Author Pankaj Goyal- The Guide For Startup Businesses

In the present market condition, we can witness an increase in the number of startup businesses. Some startups taste the flavor of success and some need to leave the industry experiencing failure. Many still planning for their startups. There is a need for an experienced guide who can help startups in shaping their business in a better way. Mr. Pankaj Goyal is one such author who realized the importance of the guide and penned down the book Before You Start Up and also its Hindi Version Business Ka Sapna Poora Karne Ki Guide. Today we have with us Pankaj Ji and he shared with us his journey in the industry.
1) Welcome, Mr. Pankaj Goyal. It’s a pleasure to have you on Our readers would surely want to have a sneak peek about your background. Kindly share a brief about you, your education, and your family.
Pankaj Goyal: Thanks for having me. I grew up in Jaipur and Kota in a middle-class family. I have fond memories of living with my grandparents. Being in Kota, preparing for IIT JEE was a given path. So, I followed that, got into Computer Science at IIT Kanpur. Then did my MBA from IIM Bangalore. I am like any of us – a middle class ambitious hard-working guy.
2) Which Indian authors inspired you the most?
Pankaj Goyal: In fiction, Chetan Bhagat changed the game. He targeted the right demographics with masala stories in simple English.
In non-fiction, I haven’t found a good book from an Indian author. Actually, my book is the only Indian author-written book in the top 10 Business self-help books on Amazon.
3) Novels and especially the Romance genre is ruling the market. In such a market scenario you released Before You Start Up. Was it not a risky attempt?
Pankaj Goyal: My aim was to help and motivate the young generation in India to start new businesses, prepare well, and succeed. Our PM Mr. Modi has been focusing on promoting grassroots entrepreneurship; and I am contributing to it in a small way through my book.

Book Review: Click to Read

4) Were there any past experiences that instigated you to pen down a book on this topic?
Pankaj Goyal: The book is based on my past experiences. I ran my own startup from 2008 to 2011; which was moderately successful. I did some things right and made some mistakes. This book is a reflection of my learnings.
5) Which genre(s) are your favorite and why?
 Pankaj Goyal: I like non-fiction. I don’t read fiction. Good authors synthesize their years of learning into a book. And if I can learn from their knowledge, that’s great for me.
6) You remained an outstanding student and in general lucrative job offers are always there for IITians …. but you planned for entrepreneurship … why?
Pankaj Goyal: Because I always wanted to – from my school days. Bill Gates was my childhood hero. I took up a job at McKinsey to save some money. For me, it was a matter of when not if. It is important to have role models. I am happy now we have role models in India also.

7) You are an established technology professional and traveled across the globe, so what difference have you witnessed between Indian technology and technology across the world?
 Pankaj Goyal: There are more similarities now. In terms of talent and ambition, Indian entrepreneurs are at par (sometimes even better).
Two areas where we have to work more: 1) Indian consumers (and businesses) need to start paying for technology. Otherwise, Indian entrepreneurs will build for US/European markets. 2) The industry needs to spend more on fundamental research.
I think we under-appreciate the profound impact of the Indian technology sector on the global economy. We need to give ourselves more credit and feel proud of it.
8)  We heard that you work on Artificial Intelligence for the benefit of companies. Please share more on this exciting topic.
Pankaj Goyal: AI is changing the world around us. My kids can talk to Google Home much better than I can. I don’t think our kids will need to learn Driving. AI will change the way we will work, the way our kids will learn, the way new medicines will be built, and so on. It is a whole new fascinating world of possibilities.
9)You are closely linked with the world of entrepreneurship as an angel investor and as an advisor to start-ups in Silicon Valley and India. How critical or risky is the life of an entrepreneur?
Pankaj Goyal: Starting a new business is risky wherever you do it. Many factors are beyond your control. As an entrepreneur, you are your best friend. One needs to prepare hard before starting the business and then execute by working really hard.
10) How was the response of the readers to Before you Startup
Pankaj Goyal: The book has struck a chord with the readers. It has sold more than 40,000 copies and has been in top-selling books at Amazon for the last 3 years. I have helped more than 200 future entrepreneurs personally. People have started companies after getting inspired by the book.
11) You released the book in English first. What encouraged you to release a Hindi translation of the book?
 Pankaj Goyal: I was receiving many messages on Twitter and Facebook from people who wanted the book in Hindi; either because they were more comfortable with Hindi or because they knew of a friend or a relative who is more comfortable in Hindi. I want to support entrepreneurship in every city, tehsil, and the village of India; the fundamental principles of starting a business remain the same. So I pitched the idea of a Hindi translation to Shikha and she agreed.
12)  The conflict between the publishers and authors is very common. Have you faced such a problem while finding a publisher for your book(s)?
Pankaj Goyal: I have been super lucky to find Fingerprint! Publishing. Shikha took a risk on a new author. She and her team (Neeraj, Pooja, and others) have been phenomenal supporters.
13) What are your other passions in life?
Pankaj Goyal: Between work, the start-up community, and family (I have two young kids), I don’t have any time left. I prefer to do a few things well.
14) Please share your future plans with our readers.
Pankaj Goyal: I am creating a community of start-up enthusiasts on where I publish my newsletter. I am also helping young entrepreneurs through my twitter account (@pango).
15) Coming back to books, what’s more in the offing?
Pankaj Goyal: We just published the Hindi translation of the book. I am hoping to reach out to more readers and help them start their own new businesses.
16) Define Pankaj Goyal the Author cum entrepreneur in One line.
Pankaj Goyal: Creative, Hustler, Hard worker, always ready to help.