TheCconnects: Can you tell our readers a little about your professional journey & how did you come to your current role/position?
Nizam M: I did my BE engineering in the College of Engineering at Guindy – Anna university, where you learn more life lessons than engineering. CEG is a wonderful place on earth that accommodates people from all levels of economics. You can find students from the lower middle class, upper class, and super-rich students sitting on the same bench and listening to the same lecture.
Being a son of a Tailor, studies were my priority. I scored good cut-off marks in board exams and got admitted to the Manufacturing department. I have utilized my college days very well by participating in various volunteering and college club activities which gave me a lot of exposure.
During my second year, the Government of Tamilnadu distributed free laptops for government college students and I too received one. I knew from inside I would use it to the fullest. I have started learning programming languages with the poor wifi in the hostel.
During my third year of study, I started a coupon and deals website called mypaisa which displays coupons and attractive offers from online sellers like amazon, Flipkart, and other ecom startups. My coding skill was very bad and the UI was not that attractive, but I made some money through Affiliate programs and through AdWords.
Though my heart is with creating something on my own, being from the lower middle class I have sat up for campus interviews and got placed in ACC Cements, and moved to Mumbai after my college but my entrepreneurial itch was not allowing me to sleep. I always dream of starting my own business. Along with my friend from NIT, we started two other sites which didn’t go up well.
Later I moved to Magicbricks in Chennai and I was working as a sales executive, here I got the opportunity to understand how online real estate works and how they are monetizing the platform. Since I was in a customer-facing role I understood the pain points customers facing in the existing system. So to address the pain point I came out and started findbhk.com which works on-site visit, lead, and advertisement models for builders in Chennai.
Findbhk.com is not the one-stop solution but one of the solutions to be added to their marketing mix. We are the viable option for small and medium-size builders.
TheCconnects: Who has influenced you the most in life and why?
Nizam M: My parents, both father, and mother, influenced me a lot. We suffered a lot financially during my school days but they made sure I get a good education. They admitted me to a matriculation school in my village and they never gave up till I finished college. They had gone through so many hardships but still managed to bring me up.
This environment made me so responsible which made me think of family first.
TheCconnects: What are the biggest challenges you have faced in your life & how did you overcome them?
Nizam M: I would say my entire childhood days were challenging only. Unlike others, during school or college holidays we can’t sit in the house or go on vacation. We have to go to work to take care of next semester’s needs.
A proper three times meal, a proper uniform, and even a good dress during festivals were very difficult then, I would say If you were brought up in a poor family everything will be challenging only.
At findbhk.com I am facing many challenges but somehow I am mitigating them with the help of nature.
TheCconnects: What lessons have you learned from your professional career?
Nizam M: STEP BACK IF IT’S NOT WORKING, either in a job or in business, you should foresee the possible outcomes of what you are doing. If you feel that the business model is not working you have to be smart enough to step back and pivot, you should not apply the “ NEVER GIVE UP “ formula here.
Don’t give up on your destination, but be flexible in the routes. In findbhk.com we have pivoted our business model many times based on the market feedback and it worked for us. If I were stubborn we would have closed it a long time back. It’s been three years now and we are growing every month.
Repeating the wrong things is not the right thing, it will hurt you for sure. Pivoting and being flexible is good. You won’t break easily if you are flexible.
TheCconnects: What do you see as the biggest challenge for brands in the digital space?
Nizam M: If you want to sustain yourself, you have to build a strong moat around your business. In the digital space, it’s very easy to start a business like the existing successful one and the clutter will happen for sure. Brand recalling is very important to sustain.
I would suggest adding outbound activities to the marketing mix. For a new business it’s very easy to run online campaigns they can start with thousand rupees on meta /google but doing an outbound activity is not the same.
I believe to stand out from the digital clutter outbound activities are crucial.
TheCconnects: How can your product/solution help to resolve the pain points of your customers?
Nizam M: We do presales support for real estate builders right from lead generation, pitching, and filtering the qualified buyers, this process makes the seller’s job easy, they need not to deal with unwanted and mere inquiry calls which saves a lot of time and reduces telecallers in the room.
TheCconnects: Do you have any advice for those who want to become a chief executive officer?
Nizam M: From a startup perspective, it’s really easy to attain a CXO level, but to justify it’s super important to understand the entire business even CTO should be aware of finances, marketing, and other cross-functional activities. Cross-functional knowledge and team handling are very important.
You need to make sure whoever is traveling on the bus is going towards the same destination, if someone wants to travel to the otherside please drop them at their stop.
You can connect with Nizam M on Linkedin here