Maybe you've not heard of the monster content company that's Bokha DS, but you've definitely watched the videos in the form of the monster YouTube channel slash social media page failed to copy the theme behind Valdo.
Copy is this conglomerate called Pocket Aces and Pocket Aces was co-founded by three people.
I needed one data and a couple that comprises of assurance Raiche and our guest on the board, Custardy Aditi Srivastav. The three of them together have probably bailed out one of the most successful entrepreneurial journeys in the world of digital media, so much to learn from these brilliant people. But of the three of them, I got a chance to speak with the lady in the house, added the oh, my God, what a conversation.
Anyone who enters the field of content always wants to grow out extremely large. And I feel like if you want to do that, you have to study the people who've done it before you. That's what I did. She was sort of gave to me on a personal level through this podcast, but I promise you, if you're an entrepreneur in general, there are learnings for you.
If you're an ambitious person. There's learnings for you and especially if you're a content creator. This could be a life changing content piece. Enjoy this extremely deep, kind of long, but very, very value adding episode of the runway show with Aditi SheBar stuff. And if you want highlights of this episode, subscribe to our YouTube channel. There are indeed short clips at the Srivastav on the runway show. Today, we've got the co-founder of ASES, other issues of ma'am, thank you for being on the show.
Don't call me ma'am and thank you for having. It's been a long time coming, so I'm excited to be here.
The whole you know, it the whole pocket is demons team that I look up to a lot right from like day one. I remember like when I found out what y'all were doing in the conference because I found out that you all were approaching things very entrepreneurially. I always felt like, yes, that that is what should be done in the Indian YouTube space. So while I do wish to know the entire story, I want to kind of dial back a little bit, because you've co-founded it with two other people, one of which happens to be your husband.
But even even before that, I know you guys don't have a background in media or content. So where did this story start?
So this story started, I guess, why people in college.
So, look, we've all grown up as big, just like cinema buffs like Thebe of six that. So even in my family, it's a very determined family and used to stay up late at night or Sancti. Movies are pretty, you know, ending oligarchy. And we used to stay up all night like watching those kind of movies and never had a bedtime, etc.. So I've always been a huge fan of movies and huge fan of TV series and shows, etc.
. Now, when we were all in college, Ashvin and we were all doing engineering and my two co-founders, Ashvin and I were in college together and they took some like filmmaking classes, you know, appreciation of cinema type of classes in college as well. But again, it was also fine, you know, to lower the pressure off the rest of the engineering classes that you have.
And then when we all moved to New York to start working, Ashvin actually did, of course, in the New York Film Academy. So he actually needed a direction who was there. And he was volunteering to set up the Indian Film Festival that happens in New York every year. So I think that's where the roots of it started when I and I got married and we moved to India. My path was more in development and social developments, very different.
And he wanted to pursue films. So that's when he joined Lions' Entertainment after that Jungly Pictures. And that's when after a couple of years in the business, it was like, OK, now I know enough. I've developed enough of a network to set up something of my own. And the goal was always to create, you know, content for the youth of the country. And that's how the idea of apocalypses came about. And then, you know, on YouTube came on board.
I came on board. And that's how basically we started. So the way politics is grown, would you see that filter copy still like the main baby or because I know you'll do a bunch of different things that's local? There are if the rumors are to be believed, there's like full fledged films in the pipeline and all of these things also happening. So, I mean, how do you all look at it and how do you look at it at the start?
Because even when someone's trying to start a content based company on YouTube, you know, 22, 23 year old, no teenager will think as white as you raised it. So I feel like there was definitely that element of your professional life prior to joining the world of content that came into play.
But, you know, at that point when you're starting and what was going on in your heads, you know, a percent see, you know, at the time, it was actually very different because, again, Oshman had spent time in the movie business. So this was initially conceptualized as a film production studio, going to make feature films. So actually, for the first year out of pocket, that's what we tried to do. And, you know, there were some very clear realizations.
No one, you know, it's these are high budget projects. So you have to be, you know, already kind of known in this space for somebody to kind of trust you with those money. Secondly, there are many important moving parts that are aligned together. Right. So whether it's the you know, whether it's the artists, you know, the director, the writers, the you know, the actual cast non-direct doesn't make it exactly easier to get to the cast is actually the hardest.
If you're trying to go with, you know, big names, then there's the studios, right. Then, you know, going forward, their distributors, et cetera. So what we realized was that these little becomes remains in your control because it's too expensive to be able to finance anything yourself. And we became just like these people who were running between all these parties trying to put together a project. And we definitely felt in a lot of people in the media business spent years trying to get their first movie made for us.
That time was very important and we definitely didn't want so much time to go by without something tangible to show for it. Right, as an output. So that's when we thought that, you know, this whole business model is not supporting us because, you know, even after we go for a spin, if it's a hit rate, it still takes one year to make a second set. And if it's not, if it doesn't do well, then it takes like two or three years to make a second film.
So this doesn't look like something which would work very, you know, every single day would feel so excited to be in this business. So for us, it was it was that that's how it started. Now, the type of content was very clear. It was like, you know, we had been because of growing up outside of India and spending so much time in the US, we had grown up exposed to all this like good international content.
So we said the youth of India deserves this quality content made specifically for them versus, you know, what's on TV, etc.. And so the type of content was clear, the format of the movies to digital and why digital? Because again, that realisation on the Bonnar is that everybody is like watching on their phones actually. Right, 70 percent of content consumption. And it's happening throughout the day, not just on Friday nights and not just on weekends.
Right. It's happening during commune's it's happening when people wake up, when they're on the board in the middle of work on their way back home right before they go to bed.
So that's when the point is that the format can be so different from this movie format may be thinking about. And as soon as the format becomes sharp, the cost becomes really easy to absorb.
And then as soon as the money's in your hands, the control is also in your hands. And so you can make as much time as you want. You can distribute it and you can. If it doesn't work, that's fine. Next week you can put out another piece of content. If it works, that's great. And you can still do that. So I think the what the cleaning of our previous roles in finance, the way that came into use was because we then after this realization of digital dawned upon us, we researched the heck out of what was happening in other parts of the world in the space as well.
And at that time, BuzzFeed was something that was, you know, growing really, really fast. And a lot of lessons have been from that about how they set up their short video channel and how they used Facebook and YouTube at that time to actually grow organic distribution. You don't have to buy views how to increase engagement. So we launched a lot of lessons, but using such an. Trial and error and experimentation of, you know, 10 of the content that we were putting out, so it was a very systematic approach once we decided to go digital.
And I think that's where it was different from what a lot of people do. It was very it was well researched and it was like this. It doesn't work. Then we tried this Facebook Élysées. The algorithm is shared by the most important that you do. So it's not important. So in the initial days, we actually sided much more towards Facebook because, you know, it's nobody knows you. How is the search for your content? Right.
