Nowadays, we often come across many cases of youth suicides. Some give up their lives for not being able to cope up with their academic curriculum, some due to disappointment, while others kill themselves due to depression over broken teenage relationships.
But then, there is this young man called Hironmoy. When he was just 15 years old, he lost his elder brother in a road accident. A few years later, Hironmoy lost his mother who had been ill for more than a decade, despite the family’s best efforts to save her life.
It was not easy for 18-year-old Hironmoy to free himself from this tragedy. Without wasting further tears, he started accepting whatever life threw at him and facing whatever he was exposed to. There were numerous obstacles when it came to pursuing further studies – familial depression, instability and financial drawbacks. But he never cheated on his dream. Furthermore, he never wanted to make these incidents an excuse for his failures in life.
In fact, he converted the biggest tragedy of his life into the greatest motivator, when it came to fulfilling his dreams. For him, the urge to lead an extraordinary life ignited the spark to become an entrepreneur.
Hironmoy is currently working with Gaon Ka Khana (GKK), which is a national award winning food-tech startup in Assam. He has also worked with Hopun Roshar Mon, which produces motivational videos and visuals for its many followers. Besides, he is also dealing with his virtual startup, MCH Technologies, in the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry.
For Hironmoy, GKK was basically an experimental project to evaluate whether it’s feasible to improve and develop a great business with minimum investment or not. The idea was to convey the message that business isn’t only about investments. It is also about finding the right idea by identifying the right market needs and then working on it, according to one’s capabilities.
In the words of Hironmoy, “People especially in Assam have a misconception that business is all about huge investments without which we can’t live. To be honest, we started GKK with only ₹10 in hand and ensured the optimum use of resources available to us.”
During an interview with young Hironmoy, I asked him a few questions to which his answers were crisp, clear and confident.
Question (Q): What was the biggest challenge that you faced before starting your work?
Answer (A): Lack of guidance, work-related resources and funds. Executing any potential business in a place like Sivasagar is indeed a big challenge due to the economic instability.
Q: What is your strength which gives you the impetus to do the great work you are doing?
A: The amount of love and respect that I truly have for my country.
It is really hard to believe that at only 22 years of age, Hironmoy is managing, supervising and directing a huge number of workers. According to him, personal qualification are more important than an employee’s academic qualifications. Moreover, for him, the perfect definition of a good employee is one who sticks to his/her key result areas decently, and never becomes a burden for the company.
Q: If you had a option to start your career once again, would you like to start it again?
A: No, because I am adhering to my career plan strictly and I cannot buy the time which is gone. If I don’t walk with time, then my dreams will expire and lose their authenticity.
Body-building and listening to soft music are his favourite pastimes. Depending on the volume and priority of work, Hironmoy can toil up to 16 hours a day. But usually, he follows a 10-hour work schedule.
When I asked him about the perks of being an entrepreneur, he gave a very interesting reply. He said, “I cannot keep a job for my children, but I can surely leave behind a great business for the future generations to secure their lives.”
Besides, he added, “You can solve real world problems and make a difference in the process, create your own destiny and work wherever you like, how you like and with people you like. Once you become an entrepreneur, you can generate employment for the people so that they can contribute significantly to the economic development of the nation, etc. Above all, and mainly in social entrepreneurship, living a life for others is a life worth living.”
But even gold has to suffer many beatings to become shinier and more lustrous. In order to become successful entrepreneurs, people need to inculcate the principles of discipline, punctuality, patience, self-motivation, leadership qualities, management skills, determination, proper planning, listening and speaking skills, right from childhood. Hironmoy also said that to flourish in this field, one has to be very dynamic and have the zeal to learn new things, everyday.
Q: Where do you see yourself in another 20 years?
A: I clearly see myself as one of the most successful social entrepreneurs in the world, after 20 years. The name Hironmoy Gogoi itself will be a brand and I want to excel further as a motivational speaker, writer and a fitness model.
Hironmoy is a fantastic orator. Till date, he has been invited to many places to deliver speeches – from lower primary schools to universities. Hironmoy has also received many accolades, honours and much recognition for his outstanding work, from a very early age. He received the “Student Entrepreneur of the Year 2016” award from the US- based Entrepreneur magazine. He was indeed blessed to share the same stage with the leading industry experts in New Delhi. More importantly, he was the first person from north-east India to win this award and was delighted to receive a loud applause on his achievement. Recently, in 2017, he was honoured with his second national award for GKK.
Q: What is the major difference between an entrepreneur and a person who works for/under an entrepreneur?
A: The entrepreneur is the creator, while the person who works for/under the entrepreneur is the contributor.
Q: If I ask you about the company or organisation you admire, which one would you mention and why?
A: Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC). The reasons for this are:
Firstly, the success story of their founder is extremely inspiring.
Secondly, If a foreign brand like KFC can capture our markets with their recipes, then why can’t we capture our markets with our own recipes, and build a great business?
Hironmoy admits that, apart from personal recommendations, social media was the most profitable mode of marketing for his project. He says, “Social media was the most precious asset for us to start GKK a year back. It’s very helpful for young entrepreneurs to connect with people, regarding their needs. I got connected to my audience through it.”
It is really hard to believe that a young boy who was confronted by the harsh realities of human life at a very tender age, has made it this far with his project, without any external intervention yet. Even now, he doesn’t want to have external investments for his venture. In his words, “I am not yet ready to deal with the risk of securing external funds from investors and there are some reasons behind this. But once I find myself ready to tackle the risk, then we may approach investors and VCs in the coming years.”
Hironmoy appeals to the the youth of Assam: “Don’t just build a resume. Rather, build a life. Don’t study only to get a job – study in such a way that you can generate jobs. Live your dreams and not your fears. Remember that it may take an adequately long time to accomplish your goals – but if you can stay determined by improving yourself every passing day, then the world will surely need you one day.”
The author is a media student at Tezpur University.