Anubhav Jain

Anubhav is a modern-day small business consultant from Delhi, India that is using his business savvy and passion for design to help his client’s businesses grow.  Delhi, the capital of India is home to more than 16 million people and is largely a business-centered city. Today the city is one of India’s main tech cities. Growing up in Delhi Anubhav describes his childhood, “My life was pretty awesome”. He explained to me that his family was not rich enough to live in the thick of it all, but fortunate enough to live in the quieter neighborhoods. They were safer, greener and just on the outskirts of the city.

“I had a lot of excitement growing up in Delhi, I always felt, ‘This is the place to be.’ We always thought we were better than everyone else in India. If you were not from Delhi you were just someone trying to be someone.  I think if you grow up in Delhi, you can live in any part of the world.”

As a kid Anubhav didn’t start any businesses of his own but he spent a lot of time thinking about what could be a good mail order business, but nothing came together. Though for a short period of time he collected free stickers from his classmates and managed to sell the collection after two months, for a couple hundred rupees. Which is roughly US$3. 

Though he disliked school, he performed very well and performed in the top 10% of his class. In college he studied for his undergraduate degree in India and his graduate degree in the United States. Everyone on his mother’s side was an engineer, everyone on his father’s side was an accountant and he knew that he didn’t want anything to do with either of these fields. Anubhav decided to study architecture, which was very difficult due to the large amounts of strenuous work, though he did love to draw.  Anubhav regards Architecture school as the best education he could have ever had and recommends it to anyone, “because if you can make it through architecture school, you can make it through anything in life.” Let’s just say, Anubhav is a tough cookie, though “The US has softened me a little bit.”

Anubhav went to Arizona State University for graduate school where he studied design. Though ASU is quite the party school, he didn’t engage in much partying. He worked hard in school and at his part time job as a teacher assistant, saved his money and graduated with no debt.

After school Anubhav took a job with a company called Jump Associates that does “user centered” design. While there he had an opportunity to work on designing the layout for a section in the department store Target. Afterwards, he worked at PayPal for four years, which was quite the experience. It was the first time that he worked in an American corporation, where he had to learn office politics and to work in a team. This experience taught him great communication skills, in regards to finding ways to get his ideas heard and appreciated, without stepping on toes.

“Over four years I saw lots of people make mistakes and eventually figure out what I was telling them from the get go. But I realized me being smarter or better and knowing what’s going to happen, doesn’t really help unless you know how to connect with people.”

He used a big success on an important project as a way to gain respect from his peers and build the bridge of communication by involving other people in future projects.  He found that it was best to have a lot of input; the more the better. In business today, he continues this practice and finds the importance in working with people who have common goals.

In 2008 during the big economic crash, Anubhav was laid off from PayPal and took a role at a start up to run their design team. We discussed the importance of happiness and how it’s associated with success, “any time I was not happy with the project that I was on, my performance would drop.” Later in 2011 Anubhav was injured greatly and was unable to work. During this period he spent a lot of time at his cousin’s house. During a conversation discussing food and how much he enjoys cooking, he decided that he would host a pop up restaurant. Which went really well. “It was ridiculously successful.” He had 200 people attend, it was completely sold out and to this day they still have a 5 star Yelp rating. After a year he realized that the food industry was fun but the slim profit margins weren’t. The awesome thing about this experience is that it gave him the confidence that he could survive in the world without a job.

In 2014 after being at a new job for about a year and a half, he realized that he wasn’t happy and it was time to go full-time with a small business that he had started on the side. This business was: small business consulting.  As someone that developed websites for small businesses, what he realized that he enjoyed most was speaking with entrepreneurs about their idea and helping them develop it. So he left his job and continued developing sites for people, but with his own twist. Not only would he create a beautiful online presence for his clents but he would also help them improve their business model:

“I think that there is something that is inside the human being that is core to them that takes them in to this idea of exploring starting a business.”

In the beginning the most difficult thing for Anubhav to deal with was convincing people that he can help people launch and build their business. Mainly because there are so many services that exist that offer money and access to large networks. They all promise that they’ll make a business owner successful, though only 15% of small businesses succeed and 1% of startups succeed.

“The number one reason businesses fail is not having a market fit or a market need for their product.”

The core of his business is finding out why people are not succeeding and developing a service around that, in order to help them succeed and increase the small business and startup success rate.  His long-term plans consist of creating an incubator program to help people turn their passions and expertise into a business that thrives.

What is some solid advice that you would give to someone who is an aspiring entrepreneur or is just getting started?

“Number one is to figure out your purpose. Why are you doing this? Because being an entrepreneur is very, very tough. If you aren’t doing this for a greater purpose and you are doing it just for the money, you are going to let go at the first sign of failure. So the only thing that will keep you going is a larger vision. The second is community, because when the times are tough, you’re going to need some support.  Someone that can lift you up, someone that can be there for you in your tough times. And I think vice versa, seeing someone fail when you are succeeding, really helps you give perspective. On not only your success but helping them through their difficult times, will help you when you’re going through a similar difficult situation.” 

As far as community goes, what do you mean?

“The community you want to find is a group of people who are on a similar path that you are.  So if you are an entrepreneur who is starting something, then find a community of other people who are entrepreneurs in the same position as you are or are just a little further ahead of you. Not someone who has a job, because you’ll tell them how terrible you feel about something as an entrepreneur and they’ll say, ‘hey let’s go get a drink’. That’s not going to help you.”

Looking to connect with Anubhav to learn more about his company and how he may eb able to help you click here.

Chadwick Daniel