But on Facebook, if you pop up on people's timelines and they share, you pop up on their phones timelines as well. So it's much less deliberate on Discovery, on Facebook. And that means very lucky because Facebook was just launching had just launched Facebook video in India and we became one of the first creators to go big just because we indexed more on it. And that partnership could help us in very, very good stead. Now you have seven brands, you know, including Photocopy seven content brands, which includes an animation down in the jumbo.
It includes Ozge Infotainment. And in a nutshell, it has our talent management cloud, which recently announced Facebook IPO.
That means the best bread and butter and the largest marketing channel of how people know us. So people think the name of our company is also being used to drive people. Not just that we're just like happy with it. It's like, you know, no aces. But I think the will always remain the biggest market in China. Do you want to go to that place? So any new talent that we launched, even new launch logo used for the copy to promote it and enjoy it.
So. Yeah, right. What with your gowns as the early days of this team, 2014 was a very important year. OK, that's good. That's not too far back. No.
So 2014 was all the same year and then early 2015 was manipulated do and nine September 2015 was our first video release called Bandhan on DVD actually. So the media came before us a copy.
Very few people know that.
Oh wow. That's a testament to the strength of the brand. You know, the fact that you guys are the co-founders of it, which is also probably what I'll be using on the thumbnail.
It's just one of those really powerful YouTube.
So it's films now as well. But OK, I want to I want to actually, I have so many questions because that was a very long description and I enjoyed it. So I have too many questions from especially the early part of this whole journey. On a personal level, what was going on in your lives that you all had to drive so much? And the second question I have is why are the three co-founders are not two or not for like water three of you all bring to the table individually?
OK, it's a loaded question, so I will try to keep in shape. See, I think everything goes back to our upbringing actually in many ways for these two questions. So all two of us are Schwing. I know that I said I'm a born in the very middle class, like service oriented families. We actually are the first entrepreneurs in each of our hands, not entrepreneurs. Before that, my company's is full of engineers and doctors and the family's full of doctors.
Ashton's family's full of airline people, actually, which is which is a different one. So the reason why we felt that time was of the essence was because, you know, we had Wall Street jobs before moving to India. Right. I was working at Goldman Sachs. I was working at Citigroup and I was working at Bank of America and our parents.
That was the dream come true for them. So our parents who universalised generation people who left India, they went to the Middle East. I grew up in Kuwait, saw that. And you saw him. And I knew each other from the standard, by the way, and by and they ended up being college roommates. So for our parents, us being in the US, working in high paying finance jobs was like the dream come true. Right. All they then wanted is these people buy apartments in Manhattan, have children and live happily ever after like that.
That was basically the dream come true. So when they moved to India, Ashwin and I first moved to India. There was an element of family not being happy at all. In fact, I remember my dad being like what they said and quit their jobs and go.
And literally, he was like maybe talking about these all these data back, right? That was like, no, that's not the point. This formula to try something new, you've given us the or the fundamental of a really good education and because of which we got good jobs. But because of that, you can also take risk. And if this doesn't work out, we can always go back.
So we had promised them that if this doesn't work out within two to three years, we will, you know, think of something different and maybe go back. That's why time was of the essence, because we needed to also prove to ourselves and to them that this is something that we can pull off. And these are practical about it. If we weren't able to pull off, that's OK. It's great that you are, you know, but, you know, we would want to do something different.
This is what we thought initially. But of course, this doesn't work like that. We fell in love with being here, doing the different things that we came here to do. And it was a long time. It was we were already in the hospital about five years before our first video released. So that's what we were doing then. So we came to an end 2011. Ashwin was working in the and only and then that's in production model was there for a year and I was working in social development.
So I was touring the entire country, going into villages, working with low income communities, very different from what I did before that or after that. But honestly, it was some of the most fulfilling kind of work, which I did that for about four and a half, five years. And that's when, you know, we pivoted to digital. So we came and we started because I think with entrepreneurs, you know, what we now realize is what matters most is the staying power.
You keep trying something, if it does more to try something else than to try something else. But you're still passionate about the cause that you don't want to lead.
And that's why it was important. Now the time now I realize. So I think being a social entrepreneur is a lonely journey. Right. And I'm hats off to people who do it honestly, because I think it's great to have somebody who has the exact same problems as you. You know, you can be so honest to them.
You can laugh and front of them cry in front of them because, you know, the lows and highs are the same or so when Ashwin initially was in, you know, in the movie business.
And it was his thing that I want to start the company of my own. I think he knew he didn't want to do it alone and came in. I knew Head had started a bunch of things in college together, including like a cricket team and stuff like that. So you did one day.
It was like, if I could do it with anyone in the world, it would be so nice to do it with anyone.
Not our little boys had gone to business school. You also he had followed that path. You would have banking and then private equity and the business school. And he was graduating and looking for jobs. He came to India to stay with us, to look for a finance job. And that's when we kind of like were like, hey, why don't you do this with us and et cetera. And so, I mean, you can always look back to finance.
That's what we do. But it's got down to how many guys. Let's try something new. So I basically joined Ashlynn.
I was like, oh, like an additional advisor on the side because the they were office was our house. But I was still continuing with my development job when we realized that digital requires a lot more people. See my new movie, my movie. You don't need that many people. Right. But digital, as you rightly said in the beginning of the school, you know, it's every day, you know, every day you are thinking of what to put out next and then you want to increase the frequency, etc.
. That's when I came on board, when we pivoted to digital, basically. And, you know, the skill set, I think they're all kind of a little bit of jack of all trades in terms of our tangible skill sets. Also, we have very similar backgrounds, you know, engineering and then finance.
But I think I, um, you know, like non tangible skill sets are very different. So where I come from in that I had because I had worked in in India in social development and I was actually taking high net worth individual money and targeting it towards social work. So I had the you know, the skills in the ABC is gets bigger than that.
But I had done I was obviously, you know, had the content and done and on YouTube, you know, had the marketing part of kind of that's how we initially started. So I was looking at things. She was looking at content and was looking at marketing and of course, over the period of the last four or five years, you know, it's blown lean and mean this, but also overlapped in various ways. I now also look at a lot of content and also it looks like now, which is I think it's a new platform, you know, and and continues to be the majority part of our content and more things right.
Together we do fundraises. We do all of these things sort of on paper. Others may look very similar, but I think the soft skills are quite different from each other.
Yeah, that's an amazing answer, because usually it's not that way. You know, it's it's actually the hard skills which are different and then the soft skills which are similar. This is what I've seen across businesses. Yeah.
You know, I think the most important part about having a co-founder is the trust and respect.
