Aeroshil Nameirakpam - Importance of Telling your Story as an Entrepreneur

Aeroshil nameirakpam
6 min readSep 21, 2017

“7 Secs is all you get to grab the attention of investors, potential customers and partners to sell your business idea as an Entrepreneur” said one of the key note speakers at the recently concluded Survive and Thrive 2017, a boot-camp for mission driven entrepreneurs. This year the booth camp was organized from 8th to 10th September 2017 in Kent, Connecticut and India Network was one of the sponsor companies.

India Network is a premium platform founded by Rahul Narvekar where one can connect, collaborate and learn to exchange ideas, seek help from domain experts and meet fellow entrepreneurs for guidance and mentorship. This year India Network took 20 entrepreneurs, from thousands of applicants, for a 7 days US trip to participate in Survive and Thrive boot camp.

I was very fortunate to have been selected as part of the 20 member team and spend an amazing all expense paid week in the US to participate in the Survive and Thrive 2017 Booth camp for Mission Driven Entrepreneurs.

My journey for the event started by taking a flight from Imphal International airport to Mumbai on 6th Sept.2017. Our fight from mumbai to JFK was the next day early morning hence i had to crash at some place for the night to rest and rejuvenate for the early morning flight. Instead of going for a hotel i went for a hostel with bunk beds and 8 people in one room. Its great to see how things have changed in India and people are more liberal towards the concept of shared economy. 5 years back i would be terrified staying with 8 strangers in one room and the fear about getting mugged or belongings stolen but due to liberalization people have become more welcoming and friendly. It was great to see everyone sharing space in the main lounge doing their own stuff on free wifi and listening to soft music.

I met up with Rahul , Nishant, Akshit and Charan in the airport early morning on 7th Sept . Unfortunately to our utter surprise one of our colleague who was supposed to board the flight with us wasn't allowed to travel as the over-smart airline agent tore off his passport cover by accident while checking for his passport details , I didn’t know there was such a rule ! Hard luck for him he couldn’t board the flight and missed his trip but it gave us a good lesson to take care of our passport pages specially travelling abroad. It was an unfortunate shocker.

After about 23 hours of flight including stop-over in Abu Dhabi we landed JFK New York around noon and were taken from airport to Hotel in Manhattan by a very interesting Bangladeshi cab Driver. The guy had been in US for just about 6 years but had transformed to complete American way of living and culture including picking up the Yankee accent , i myself stayed in US for more then 8 years before coming back to my hometown but couldn’t transform my accent. Maybe it was by choice. I tried really hard not to pick up the accent as it sounded really cocky when i hear other India guys trying to talk with American accent and i never liked it.

After taking a full day rest we headed out the next day to Club Getaway in Kent, Connecticut which was the venue for Survive and Thrive 2017. It was an amazing chartered bus drive of about 2 hours from Manhattan, New York and we thoroughly enjoyed the scenic country roads of New York State towards Connecticut. Once we reached the venue we were greeted and welcomed by KEAN WONG one of the Co-founders of Survive and Thrive and off course a lot of food . After we went through the formality of signing up and depositing our luggage we went for a customary Club Getaway fun activity which we participated with full enthusiasm and energy.

We definitely were getting spoiled with all the free drinks and free food but loved the networking and time we spent at club Getaway, away from all the madness of the city life and craziness.

Next day after breakfast we joined the other teams for a pitch competition, we learned a lot about how to give the perfect pitch and the importance of connecting to the investors through our story. The organizers gave us an assignment to create a story board and redo our pitches , which was a remarkable improvement from our previous pitch. The Story board helped us a lot to connect with the audience and i found it way easier to communicate with the crowd.

Following days Star speakers like JESSE ITZLER Co-founder of Marquis Jet and Owner of The Atlanta Hawks, KEVIN HARRINGTON $5 Billion Infomercial King Original Shark from Shark Tank and SUSIE CARDER President/COO,Motivating The Masses graced the event and gave some really powerful speeches. They were hustlers and gave us a personal account of their entrepreneurial journey , how they went complete down in their business and through sheer willpower how they were able to get back on their feet to conquer the world again. I was most impressed by Susie Carder , her speech was very moving and very powerful. She started her profession as a Hair Dresser later with few educational background but ended up building the most successful digital marketing company. It was awe inspiring.

Of all the amazing points shared by the speakers during the event , the one which stuck with me was about the Importance of Creating a Story about our own startup venture. “Investors are first People before they are investors” and they are always looking for the “Why” part of Starting a business and how they can relate to it. Understanding the “Why” part and specific details and circumstance which prompted the entrepreneur to plunge into the venture provides a great sense of commitment and how much the entrepreneur is emotional about the idea and willing to go the extra mile to bring it to reality. An intention setting and a crystal clear messaging by telling a story is very powerful in convincing the investors about the commitment level of the entrepreneur and the urgency of solving the problem.

We also participated in various workshops and one-on-one sessions with mentors who provided great insight into our business ideas. Overall it was a great learning experience unlike any other boot-camp and conferences i participated so far . It was more relaxed environment with lots of free and open access to the mentors and investors. I truly believe now the survive and thrive booth-camp format is the best format for Entrepreneurs and investors meet. Some of our team members from India were able to get funding during the event and we are all very happy about that.

India Network in collaboration with Survive and Thrive has done a great job in creating an amazing experience for struggling entrepreneurs by showing a way of connectivity among entrepreneurs and with investors which is a very different experience compared to the usual corporate setting. Most of the other conferences it is all about exchanging business cards , we don’t get that intimate access to investors or mentors hence its very difficult to discuss about the emotional aspect of our startup story on why we are doing , what we are doing. Survive and thrive booth-camp format gives us that opportunity to tell our story more intimately and increases our chances to spread our story more effectively and intimately.

Lots of appreciation for India Network team lead by Rahul Narvekar who so generously covered the entire costs of participation and travel for all the participants from India to US and provided us such an amazing experience. It was an unprecedented step which no other big giant companies in India has never done for supporting entrepreneurs in Tier II, Tier III, Tier IV and Tier V cities. Hats off to India Network team and wish them the best in all the future endeavors they take up and i cant thank them enough for giving such an amazing experience.