When there is a question if Astrology works for real, one man who made Astrology an online platform and gave easy access to Astrologers and believers who himself has a very interesting story about the prediction and continues to be one of the most active and influential people in business- None other than Puneet Gupta!
Here is a quick Interview of him.
1) Why are you so passionate about astrology?
Puneet Gupta : The thing is that astrology has happened to me instead of me chasing astrology to make a profession out of it, which is why I am always curious to explore more of it. In fact, you will be surprised to know that there was a time when I didn’t even believe in astrology.
I quit my job in 2014 to do something in the field of Ayurveda. The startup went downhill, and I lost all my savings. After seven months of fighting depression, I finally decided to move to Mumbai for a job. When I was working in Mumbai, a friend called me to ask if I would like to co-found an IT company with him. I was confused if I should say yes to the offer as the failure of the previous startup was still fresh in my memory. It was then a colleague of mine, who is also an astrologer, offered me a future prediction.
Clearly, as a non-believer in astrology, I wasn’t interested, yet agreed when she insisted. She predicted that I will start a startup soon, which, however, will shut down in two years. Thereafter, I will start another business, she added. The IT company I and my friend started did shut down after two years when he left. That was when I began to believe in astrology. I connected with my ex-colleague again and amidst the chatter, found the idea to start
Five years into starting Astrotalk, I have witnessed numerous stories of astrologers helping people come out of their problems, which stiffness my belief in astrology. It is also what inspires me to explore new ideas and ways in which I can bring out the best of astrology because I have finally realised that when it comes to astrology, the sky’s the limit.
2) How did you start your journey in this field?
Puneet Gupta: When the astrologer’s prediction came true for me, the first thought that struck my mind was that if astrology can help me, I can also help many others out there. The idea was not to impose astrology on someone but let them try it for themselves and develop an opinion of it. That’s the only reason why we still give first chat free to every user.
For starters, I solely built the Astrotalk app to provide one-on-one video consultation to our customers. Although the response and reviews were decent, the wait time was hurting customer retention. Hence, we slowly switched to call and chat consultation. Regarding funding, thankfully, I had enough from my last startup to start with.
3) What all problems did you face till date in your career?
Puneet Gupta: I lost all my savings in the first startup, which was the biggest setback. I had literally locked myself in the room for seven months as I couldn’t face my family and friends. However, today when I look back, I see it as a waste of time and something one should never do. If you are trying something different in life, you should feel proud of it instead of worrying about people who aren’t even trying.
Another blow came when I had to shut down a successful IT company clocking half a million dollars in revenue. All I had in mind was that I am back to square one with no sight of the future. Yet, I am thankful that life played its part well.
When it comes to Astrotalk, the biggest problem was finding genuine astrologers. I had to personally convenience good astrologers and give them advance from my own pocket to retain them on the app. Today, Astrotalk is a bootstrapped firm making 55-lakh/day in revenue and a number of astrologers want to join us.
4) What was your family and friends’ reaction to your start-up idea?
Puneet Gupta: More like “ye to roz ka ho gaya hai abb.” They have always known that I have a knack for startups and entrepreneurship and have even supported me throughout my journey. Astrotalk wasn’t the first startup idea they were listening to from me, but the fact that I was doing something in the field of astrology surprised them more.
5) How was it to leave your job?
Puneet Gupta:It was a decision I made overnight without giving much thought to it. Actually, there is a story behind it. I had a terrible breakup just the day before I quit my job. The exact last words of my ex before she left me were – “my dad owns a Mercedes, and you don’t even have a car.”
When you are in your early 20s, such words hit you like a bullet. The resignation was a reaction to it as I promised myself to do something big in life. But soon I realised that life is no script where you can write “5 years later” and skip to the good part. Having no source of income does scare you. Yet, things worked out anyways.
6) Who all were there for you in your Ups and Downs?