These two are like the number one can see you can hire for skill set. Right. You need a CTO, even highly CTO. You need somebody who will be the head of content. You can hire for that, somebody to manage operations you can hire for that. But this softer aspect of your insecurities with somebody knowing for the fact that these people are not gonna do everything right and be able to be really good friends inside and outside of them, I think that is the most invaluable part of of having co-founders.
The softer skills are actually the most available. And because of an interesting equation I needed and I knew each other independently, Ashwin and a little more each other independently. And then, of course, Ashvin and I imagine so we have an independent equation that has been really helpful. I think it's because each fan has their own equation. So inevitably you will actually be very often see Ashburnham on the nice side more together sometimes. It's not always that often.
And I believe it's actually so fluid and it's beautiful because that's how I come around. So the individual equations also matter a lot is one of us didn't know the third person then I think it would have been a little bit different because then you can pick sides, etc. but it's very, very balanced. So yeah.
Yeah, I feel it's you know, they say that there's matches that are made in heaven, like all marriages are made in heaven sometimes. That's co-founder the relationships that also we didn't it. So it's seeming it's seeming like that right now.
So while I do want to ask you about how you guys raised money, why you guys raise money, how we all thought of scaling up, which is also something I feel that most of the world feels like most people feel that the process of scaling up and going to get it done, like one channel, one distribution line, not multiple things. So I'm going to get all that later. But first, I want to ask you what marriage like.
How is this, like affected or not affected your personal relationship with your husband? Because a lot of people, you don't even feel dating someone from the same industry. I've heard a lot of people say that. They say that all your life will get monotonous. I can't imagine what maybe maybe, you know, at the stage of life you guys are it's easier. But I'm really curious to know how marriage comes in to play even when you're also a co-founder with your spouse.
Yeah, um, you know, I'll be honest with you, it is a very, very fine balance that you have to maintain on a daily basis very, very consciously. See, there are definite pros and cons, right? So, again, the pros are the trust factor. The fact that you are aligned, you know, in many ways to each other, you understand each other's stress. See, entrepreneurship is a stressful journey. Right. And there are long periods of time where you are scared or you are upset or you are worried.
And we understand that so clearly for each other because, you know, we work at the same job pretty much.
Um, and so I think that has been the strongest part of it. The cons are definitely there.
So the fact that I mean, he's also gotten better with it over time, the cons are basically not able to switch off. Right. You come home, you know, even on the commute back, you're at home. You know, you're not very consciously stopping it. You are talking about work on you. The you know, the other is that sometimes you really like how people outside of work, but at work they can be very different humans.
And you may or may not like that.
Right. So I do I do know a lot of people who are very different at work in very different outside work. Your. You have to live with and love that person in both places, it's it's difficult, right?
And the third thing is, you know, that anything that happens at work doesn't really reflect a personal relationship. And if you have a fight at home, does it show in the office? Like, practically. And so it's not easy.
So far, all has been by fumes that are out there. You know, you know, it's it's not easy. And they have to put in the extra effort.
Also, you know, when you are fundraising, when you're doing these kind of things, then your people have these kind of questions as well. Right. Especially for just a couple of as far as we had realized.
So it gets a little bit vindicated now. How have we kind of changed over time? See, it also depends on the kind of couple of you are even involved in completely different jobs, ushering in film and money and social development. We were the kind of couple who discuss our work a lot. So I used to come home. I used to discuss our work a lot. So he knew what's going on in my work, who are my colleagues, etc.
. And these are all they socialize with my colleagues, also his colleagues. And I was also hear a lot about his work.
So we were anywhere, the kind of couple. But the thing is, we didn't have a stake in the other person's story. Right. So you are telling your story. So it's very easy for me to take aside and make you feel better if I don't have a stake in it. But sometimes I'm only on the other side of your story now. So it becomes complicated. I see monetization of this content, you know, the trade that come with this.
He's on one side of it and I'm on the other side of it so that we are we are actually the counterpart to each of us to this as well. So I think that but, you know, it gets complicated. A few years ago, we took a call that we would not discuss work outside of work. All right.
Which means as soon as we leave the office, when we're in the car, this going to stop talking about work at home if we need to talk about what we would like each other.
So this was we had to put this rule only because, you know, those conversations would just never end.
So, again, after this rule, things became a lot more, you know, sort of cleared and stuff at home as well. But, yeah, I think it's a fine balance. It's not easy, but it's a joy like spending all day with each other as well. Otherwise, I think the hours we work, we would see each other maybe two hours a day. So it's enjoy spending time with each other. We consciously are looking at looking at different parts of the business so we don't get into each other's heads on a daily basis.
But when there's a critical decision to take and we debate it out and yeah. And whoever can convince the other people, that's how it works, basically. So so I mean, do you think that, like, going forward you will see like, is it possible to see more entrepreneurs in the world because you don't see this very often? So my hunch is that even you guys are at a much more mature stage of life to be able to handle this and to take that goal of like I don't I don't want to talk about work at home, but or is it actually just very unique to you guys?
You see, I think already in the last 10 years that we've spent in India, we have seen a lot more cupper entrepreneurs like and see, you know, there are two types of businesses see broadly. Right. One is the high growth venture funded, the kind of business. Right. Where you have these metrics and deadlines you have to achieve scalable. And the other half, for example, lifestyle businesses, when it's like slow and steady, that business, you are actually taking out money.
It's funding your own lifestyle. You get big salaries, the profits of the business day in the business, we get better salary. But in the lifestyle business where it's like, you know, the gap is the founder. And then there's a few other employees that funds that their houses also paid for by the other thing that God is on also people.
So it looks like the business may be easier to buy because pressures come out there and you actually see a lot of very successful such businesses with our couples.
Right. Are great examples. Acidy, right. More you. Right. I married to each other. You know, they they are they now have launched a couple of more channels as well.
So I think it's not unique to us. I think any couple can make it work. Their visions have to be aligned and they have to be on the same page on some aspects. Look, I can work longer hours than I should, and he doesn't care. So that and similarly. Vice versa, but I feel like a lot of women don't have that kind of support system. Right. And you know, something personal as well, like, for example, we decided that you don't want to have kids, at least for the time being, and we'd be nicer than those.
So the pressures from those families are quite high. I think it's easy for us to make such a decision because we are also working together. Was this if I was doing something as he was doing something else, maybe it would have been more difficult to make such a decision. So I think that as long as you are supporting each other, you are understanding that you both have ambitions of a certain kind and you would want to grow and you leaving space for imperfections because nothing is possible as long as that understanding is there.
And you can also, once in Boston, have like a full blown nice fight. So it's healthy.
I think it's healthy if you can do all of those things and then it can work like anyone.
There's nothing special that we are doing. Got it. Beautiful.
I love all the sort of the lifelong poet William. It's fantastic. It's a beautiful.
Yeah. The funny thing is that he's a cop. He's a moderate. He's a mediator. He's learned he's also he's one of the ways in which we met like I've had individual conversations with you both.
