It is my birthday. As usual, I was longing for a call from Singapore. Not that it is important because it is coming from abroad; it is important because it is coming from my friend Ram.
As I think of him, I went back to the tough days I had during the initial days of my business. I was always a curious kid when it comes to doing business or living my life in my own terms. After my MBA, I took a job as any middle class student would do to support my family and to live without bothering my parents anymore. But the job didn’t suit me well; rather I didn’t suit much for a corporate job as my heart was always longing to do business. I always had some reason to postpone my decision to quit my job and start my business. I still remember, it was my 27th birthday, Ram and I use to stay in same room. He asked me one important question: “Are you going to live this unsatisfied life till you get old? What is stopping you from following your heart?” We had the entire night discussing about pros and cons of me doing business. By 4 am in the morning, he had me convinced enough to quit my job and start my business.
The next day, I quit my job and ventured into business. I hardly had about one lakh rupees in my hand during that time. All my money vanished in the first 3 months paying salaries, rent and other expenses incurred. I remembered the days when I used to walk over 8 km just to save 10 rupees which would help me to buy something to eat. I still stayed with Ram in the same house for which I stopped paying rent. Ram took care of my rent, monthly payments and at times my lunch and travel tickets to meet my client. His support extended for close to 6 months without asking me anything about my business. He always used to stay, you will get it. He had much more confidence in me than I had during those days. He constantly pushed me to pitch more clients and when I had clients, he took off from office to help me service them better.
I finally got my first big client after a year; from then on, the success story of my business begun. All this time, he continuously supported me monetarily & emotionally. I often think that I am one of the luckiest guys to have such a good friend to support me during my tough period. After another year, I made plans to repay Ram so that our friendship doesn’t get affected because of money. He simply refused when I offered money and he just said, “When you get a chance like this to help someone in future, don’t hesitate. That is the best repayment you can do for me.” I was astonished by his reply. But that was what made me today a humble businessman not only working for money but for creating value and to encourage youngsters. I learned that friends can not only help you share happiness but also your worries. I learned that friends can not only help you share happiness but also your worries. I think, you will be able to do better if you cherish moments when you are #together with your friends and family who care for you. They always make you #lookup.
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