Why only few number of IIT kids end up doing startups
I realized it when I was talking to one of my friends at IIT-M. Though they seem to have (apparently) all the qualities for building a startup, only a very few actually end up doing it. This applies to all other IIT-like institutes too. I feel that, the problem lies in the kind of environment such institutes provide.
Me : I am not sure whether I can generalize. I don’t find you guys (IIT) serious about what you want to do. At least not dedicated.
Friend : Hmm, one reason for that is that, we feel complacent that there is always a back up. I noticed that, we take life for granted.
Me : That’s not going to take you anywhere. You might end up getting yourself paid in hefty. But I don’t find the use.
Friend : Yes, I know, I’ve observed that a lot. The reason is this. Basically, what does everybody want? Even entrepreneurs? Very interesting and absorbing work. Thats the main requisite at the end of the day. So, if you look at the placement scenario at IIT, this is what you can categorize people into two types One, the ambitious, stay hungry stay foolish types, who want to be constantly doing interesting work, and are very ambitious. Then there are the vetti people, who know they’re going to get mostly a 4 L package anyway. So the first category are those, if in any other college, would get frustrated due to the work there and seriously look at a startup. But here, they look at building good profile, fighting their asses off, so that they can get into a DB or a McKinsey or a FMCG.
Me : I agree. Problem is, they forget to form (look at) the big picture. When you are in IIT, everything becomes trivial. The next logical step you take will seem right for you. You just move with the flock. There’s too much noise that you need to normalize, to look at the big picture. And only people with BIG BALLS can do that. I haven’t come across one, till now. Not all people moving with the flock are dumb/blind either. But I am confident that only a very few actually have strong reasons for why they are doing that.
Friend : Yes, I was just stating that the Entrepreneurial Mindset in IIT is missing as people use that time and effort into getting into the big companies. Thats the difference.
… and the conversation went on…
Of course, there are really pleasant opportunities available that one need not look at entrepreneurship as the only possible work. But my only worry is that people with real motivation also get lost in this place. When you are on those lines without anybody telling you or you falling for it for silly reasons like you can make more money, etc, then you should have the BALLS to take it up and do something without thinking about SUCCESS or FAILURE. IIT guys will never do it. Even if they are really interested & motivated in building something, they will still be like a ball bouncing here and there until they get something (which will eventually happen) and go!
Solution is, they should have that “drive” within them. That’s the main quality they miss among others. They should realize it. No success stories, or forum-meetups or blah blah can get it! All these just complements the existing drive. If it doesn’t exist, then everything else is a waste.
PS : Upvote on HN, so that I can have more people sharing their views on this. Thanks :)
EDIT : I apologize if this post has offended you in any way. It was totally unintentional. I thank the person who made this anonymous comment and made me realize this. This post is also not for controversial purposes. I made this post, to gather views from everyone and try to come up with a workaround to change the startup scene here in India. This is not a post against IITians or anybody else for that matter. And this article concerns only to related people. Lastly, I didn’t mean it, when I told “IIT guys will never do it”. I sincerely apologize again.