It's not spoken. Not that much, but especially you do. I know. I know. Well, now I feel like at least I have a gauge of who we all are as people. So I get why it works both really extremely calm, mature and at the same time really fast and goes. So I think there's that whole engineering factor also where that's what engineering does still generally like you go through that grind with or 22 and your whole mindset kind of switches up for the rest of your life.
You see, everything is bad and solutions. So there's something nonentities for you to do, understand what you actually say. Engineering, the experience of engineering has been a big factor in you ways of traveling through this new photography part easily.
And also I'll speak for myself personally. I feel that my entire college experience has been a huge factor in that and things I did engineering, but at Princeton, which is a liberal arts school. So while I was doing my engineering degree, I was I did a dance minor, which means that I was taking dance classes every semester for a grade. And this is also theory and practical. I was taking philosophy, sociology that. So I think that that education really opened my thinking out.
And I think the key thing that I learned or took away from my college was that I can do anything that I want to do. So anything that I put my mind to, I can achieve, of course, with a lot of hard work and discipline, etc..
Um, but I'm just the analytical thinking that engineering teaches you right, that, T.J., you have this thing which is broken. How do you fix it? There's a very solution oriented mindset and all these sort oriented mindset on, you know, that if there's no problem that is impossible, you can figure it out and you break every question to its basics. Right. But just like its first principles and try to figure out the answer from that. So I think that helped us.
You know how because see, the outsiders in this business, even when we came to digital, all these big agencies that are out there. So, of course, you know, people told us all, go talk to the agencies. You know, that's how they introduce you to brands and et cetera, et cetera. When we ended up with the agencies, they were all like, who are you guys? I tell you, done a few videos.
I tell you a few videos have worked very, very well. KCK but basically they dismissed us. Right.
And I think the of perspective of ours was basically like, OK, the spots didn't go to another part of it were tied, but so we tried many different ways of making the same thing work.
And we went to brands or directly and actually even today, like over 90 percent of our business comes directly in. They're not agency dependent at all, which I think was a very, very strong kind of ecosystem that we built. So similarly, there were many such problems that everybody was doing YouTube first because of our research, we did Facebook first, and that was a huge advantage initially because on Facebook we had no competition. So I think that engineering the exposure to the finance, they'll be able to speak the language of the cameras, see if somebody spending money with me.
I'm able to speak the language of how the budgets work, how they want to see a return on investment, on the money they're spending on these. That really helps as well.
You don't convert that business, so from various point of views, I think engineering is breaking down the problems, questioning everything, not taking anything sort of given, and hence finding our own solutions and the finance background and the exposure has had it just, I think, being confident enough that you can understand various people's perspectives and convince them that, you know, you can deliver value because you understand what they're looking for.
At what stage do you guys think of raising money? And why did that question even arise? Is it because you wanted your had a good vision of where l wanted to be in five, six years? Because I'm asking you this, you know, because, like, generally the content world doesn't want to play around with the financial world. Too much of the world generally is mostly a bunch of kids kind of creating their own videos, creating their own content.
And they don't want that added tension of having investor backing. Having done so, you know, all the people about their profits or whatever their performance in the year. So I'm sure they do finance background had a role to play there. But on a deeper level, I like entrepreneurs. What were you guys thinking? Like you have a certain vision for? I want to be here in 2020. That's why we need to raise money right now.
What was going on I want to be here in 2020 is definitely top 20. But but I had this huge asking.
See, I think it depends a lot on personal ambition. Right. What is it that you want to do? So I think it's great to like be a creator who is hugely loved like you are and so many others are, you know, in our ecosystem. That's also a fantastic, you know, kind of part to be for yourself, but for us, one less talented folks who are not like funny and headingley all done well inherently for us automatically.
We have to look at it as how can we add value? And our value comes from the management side. Right. And the business front. So automatic because we are not individually creators. Right. So ideally, we have built our, you know, a creator creator company and many creator brands. And some of the most important in movies are all creators. Right. But individually they are not that so far as it was. How can I set up, you know, media business that can actually create great content for the youth of India?
Now, it was not what I envisioned, Mumbai. So, for example, anything that I spent time on doing in the world, I wanted to be to leave a legacy behind. All right. Which means that after I go, it should be allowed.
And so that, again, you can rely on an individual says you have to build the company for that which can function even when you're not doing equally well. Right. So if you look at us, you won't see us committing our own content, being the face of our own content, because that's not the good.
It's not do individually make ourselves really well, no, not really big to the public. That would be nice. But our goal is to set up things which last way beyond, you know, our lifetimes.
So when you think about it that way automatically, you know, the path you follow is building a team. Right. And then when you think about, OK, you want to entertain the youth, you want to solve their boredom, which is the mission of our company. You got to solve the problem in Lonzie, right?
Because there is so much to so many different interests that they have. They also like sports. They also like entertainment. They also like shopping. They also like something else and superheated. Kalki, how can you solve various minutes of boredom during their day? That is how we are looking at it. So by definition, you have to build. It's like it's like a Lego block. You have to add one block on top of the other.
So when you think about it that way automatically, you know, you are building multiple things. You are working with many people. And for that you need to do so if you have capital and if you come from if you come from wealth, then you can put your own capital. And honestly, it's great to be your own boss. It's great to not answer to anyone. But I do think being able to answer to external bodies brings a certain discipline and governance.
Right. Discipline. I think everybody understand what I mean by governments is how you run your company, how.
Clean, is it all? What you doing? What do you allow other people to do? The culture of it? Right. That is basically, you know what and many others, you know, sort of the realities and legal factors. I'm good. I'm good. Well governed company. And that is when the person is sort of keeping an eye on you. I think you do that really well. So the foundation set is very, very strong because imagine you went to a state school.
So obviously, you know, your foundation is strong and then you can build on it and you know many things. You can build on it because your foundation is. So that is the way I would look at it. Also, I think we're trying to change the face of Indian media also in a way. So the ambition is that right? Tomorrow, why can't we be talked about in the same breath as one of these really large media conglomerates, whether it's a Disney or a star or a Sony or somebody else?
Right. We want to be talked in the same breath. We want to be large. We have global aspirations. We want the big Indian stories outside of India. So I think that's the thing. What do you want to build paves the way then of how you build it and what it was like coached by other language?
That was the kind of movie.
Yeah, I feel I mean, then correct me if I'm wrong and I'm honestly asking you this just as a young entrepreneur, probably because you have experience with Wall Street as well as this content media entrepreneurship world. Is it fair to say that a lot of content companies or media companies don't scale because of a lack of culture and because of a lack of, you know, that just that growth mindset? That's what I seem like, at least around me with people my age.