Puneet Gupta: My family, of course, has always been there for me through thick and thin. They would tell me that we are here for anything you need, and those words can really calm you down. Secondly, an old school friend of mine was a blessing in disguise when I was in the depression stage of my life. He not only helped me come out of the trauma but also arranged a job for me and even lent me money when I needed it the most. I have only a few friends, but all of them are to die for.
7) How does it feel to be an owner of $10 million?
Puneet Gupta: Ha ha!! Honestly, as a child, until we don’t have a particular toy, we constantly crave it. But once we get it, life seems normal, the toy seems normal. It’s the same with money. Now with money in the bank, the greed of it has almost gone and whatever I do, is all about creating an impact on society. Also, what I am satisfied with is the fact that I have kept the promise I once made to myself.
8) What is the reason behind such a simple lifestyle?
Puneet Gupta: Simple background, I believe. I am fortunate to earn well, but I don’t see much change in life with money. The only difference in my personality is that I try to value my time over everything else. I would not think twice before investing money in anything that saves me time.
9) What are your hobbies and interests?
Puneet Gupta: I am really into writing and Cricket. I write a lot on Quora and LinkedIn about my entrepreneurial experiences or simple life experiences.
10) What is the best award that you have received?
Puneet Gupta: I believe in rewards and not awards. Customer satisfaction is the only reward I care about. So when customers ping me on social media or through the app to let me know how Astrotalk has helped them fight their problems, it is the best feeling ever.
11) What is the one advice you would like to give to upcoming entrepreneurs?
Puneet Gupta: I would suggest that you should never be scared of starting something of your own. There is always an audience you can tap. All you need to do is focus on solving customers’ problems. Also, don’t shy away from experimenting. Most of the best campaigns of Astrotalk are the result of some weird experiment of ours. In fact, it is the only way to survive the entrepreneurial world.
Indeed Puneet Gupta is one of the influential people in business you would come across and he keeps on sharing valuable knowledge with us on Linked In. Make sure you don’t miss on his tips! Also check out his platform Astrotalk if you are an astrology lover!
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Meenal Jain- Voice that reaches souls
Meenal Jain- Voice that reaches souls
Meenal Jain is a fantastic singer who started her music career from being a girl who participated in Indian Idol 2, who made it to the top 6 finalists. And has been seen in many other reality shows such as Music Masti and Group. And here she is inspiring each and every one of us. Let us look at what Meenal has to say in this exclusive interview.
To explore more such interviews you should visit the link given below:
Q1). Tell us about your journey, you participated in Indian Idol 2 and now Meenal Jain is a singer.
Meenal Jain: I came to Mumbai just for the music and to be something in Music. I was 10 years old and I was with Suresh Ji for a few months. Being the youngest sibling in my family, I’ve always been pampered by my mother which was the reason why I couldn’t live there, as it was a Gurukul system there. I’m basically from Indore, I went back and came to Mumbai. There’s a saying “jaha ka dana pani likha hai, waha pe aa hi jate ho aap kaise bhi” There I found my first ever Guru- Shri. Manohar Raiji & Smt. Krishna Raiji who agreed to teach music to me.
And the moment they came to know that financially I’m not able to sustain the expenses of Mumbai along with my family’s expenses living in Indore, they never talked about the money required to learn music ever again. I believe finding a Guru like them is no coincidence, I might’ve done some good deed, good karma to find them.
Also the age when I started learning music was perfect as there’s no burden of any kind of responsibilities. I just have to study and Riyaz. And that’s how Indian Idol came into my life, before that I participated in all the competitions whether it be in Jai Hind College, or Malhar etc. I studied in Mithibai College and by god’s grace I always won. And Indian Idol 2 was such a different experience, the reality show where I have to put make ups. I’ve never put on makeup before, or known how the cameras work, where to look. You have to take care of a few things, present yourself glamorous on stage,and that is it.
Q2). Were there anybody before you, from your family who played music or are you the first one?
