The novel coronavirus has crippled the global economy. Consumption is at a standstill. Incalculable job losses and revenue losses are being reported in almost every sector of the Indian economy. The ability to rise to the challenge and jump from the gloom to the growth is what is going to separate high performers from laggards.
Rajan Anandan, Managing Director, Surge & Sequoia Capital India elucidates, “It is surely a difficult time for startups in India, especially for the ones who were only India-focused. Many sectors have been deeply impacted and haven’t recovered." Anandan was speaking at the sixth edition of the virtual Young Entrepreneur Summit and Awards 2020 organized by BW Businessworld.
Sharing the major lessons Anandan learned from the pandemic, he said, "Personally, my learnings from the pandemic and the lockdown have been very riveting." He stated, "First, consumer and business behaviour has changed significantly. While consumers have switched to newer channels for consuming content, businesses too have adopted effectively to these changing patterns." Anandan's observation is that in the given times, businesses stood close to their consumers, understood the changing behaviour, and reinvented themselves.
Further, Anandan informed on the other changes that have happened, "Most companies are now moving back to the basics. They are making their foundations stronger, adapting better, moulding themselves with the new normal. He stated, "Many aspects of businesses have been reimagined. We are now witnessing experiments with acquisition channels, supply chains, communication channels, product innovation, etc.”
Anandan firmly believes that the changes that would have taken the next five years have already happened in the past five months. He advises, “It is an exciting time for you if you are an entrepreneur. Opportunities are in full swing. You must deeply understand the changes happening to users, engage with them, analyze the data, and based on your learning, be flexible to change.”