People don't care about things like a company culture that much like I saw on your website I'm sorry, on the Apocalypses website, you guys had one entire section about just culture. This is our culture. This is why you should join us. And I thought that was so fantastic. Like, Oh, you don't. I mean, I'm I'm sure that when someone tells you all of this, they're going to see those same ideals. But in a more practical way, you'll see people acting out the culture.
Exactly. So definitely. Yeah, like I feel culture is one question for you that does that play a role in scaling up? Because I kind of feel it does from where I start. And the second is this lack of growth mindset. I feel too many people play extremely safe games in our world and there isn't enough risk taking ability. I might be wrong, but that's just what I've observed.
Everyone's basically. Yeah.
You know, I'll answer the second question first. Again, there is no right or wrong, right? I think it's totally fine to have a risk taking ability. It's also fine to see if you are. But yes, I do think there are several due to digital media businesses today that actually can be much larger than they are or if there was that growth mindset, was there. Right. So I think people take it as a given that I cannot compete with these large conglomerates.
But you can. And why can you? Because you have some advantages that both do it. You are much closer to the actual audience in terms of age behavior. By doing so, you understand the audience much, much better be. You are much more nimble. You can take decision today and implement it tomorrow, then the afternoon can change it as well. Right. It doesn't get you people pushing off many, many months to get a new thing implemented, not team.
They have grown on the back of cable television. Not a single large incumbent media company today has really figured out social distribution on digital. They have now launched their platforms, but nobody has figured out the largest distribution, which is social distribution we all have. That's a huge advantage. Back today. We are reaching fifty million people who can claim that, right. So because we are growing on the back of this platform. So I think people always look at the advantages that the large companies have and feel unlimited.
Unlimited. I mean, no, I mean, but they forget about the advantages that they themselves do have that those bigger companies don't. So I think that, yes, there is definitely a mindset where Sugan is if you have decided to Miramax Holga, and I do encourage people to to challenge. You know, many more incumbents and I mean, look at some of the large videos on YouTube today, whether it's you, whether it's proven or she's Angeliki or Project Tarcoola or I mean, all of you guys are individuals, of course, backed by your own management companies and you're doing human history.
Well, there's more reason why you can do even more right. With what you're already doing. So a hundred percent, I think that that mindset is and I think it also depends on little bit of the training.
So who is there to tell you guys these things? Right. I think that's where we would actually personally, I would love to play a role where we can help entrepreneurs figure out how to scale media beyond one or two channels because one or two channels, I think people have done an amazing job like way beyond.
Right. But what more can they do is something that would be really nice for us to all brainstorm together. And I'm sure all those have some ideas that we can use as well, because for us also every day you have to push yourself to think about new things. Innovation is a part of the culture, but it's a very deliberate part of the culture. BORKE What they set out in what you already have. Right. And you have also had phases and this is coming to the culture, but you have also had phases in a broad journey where we grew slower than we want to and some places where they grew faster.
It's a very deliberate effort, right, that you want to grow. You want to solve boredom, which means you want to get more attention minutes, which means you have to launch more things. People have more interest than just watching one type of content, whether it is have kids or whether they shot video or whether it is, you know, different things on gaming has been a hugely different story for us. We had to learn everything from scratch.
We knew nothing about gaming, but we thought this is the right time to look at the handle. Why can't we do it? That was the thought process, the culture. There are many aspects to it. And we see I think, number one, you have to listen to what younger people in our team have to say. Look, I am 36. I am getting a real farther and farther away from the audience, the core audience, which is younger.
Then any new person who joins me completely correct. I have to listen to what they are, what they have to say about which new platforms are cool now, what audiences are watching, how behaviors are changing. So I think that's a strong part of our culture. There's actually no hierarchy when it comes to debates and decision making, and everybody's deliberately asked to be intellectually very humble. So I will never say if you give them an idea, I guess I'm doing it to be taught.
Never. Those kind of things can never be said Apocalypses, because you might know much better than me, because I'm right at least about a few things.
Secondly, I think the one thing that happens in every media company, which I think is the biggest downfall to scale, is the WHO, the hierarchy of not just the junior, but who is more important subsea important actors.
Let's give our director was given the right to give out a better job than was given Pakistan. Right. That's not the case at all, especially in digital. And advocate is not at all. So whether you are the biggest face of our time or you are a finance guy in our finance team, if you guys are at the same level of resignation, you get paid the same. You repeated the same week. There is no high side. I am a divorce and boys and girls in our company at all.
And I think this is a huge factor for success of Pincus, who can come up the because without feeling guilty, I'm not one of the more important people in this company because everybody is treated the exact same way. And I know many, many companies that have this got this culture and that's the big downfall. So we believe those companies come to us, given the opportunity to report there. That's just beyond anything that we have ever thought of. Capable people could be taking the time that got I was upset.
I'll give it up. Right. And because of that, we have grown managers.
He clearly does. In general in this world, a few regular people can learn no skill and become good managers. When you have good managers, those managers can manage new challenges. They can manage growth, they can think about new ideas and they can provide quickly does as well. So this is why culture innovation is so important. So I'll give you an example, we recently set up something called the Audience Insights Committee. We felt that as we were growing and the company wanted to bring over 200 people, that we were moving away a little bit from talking to our audiences, directly answering those comments and engaging in that banter, which we used to do much more when we were smaller.
So we've set up this committee, which they're actually picking up the phone and talking to audiences directly. And there's a team of eight people is a special task force type of committee. And so we ran it as an application process. People were very excited to do it in addition to their regular work. And we've talked to hundreds of people directly on the phone and about the quality of insights are just different to what people are watching. How are they spending their time?
What do they like? Not like and we didn't really ask questions about Bacardi's is in our content. We just asking them about their likes and dislikes in general. And that feeds into what movies create, what new channels we launched, which new platforms we launched on. So I think it's very important and this was a new thing they've never done before in our history. It's important to keep doing these new things right and the realigning your mission to, you know, to the real or something, which is the audience.
Once they are happy, everybody will come back. I will come to you as well. So, yeah, you don't because you guys work with so many young people also. And I know I know that because I don't know whether it was out of confidence or one of these panels we've been on. But you had mentioned how I think there's Ashwin. Actually, someone had asked him, how do you keep content relevant? And he's like the solution as you keep hiring younger and younger talent.
By that he means every year there's going to be new 22 year old will be even closer to your target audience. Exactly. So that's the actual key. But I'm sure that six years in, you've also seen a pattern of how 22 year olds are evolving. So from where you stand and also, again, in the field of content, you get our top view of things. You understand how audiences minds are changing. So what would you say about the youngsters of today, like the 22 year olds, 21 year olds of today?
And what would you say about how content is evolving in the YouTube slash social media game to the young set of today is very different from when you we were like 22 year olds. So we were to keep your head down, do the work you've been told to do, learn in the process. Right. I think the answer as of today has the think about their purpose in life much earlier then. You know, we used to think about our purpose in life.