Meenal Jain: In my family, it is like they have a good taste in music- my father and my uncles but they never learned music. Music as a profession… nope. I’m a Jain Marwadi Malvi from Indore so I don’t think there’s any kind of connection with music here. I think my father was always meant to be an artist or a sportsperson. When he heard me singing for the first time he thought that I have something, some blessings for music. So he thought what can he do? All he can do is to make sure I get proper guidance and knowledge about music.
Becoming a successful singer was a different thing. Because today’s definition of success is getting 1 million views on the songs, reels that I post or being popular on social media. I’m a little laid back in social media though I try to push myself. I don’t see it as wrong but that is how I am. Off camera, I’m a very very jovial person but when it comes to camera I’m a little laid back in all these things.
Q3). At what age did you realize that you are ready to step into reality shows?
Meenal Jain: The time when Indian Idol 1 came I could have participated but I think it’s good that I didn’t participate because I still have a little bit of time. As I said I participated & performed in Mithibai since the first year itself but when it comes to reality shows, it’s a whole different thing. I think in today’s music world, especially for female singers, they want us to look like Kareena Kapoor and sing like Lataji, which is difficult. And our main thing is singing, so that should be our focus. This has been divided into different departments because being an actor is not easy. If you’ve naturally been that beautiful it is a different thing but to maintain that needs a lot of time and effort. Everything takes time and giving time to music is never enough.
People are always in a hurry to finish tasks, going from one reality show to the other. And they expect us to have loads of money which I wish and pray that we have. One of my friends used to say that it is necessary to be in love with music. Loving something takes time, whether it be a thing or a person, profession, or passion, it takes time. One should understand that the only competition is you, yourself. Because if you want to learn something, it needs time.
Q4). How did you manage to learn singing along with your school and college life?
Meenal Jain: That credit goes to my mother and my father. Especially my mother, she stayed with me. As I said, that was the age where I had no other responsibilities on my shoulders. The younger audience who wants to ask me about singing, I would always say take advantage of that age. You can practice singing, do Riyaz for more than 10 hours. As you have your parents, no need to worry about earnings, etc and your life is easy. Trust me these are extremely practical things which I’m talking about. Because today if I want to do Riyaz for 5 plus hours, I won’t be able to do it. As I have ten thousand other things to finish… I have responsibilities. And that was the time where I had no responsibilities.
Q5). Being from a different state & place, it is very difficult to manage our voice tone. How did you manage your voice tone?
Meenal Jain: Voice? It’s the same. As I said, I used to do Riyaz when I was younger, I have put a lot of time and effort… which helps me even today. That was a really important part of my life. And I really wish I could’ve given more time when I was younger, then I would be much better now. The more you practice and love your voice, the more others will love it.
Q6). Many viewers want you to sing, but before that I want to ask a question, what are the genres or languages in which you sing?
Meenal Jain: Honestly, I’m a singer. And I would love to try all the genres possible in this lifetime. I don’t want to restrict myself. I especially love to sing Ghazal, Sufi and of course old songs. But I also equally enjoy dance numbers. I want to sing everything… As a singer,I have sung in Punjabi, Gujarati, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu and Hindi of course,.. Also I love western songs.
Q7). What encouraged you to work so hard for you to make your dreams come true?
Meenal Jain: You get inspired by a lot of people in your life… of course the people who are already there, who you look up to as successful musicians and singers. But yes, my parents, my sisters, my guru inspired me. And my friends,they do so well in their lives and inspire me to do better everyday. We tend to learn some things from various people in our lives. And yes we somehow find inspiration… if we look at it, and use the inspiration, we tend to do better things than we already are.
Q8). From your family someone got inspired by you and started a career in music.
Meenal Jain: There is a nephew of mine. He really wants to learn music but of course he is studying as well. However, he is also doing music of his own. His name is Yash. And I’m so proud of him because he’s trying to find a way on his own.
Q9). What is your personal favorite genre in which you like singing?
