This is a political article with a spin. It is not in advertisement of a particular political party nor it is a comment on the working of the Delhi government, instead this time, I focus on the strategic and business management lessons that I extracted from the functioning of Aam Aadmi Party.(AAP)
Basically, I view AAP as a start-up in the political expanse of India. You may love them to the extent of claiming them to be the torch bearers of India, or you may hate them and declare them as anarchists, but I am going to view them a subject for now! You may add to this list, but this is what I believe every start-up entrepreneur in our country should learn from Arvind Kejriwal led Aam Aadmi Party –
1) Ideas are inconsequential, execution rocks :
Every second person you meet in India is a proud ‘owner’ of an idea which he thinks can sell in millions and can work wonders. Moreover, as far as Indian politics is considered, everyone is an Aristotle in our country with awesome ideas of changing politics and bringing a makeover. But execution is what matters, and Arvind Kejriwal decided not to crib and cry, but to act and execute his ideas. Basically, do not spend (read: waste) time over introspecting on how cool your idea sounds, instead get up and do it!
2) Big armies don’t work, big shots do :
Aam Aadmi Party never had surplus of funds, nor did they have a huge membership when they decided to fight on all 70 seats of Delhi. But they focused and organized their funds on those 70 seats. Don’t be disheartened if you are short on funds, just start and funds will flow. Start-ups work on non monetary resources, say, passion, determination and hard work.
3) Focus on “Trends” and be the “Trendsetter” :
This is an amazing marketing strategy which is already the subject of major business courses. Business ideas which are aligned and in sync with the latest trends are the ones that succeed. Arvind Kejriwal realized that there was angst among the common people of the country against corruption and politics. He played perfectly on the public sentiment and made it into a trend of business and “trending” on Twitter. 😉
4) Resilience, the way to go :
Income tax notices, phone taps, sting operations and allegations, Aam Aadmi Party faced it all but kept marching on, unfazed and undaunted. Basically, if you want to swim through the pond, don’t crib about getting wet. As a start-up entrepreneur and a new entrant in the market, you will have to face unethical competitors, powerful lobbies and shattering crisis, but you got to hold up against all of it.
5) Partners part, you got to dart :
Arvind Kejriwal was the backbone of Anna’s movement against corruption. As soon as the difference of opinion and ideologies cropped up, Arvind Kejriwal separated himself and went on to create the Aam Aadmi Party instead of wasting his time in convincing Anna till eternity. Basically to keep it short, when a difference with partners occurs over the fundamental working – go your way…Always!
There are a plethora of other start-up lessons that can be learnt from the way AAP has functioned –crowd-funding, marketing, publicly taking up with competitors and loads of others. Moreover, just like any other start-up, AAP had its share of pitfalls as well. But making mistakes is not bad, not rectifying them is fatal. Every business starts small, now it is up to the owners whether to make it a dwarf or a baby, because dwarves don’t grow, babies do! Keep it simple!