So I think when they arrive in their first job, they already know what they are passionate about. They already know what they want to do in life. Very often it might not. It might change, actually, and it might not be so formalized. But they have a much better idea.
I think they also are much more close to taking shit from people. All right. So I think goods and bads, so the goods of this are you get people with a lot more clarity on who have opinions, who will not think even a second to, you know, see something back to you and say, I don't agree with you, which is a good thing on the cons. I think they do get bored very quickly. They do get impatient.
There is a there is a culture of wanting quick gratification.
You know, I've been looking so hard for the last six months. It's only been six months. And so there is a there is a one for quicker gratification. So I think that the the way to work very, very closely and in perfect harmony with every batch of 22 year olds is that you evolve a little bit and you pay them a little bit.
You also have to evolve. You also have to change your mindsets to what is now working in the company, how they just what and they're all in or, you know, what time you know, how many small breaks did it, like, blah, blah, all of it. You also have to, as a company, evolve. Right, and decide like what's to with you, what not what's not working with you. And the cleaning part is very important.
But you also have to tell them that, look, these 10 things, according to these last two things, according to how the company works, be patient. You. Get your view, see, the good thing about our sector is a young person can come and join a company and then you will have one month later, right. They can actually do that. So keep showing them that their voice matters, their opinion is taken into account and they will get their due.
And that's it. You're on your own. You have to make sure you keep them engaged, which also keeps you innovating. Because if I don't want to lose my back, my budget, 22 rules, I have to give them something interesting to do next year. So by definition, you evolve and grow as a company. So I think that's what I would say. These are the pros and cons and definitely you do. You also need some of your managers to be OK with this?
Because, you know, you find a lot of people complaining about benefits. Right? But, hey, they're the future. So we also have to evolve. So that's that's the way I would look at that. So do you have another part of your question, which I missed? The other question was, how is content evolving? Because, again, you're speaking with that same audience that you're hiring.
Yeah, it's because I mean, you know, this is becoming super UGC oriented, right? Audiences are now creators, right? They have a voice. What is what is UGC oriented? Could you explain it for the listeners? Yeah.
So basically, you, you know, user generated content. Right. Oriented, which means your short video about Solms of the word by the stick talk and several other similar apps.
People are not shy anymore in that is to be a shy, camera shy kanji. Mimicry is used to happen behind closed doors in some of the parts of the Midwest right now. It's very, very different. Even in the two cities, people have the confidence of turning on their cameras and dancing to it or mimicking it and putting it out for the world to see. I think social media is giving people social gratification. You are able to build a persona online that may not be your real life persona.
So you are able to live your dream by a little bit with open eyes. Right? I want to become famous. It's easier to become famous now, at least in your local ecosystem. It's easier to showcase a talent. It's easier to make money doing that. So I think content is totally evolving towards democratization. So while the highly produced big budget shows that we make and other people make, then the big budget shows that we make and then the small budget side for doing that, we make the produced content.
It will of course remain. But more and more you're going to see volumes of consumption happening on user generated content. Just because there is it's limitless. There's no there's no limit to that content.
So I think that is one big evolution that you're seeing in people's behaviors as well as content. That seems the other big thing that will come is slowly but surely back in content, whether it's virtual reality or augmented reality and stuff like that. I know these words are like very overused, but, you know, if I can watch a show that I can replace the actress's face with my own, that's going to give me a lot of pleasure to watch.
And so that going will start the watch parties see that that tech is not really working right now. Then together we want to watch something remotely. It's very, very mediocre that's renewable. So I think this one remote working around the world, you can watch with anyone, friends and family, that will evolve even on Glynne. It's all about the Seamans, right? Sorry, mother, nothing. But, you know, people who play well and you don't want to show off their skills.
So if I have to say number one content archim it's user generated content. Will Bacardis be in Benos while I know that I'm 100 percent sure you're not planning that far ahead because you got to play that game. Only think of your next step. But watch your hands right now. If I just throw that question I do. What would you like to see in like two thousand thirty.
See, I would just like to see us being talked among people who change the landscape of how people were consuming content in India and maybe around the world as well. They changed what people were consuming, how people were consuming, how they were creating. So, yeah, I would just like I think we would like to see Barclays's is amongst the large media conglomerates globally having, you know, created a path for young creators to start. From scratch then, you know, creating these types of content and then create your lab shows or movies or whatever.
That's definitely for creators and their part. That is also something they're very, very cognizant of. So that's why creators to want readers to leave, right? Because you want them to also you want to give them also better, better opportunities and for the audiences as well. And I'd like to be one of those people who people like audiences, are spending a lot of time consuming borreliosis on related content. So solving boredom and creating the making a dent in the content ecosystem.
These are you know, these would be the two things. I'm going to change gears up completely and make it about me of people like myself. I mean, like, you know, because you guys have scaled up a content company so much. The obvious game that individual creators need to be playing is that game of skill that you spoke about it earlier in the broadcast where you said that, you know, why not have more channels than that? Honestly, even even though individual creators life has a lot of cons that aren't spoken about enough on the Internet, I'm not talking about the head or the mental health issues, but I think one massive is time because we're supposed to give our face and our physical bodies so much to the camera like this, so many business ideas I have, which I nawash or short successes because I've understood business by this point of my life and I really want to execute on those.
But it's just not I don't have the time for it. And I probably have not found my you know, I have an amazing hiles, but I've not found that one be more than one co-founder who'll help me create what I wish to create. The other governors are doing an incredible job. That's why they are both founders and they're running their own things. But there's even more ideas. And because you're constantly reporting on so much content, you get again, you get a bird's eye view of what the audience needs.
So you know what is possible next. But because I'm giving it people some of my time to podcasts and camera work, it doesn't give you much time for thinking about raising money and thinking about scaling at that level, which I'm actually trying to fix, or the next one or two years I'm bringing in people and my team will do exactly that will be a Xerox copy of myself to be able to scale up things even better. But the question I have for you is like, how do you see this individual creative ecosystem?
Because if you know, the West is to be followed, which is usually what happens in India, like whatever happens in America or Europe ends up happening in India. Traditionally, I hope it means that it's changed. So, yeah, I mean, I hope that that change becomes even stronger. Yeah, but do you think I mean, we see a lot of Western creators fading away over time. People either get bored, they are done with it or by and they've made enough money and they're like, OK, I don't want any of that stuff, that brutality anymore.
When we go for all these international forums, you'll hear a lot of international creators saying things like, we like to go to Wilbury because I was just done with it. Or, you know, it does get mentally taxing for one person, especially when all the stakes are dependent on us like one individual human. So for me, mostly meditation helps a lot deal with all that. But I've seen people go through a lot of shit because of that individual pressure.