Meenal Jain: As I said, I like to sing in every genre.. It mostly depends on my mood, sometimes I feel like I want to sing old songs and sometimes I just want to sing dance numbers… upbeat songs.. There’s no particular genre, it is all about mood.
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Shridhar Mankar: A saviour who takes just 5 minutes!
Shridhar Mankar who fairly is regarded as the saviour by many Computer Science students and related branch students, it does justice to his work! From making their academics easier with 5 minute videos to helping quick revise some topics this 5 minute engineer is a boon to the online community of students who prefer learning complex concepts through youtube. And with this interview you will know why he enjoys so much following and love from his students and subscribers!
- How has your Engineering background influenced the content you published?
I finished my engineering degree with a background in computer science, and now that I’m talking about my channel, 5 Minutes Engineering, I aim to provide answers to questions concerning CS. Since it took me 4 years to complete my CS engineering, I strive to provide solutions in my channel in a matter of five minutes. Both are connected because I am applying what I have learned over the course of my four-year journey and providing topic-related solutions within five minutes in the most easy manner. Additionally, I picked up time management skills while studying engineering, and I try my best to represent that in all of my videos. so that it takes less time for those watching, who also get the solution, and can also enjoy learning from it.
- What difficulties did you overcome to transition from Engineering to Content Creation?
I absolutely will not deny that it wasn’t difficult for me. Since it was something I had never done before, it was challenging. I had a difficult time changing from being an engineer to a content creator. I was the first person in my family to enter this industry, therefore I knew less about it and there was no instructor or someone to guide. Additionally, there are many challenging phases that people go through when you begin something new. However, I wanted to start a new and fresh concept for the people that could help in their growth as professionals. In the beginning, it was challenging to record using my camera because at that time, not everyone could afford one. I used to record it using my mobile instead, but it was challenging to look at the camera constantly, so I used to keep my toy nearby while recording and used to teach it so that I could record my topics’ related solutions. Students used to visit my channel throughout examination season, and that gave me the inspiration to keep going. It’s my turn to help the students in the finest and simplest manner possible. It was definitely challenging, but I’m glad to see that it benefits so many people broadly. I started this during my third year of college engineering, and I plan to grow my channel enormously.
- Could you briefly describe your college life?
Speaking of my college experience, I actually started crying during the first lecture on my first day of college. I cried because I was unable to respond to my professor’s basic conceptual questions on computer science. I wasn’t even sure I understood the questions he was asking at the time. due to the fact that I completed my 12th grade education through PCMB and had no prior experience of computer science. Above that, I noticed that my classmates were answering questions with thorough justifications and even engaging in debate with the professor. I got scared when I saw the scene in my class, but I didn’t give up; I kept working on myself and began making changes. Because of my persistence, I have reached this point in my life where I am doing interviews and people are watching my videos and learning from them. I went from being a student who struggled to understand basic computer science engineering topics to now making videos on YouTube and assisting many students in passing from it. All of this is a result of my perseverance and mentality of never giving up on myself. I was completely focused on my studies during my time in college, so I didn’t participate in any cultural activities and, when I did, it was only to enjoy as an audience. I ranked among the top students in my department. I first started interacting with people when I went for my masters.
- Which of your YouTube-related experiences have you found to be the most rewarding, and how have those experiences benefited your life and career?
YouTube has given me a lot of things. First of all, it has given my life direction in ways I could never have imagined. In addition, while working on it, I have learnt a lot from YouTube. I’ve discovered through YouTube that I can be a teacher who can simplify complex concepts. I used to teach the subjects during exam time, so learners would write and do well on their exams. Therefore, I then considered turning everything I had learned into an audio-visual format that would be helpful to many students taking exams. There is no alternative for YouTube, in my opinion, and it is the finest platform for those looking to start for a larger audience. It is the most priceless compliment a student can give to a teacher, and YouTube has made it possible for me every time I post a video and get to see those three magical words, “thank you sir.” When you receive feedback from others, it greatly motivates you to work more. For this reason, I am truly thankful to God for the learner’s feedback that I am currently receiving. YouTube has been extremely beneficial to me.
