarka and Uuma. One Million by One Million is an addition to her entrepreneurial assets and is created to offer easy accessibility to budding entrepreneurs and business aspirants to resources like methodology, knowledge and networks etc. Prior to founding this, Sramana Mitra has been working as strategy consultant in Silicon Valley since 1994.
In her career so far, she has played crucial role in developing various online businesses and specializes in revenue building. From off-shore software services to cloud computing, sales, leads & ecommerce, there is nothing that she didn’t work on. One Million by One Million is one of her ventures and is world’s first and only global virtual incubator that helps businesses make millions. Read more about this zealous entrepreneur.
Please provide a brief overview of your product/ service.
1M/1M is the first and only global virtual accelerator for startups with the mission of helping a million entrepreneurs reach a million dollars and beyond in annual revenues.
What inspired you to build the above product/ service?
I observed that over 99% of the businesses that seek financing get rejected. Yet, the entire incubation and acceleration eco-system of the world focuses on the less than 1% fundable startups. I decided to change this, and democratize entrepreneurship education and incubation.
What is your life mantra?
What was the most challenging part of your journey till now?
The biggest challenge remained ‘Being ahead of the market’. “Startup” and “Calcutta” were incongruous concepts, when I started DAIS in 1994. My mission was to jumpstart a technology industry in Calcutta, using my MIT Computer Science background to plug my birthplace into the global startup eco-system. Recruiting talent that understood my mission well helped and till founding One Million by One Million, the challenge remained the same. I am still ahead of time but with clarity of mind the journey becomes inspiring.
How did you overcome those challenges?
I have not taken venture capital for 1M/1M to be able to give it a longer runway.
Share some details about the investments that you have been able to fetch for the business till now.
1M/1M is entirely self-financed and has been profitable from year 1.
How do you protect yourself from the problem of Brain Drain?
We have a small, tight-knit team, and everyone is aligned against a common goal. There is no politics in the organization, everything is about getting things done. The culture is honest, collaborative, and no nonsense.
According to you, what are the three qualities an individual must have to achieve success?
- Clarity of purpose.
- Communication skills.
Which online tools/ services/ apps do you use the most and would like to recommend as well?
Share any one habit which you think makes you more productive.
Ability to say ‘No’ to a whole lot of people and things.
Share any one habit which you wish to change in yourself
Becoming better at giving feedback more gently. I was never good at sugar coating the feedback in a way that is particularly nurturing or reassuring. Being honest in the regard is innate.
Answer in less than 50 words
One tip to success:
So, to net it out, my humble advice to all those who are trying to learn leadership, is to achieve clarity in your own mind, first, on what you want to achieve. Clarity is the highest form of human intelligence. It is very hard to achieve. Human mind is a cluttered place. Sifting through that clutter and finding a core mission isn’t an easy endeavor.
Once you have clarity in your own head, the next thing to learn is how to communicate that vision to your stakeholders. What is the narrative you build around the vision that helps you inspire people around you?
And finally, of course, execution. Not one day. Not one week. Not one month. You need to execute every day, week after week, month after month, year after year. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Persistence, resilience, staying power – ultimately, these strengths win over market challenges.
One mistake you believe every individual must avoid:
In entrepreneurship, running out of cash is the one thing to avoid at all costs
One most important lesson that you have learnt till now:
Making a lot of money so that one can retire is a stupid goal. I want to continue working till the end of my days.
What are your plans for next 3 years?
The same as they are for the next 30 years. Make entrepreneurs successful through 1M/1M.
If you get a chance to start your career again what would you do differently this time?
What are your top three getaway destinations ?
Share a quote that inspires you the most.
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new” – Albert Einstein