So my question to you is what your whole viewpoint on the whole individual creator life and what's their best case scenario like? Where will the top creators be in 10, 15 years? It's difficult for me to answer whether the doctrine is being benzophenone is, of course, because it because it depends on so many factors. And, you know, I don't understand I can't seem to understand, you know, all of those factors very well.
But what I can what I will share is like my ideas are like two ways in which you can do the kind of scale work that you want to do. Day one, B is C, and there's a lot of advantages of being an individual creator. Right.
So, for example, remember, we showed up at Whistlin Woods for that and everybody knew who you are and nobody knows my face. Right. So that's a huge advantage to being the face. How do you use that advantage is basically what you have to figure out, right? Whether it is to raise money or to start more things, etc., etc..
So I could see this in the see one. If you really love what you're currently doing and that challenge that you're currently running, but you have more entrepreneurial ideas, I think it's actually not very hard to find entrepreneurs for those ideas and find them a little bit along with the idea itself. Right. So, for example, Supergiant idea, you know, the idea if you guys are discussing one of the ideas that you had so say on people. Right, and then you figure it out because you have the experience, how much little bit of seed money will it take to kick this off, etc.
, You'll find somebody to do that for you, right in that manner.
I'll see you all soon. You do it even though it's your concept that person is and you do it but left in that person. So you definitely have the ability of getting somebody who you think would be really good and what you're advising them as well. So you're not going anywhere. And you also own a lot of part of the new company that you set up. Right. Or new initiative that you launched by definition, and that was entirely new.
Also own some part of it.
A lot of entrepreneurs I know are doing things like that where they came up with the idea they are getting another another person to actually become the executive founder. They are like the non executive founder who is not going to be working on that deal. Like an adviser. They're like a chairman, whatever you might want to call them. And they are guiding on how this should be done so that when you actually build your set of companies as well, but you might not be spending like all the time, the company you want to continue may be doing your work because your look gives value to your face, which then helps you do things which other people might not be able to do, like raise money, like do X, Y, Z.
There are many huge advantages to being an artist, right?
That's one way to do it now. Another way to do it is for people, creators who now feel what a similar type of content. But also now I want to do something different. You could also be in the spirit one channel and do like slowly evolving into the same kind of content. That's one. You could start adding pieces to your own videos, but I suppose I need to get the copy. Use this too often because see, after an actor has been introduced for a while, then they kind of want to like do other things as well, even though the new short video is a great marketing tool for them.
But they also want to do other things. So, for example, with one all very, very loud says, we will add two, three new faces, whether it's a male or a female, that doesn't matter. And because this video will do well because of this face, this face was also started working and being loved by the audience. Then you slowly dig this place out and this face becomes bigger. Then you learn to coexist on the back of the second phase.
Then you learn to form the new lines. You understand what I'm saying to you. So, for example, one channel, if you started introducing C more faces who were caught delivering the content with you, and they also say, you know what the audience likes. So you it's possible for you to find another place that Jordan sex and then slowly, if it's OK, if it's a few videos that are not there.
But this other person is that that we also love the audience. So that's another way to do it. And that frees up your bandwidth to then start something else and then start something else again.
I would recommend inevitably get something that you're very, very good at. Don't like it. You can get you you can take time away from it and also never lose the relevance.
It's a very strong 100 percent even an icon. And people remember the actors, you know, they and they of course they remember which was the channel, but they don't remember anything else. So the first is that's just how the world works. So these are two ways in which it's very tangible. First one has been done by many entrepreneurs, because even if I'm running a business but I have another idea how good I can enjoy find a small another entrepreneur who is completely in my guidance to launch.
Got it, while this is a brutal question to ask. I'm still going to ask it like, do you see any mistakes done by individual creators or, you know, just individual brands that are being bailed out on social media like that one act or slash influence or slash you do? Well, what are the mistakes done by these people?
Because I'm sure that you guys have I mean, we all kind of on that same grassland, you know, off content. So you do understand, okay, that giraffe is playing it all the zebras playing wrong. So what would you like, say are the mistakes of individual creators?
See, I wouldn't say that there are any mistakes because honestly and I'm not being diplomatic any have any legal system still. Right. And there are several individual creators who are very, very large at fault. So keeping those aside, the other batch that are somewhere in the middle, I think not a mistake, but my advice to them would be like, you know, find your own voice, because you do see a lot of it. And I think I need honesty.
You have done an amazing job, but that content is not like any other individual creator on on in the ecosystem. Right. It's very, very different. You found your niche fondness shank. People look out to you for life lessons. That's a different type of looking at. Right. Similarly, I would see smaller creatures that are growing. Find your strength in each sketch comedy is great, but is that something that you want to do? When everybody is doing it?
You can do something else also. And what is that? So that's basically what I would do with advice on it. I think it's too early to tell if mistakes are good or your team don't just rely on what you're saying. It's very easy to one out. I know it's a very hard job and it's very and it's how innovation gets guessing if they're not just talking about the same stuff. Innovate teams get a business understanding. I think a lot of individual creators don't understand business.
They rely on their managers or they rely on friends or they actually do monetize how much they can monetize. I would say get a business understanding, get a business partner. Don't think business is the lower part of the job. It's not exactly as it keeps the lights on, it improves your lifestyle. So I do think individual creators get monetized much, much better than they currently are and think big. I know some creators have launched like merchandise and their own lines and there's a lot bigger you can go.
I know there are things need that are collaborating with internationals and there is so much to be done. Get advice. And you know, the same people you got advice from when you were starting out, like, of course, those are your best friends and those are close is bad news. But try to get advice on different types of people because maybe somebody will give you an idea.
You had not thought about it. So basically and all in on street to do do what you want to do in life. Not everybody wants to go in the same vein. So stayed true to whatever, you know, how you want to live your life.
So I'm coming back to Pocket Aces. Now, at this stage, you're kind of the blueprint for a lot of these content holders, like people who look at you and say, OK, I want to go down that, but. So what are like a couple of things you have done correct in scale in the in the process of scaling according to yourself, what will you look back and say? OK, these two things or three things were the best decisions for the overall journey and obviously going to ask you about the challenges at this stage.
So I think no one would be very basic. When we started our digital journey, we didn't just blindly align with one platform that everybody was aligning with. We did our research. We aligned with Facebook. That really helped us because suddenly we were different from the other people and more people then came to know about us. So I think that was decision number one. I think decision number two, we've hired a lot of people who have come from various walks of life.
Right? Not people who are who have come only from the media background, etc.. And I think plus we have people from the media background. So I think the type of theme we have and the diversity of ideas. It is just amazing and the culture we've set up to hear all those ideas, that it wasn't that they needed something, definitely the second the people and the diversity of people on the third one, I think is like launching our own app for gaming.