- What are your YouTube channel’s future goals, and how do you see its content evolving over the coming years?
We need to keep up with the times in this fast-paced world. As you can see from my youtube videos, I attempt to teach topics simply but in a more practical approach because students are more engaged in practical ways than in other ways. This also applies to the teaching profession. We must remain current in teaching as well, first in terms of knowledge, then in terms of upcoming new technology, and finally in terms of curriculum. As I previously stated, if you compare my current videos to those from the past, you will see a difference in the amount of practical advice I tend to give with conceptual solutions. I constantly work to integrate new technology and curriculum updates as the students become more involved. I’m working on it and will continue to work on it because the process is ongoing.
- What made you want to pursue a career in engineering, and how did you begin?
I’ve never considered becoming an engineer, and when I was younger, I didn’t even know what engineering was, so I didn’t consider it. However, I achieved grades above 90% in both maths and biology during my 12th grade year. People assume that if you are good at biology you will enter the medical field, and if you are good at maths you will enter the engineering field because maths is the dominant subject there. After giving it some thought, I decided on engineering because I had read that while medical required a large budget, engineering could also be accomplished on a smaller budget. This was my only goal, therefore I chose engineering with the idea that I would find employment after finishing my studies. But after enrolling in engineering, I discovered that we must specialise in a specific area. There were many alternative areas, but I decided on computer science because everyone around me told me it had a wide range of opportunities. As I previously stated, when I chose computer science as my area of speciality, I knew nothing about it. However, because of my persistence, I am now the person teaching on this subject.
- What led to the start of 5 min Engineering ?
5 minutes engineering has a pretty interesting backstory, When I was in my third year of college and it was examination time. I used to study everything at home before coming, and I never saved anything for the last minute. In order to ask me to clarify a few issues to them before the tests began, my classmates would gather around me at that time. I used to explain things to them so they could score marks. This was routine, but one day my peers informed me that although you were explaining concepts to them, there must be more people outside of this college campuses who needed assistance. They suggested ideas for videos because I had real proof—my classmates—that the topics I was discussing would help them do well on their exams. I can even make videos about the topics and assist people after that. I started making videos and posting them on YouTube because, as I’ve already stated, it’s the finest platform for reaching a wider audience. I didn’t receive much feedback at first, but as soon as the examinations started, my videos received a lot of views. At that time, I had only posted 25 videos, but I still received a lot of views during exam time. I was inspired to work harder after that. People began to give me positive feedback and create memes. The journey that I began when I was in my third year of college is still going strong and will be working on it much more effectively.
- How do you bring your expertise to your videos?
I create information in a way that requires that it be knowledgeable, simple to grasp, and short to create. I make an effort to create videos that students won’t view under stress but instead learn from in a more efficient and entertaining manner. The planning, updating, searching for examples, and creation of visualisations that take place behind the scenes are what give the camera its simplicity and flexibility. My whole focus is on making sure that the students understand the material on a deep level, especially so they will never forget it and so they can achieve good grades. Since the name of my channel is “5 Minutes Engineering,” it is maintained in a way that considers people’s mindsets. They would assume that it would be simple and quick because it only takes five minutes. It then says engineering, indicating that I will solely cover engineering-related topics in my five-minute presentation. However, because some topics are too broad and can be challenging to cover in five minutes, we still provide the best answer we can.
- Who is your favourite youtuber ?
I typically watch the videos of one particular YouTuber, whose channel is called Craylyf Rohit. He is Rohit Sharma in real life, and he is one of the persons whose videos I enjoy watching. I spoke with him and found him to be such a wonderful person. He tries to portray a cheerful existence through his vlogs, plays practical jokes, and engages viewers in his work. And this kind of content is something that people nowadays actually need. I like viewing his video, and he is like a genuinely nice person.