I think it was the right time. You know, we've also evolved. It was squeezing then it was hypermasculine. And then we added streaming and eSports. It's a huge market and a lot of people told us this is very different from what you guys do, etc, etc. But we felt that it's another kind of content and it's very powerful because gaming is a very repeatable kind of content. Say even our best website is Orsi Friends.
Right. But globally, like Best Kreis, everybody likes to watch again and again. I'm a huge fan. I watch maybe all the seasons, maybe 10 times, but if I like a game, I think it poisons of names. So when it comes to repeatability of content and hence solving boredom, gaming is is an amazing genre. So I think that was a great decision.
Got it. And what are your challenges at this stage?
Just the overall, although lots of challenges just feel that. Um, so our number one challenge is how do we grow our new China?
So that includes our animation channel, Jambo, our infotainment a nutshell, as well as the gaming look. All right. How do we grow it for the more and more? I think the number two challenge is how do we grow our presence? Right. Because that is something we definitely are doing currently. And it's not easy because, you know, it goes back. It's reminiscent of the film business in many ways where there are a few bios and a few decision makers.
See, luckily for us, we got success very early on in the digital cycle with little things. Right.
So and because we're well known in the ecosystem, we have the relationships, but everybody wants could I mohanned, you know, cool and stuff like that.
So staying true to what you believe is your kind of content and still making large scale what it is that something that we are currently doing. And, you know, it's an uphill battle, a good one at that.
I think in I think the individual access execs love that content, but they are always scared because it's like, OK, there's something new for the subscriber audience subscribers. You don't think that they should pay for very expensive shows, etc. So you get on. So there are some of these preconceived notions what as time comes, you know, that will also evolve. And I think, you know, this covid has been a challenge that I think is for all of us, all creators, we could and should increase since March all the way to September.
That's definitely taken a hit not just on the business, but also on the slate, people's motivations, etc.. So I think the challenge is that in ups and downs of the world, how do you keep marching forward? How do you keep your head up? How do you keep two hundred and thirty people motivated? And how do you stay through the audiences and not have these pressures?
And now everything is coming back to work. You people are, you know, staying true to your audience.
And I think that's one of the challenges I would like to add, which is not just for us, but in general in the content ecosystem on scale. See, all of us have to figure it out. There is only that much content that we can physically create content. So for us, we hire more people, we can create more content.
So it's a linear group. What do you do to get exponential growth? How do you use what you've built to grow faster than those three videos a week? That is something that we're thinking about very, very closely and we have some cool idea. So I think in a few months, if we don't, you'll see these lots, some new initiatives, which is how can we scale beyond just scaling content?
Right. What do you what do you think? That's a very interesting point. In fact, that's something I've been thinking about for the podcast a lot. I just want to bring in a few nuggets about podcasting you. So I feel that while there is a massive podcasting wave that's going to hit the country, currently the supply is much more than. Demand, I see the numbers we do on our audio streaming platforms, and it's not that great right now, but we're still the number one broadcast in the country and then more and more countries like thinking like this.
So I'm very hopeful about the future for sure. Another very voice oriented country, already oriented country. But there isn't that much space for that many players. And this is not a very optimistic person. I'm just giving you the ground reality of what's happening in that space. The game with broadcasting is much more than just creating, you know, audio content. You can just sit and talk about random things that we are following the conversation. There's an art of broadcasting.
You either get entrepreneurs or you make your guests comfortable. That's the other aspect of it. And, you know, I mean, there's just too many dynamics that people take for granted. So I always ask myself that question, how do I get more people to not listen to the podcast? Because I know it's not everyone's cup of tea, but at least know about the board doesn't make us stronger. Broadcasting brand. Yeah, and the solution I had is, wow, OK.
Now, because I've used my own camera equipment for this, I have access to all this raw material. It's about what I can repurpose the raw material for. So we're experimenting now with the shotgun and we're experimenting now with highly edited videos. And that's my hunch for the way forward. And I feel like I'm a seasoned content creators, so I kind of know what will work, like I have it that little bit of that instinct.
But my point of seeing all this is you need a think tank within your team, which can't only be you. And I'm at that stage of hiring right now from a government perspective. But I need a few kids, not the 22 year olds, to think of how we can repurpose what we can use it for. And obviously, there's the whole dynamic you have while hiring. You want to ensure that there's similar culturally to you. They're motivated and all that.
I'd like for you to break down like what your learnings are about this whole scaling up process. How do you scale through other people's minds?
Like what have you learned about it on Meet Them Apart or the brainstorm and make them believe they own certain ideas from the brainstorm? I think if people feel like owners, they go above and beyond in actually putting the hard work in implementing. And of course, you have to put a discipline around the whole thing. Right. So it kind be like telling them to an example of design thinking, you know, is a is a vehicle to do brainstorming, getting empathy exercises with the client, the audience you want to serve, then brainstorming, then focusing and then implementing.
So I would recommend following. And it's a very, very well known, very practice to design. Thinking is a great way to involve other people in brainstorming and then feeling like they own the idea. And then, of course, implementing is the next step. So I would say go with one of these type of things and design them. Idea you have not asked me for it, but like you talked about, you describe what about you? Would you support us if you had to think about how you can scale podcast beyond 24 hours that you as we have.
Right. How about you ask the same questions and hundreds of people answered, how would that work?
Suddenly scale looks very different. So and got it. And suddenly it looks you can reach different types of people because you are not investing for you to invest two, three hours of your life to force record interview with edit blah blah, blah. It takes a long time so you don't have to find only a few people who you really want to interview. But somehow, somehow, if it took only half an hour of your time for podcast you created and you were still happy with that quality of the podcast, you would suddenly think very differently about the type of people and you can interview anyone or many different people also.
So I would actually encourage you to think on that front key you are creating a revolution revolution.
Canonically, Moss is important. That is a critical mass.
And then there's a mass about that. Also, the kind of focus that you do, I like really amazing. And they are meant for a certain type of audience. What if you had to modify it enough? Yeah.
Which which is going to be our next episode, maybe three months later.
OK, so basically that's what I'm saying. Put it put up with other parking lot. Different ideas can come. OK, how many people do you reach weekly on your channel on YouTube? Approximately like, uh, we do like seven, eight million views a month. So divided by four, say, two million.
I think it'll be a lot more than that because you're going to be a lot to speak to in India. What else can you do with those two million? Right now, you're showing them a few videos a week, but you have their attention. They look up to all the capacity we need, only look as out as fortunate enough to value nothing. Then let's talk about this channel, this broadcast.
This human. Then it is your value start to go viral. And that's how you should do that. Brainstorming exercises. Cos normally, normally. Would you like those men that have gathered there like you could do the sun and the moon if we could take these two million people a month, like would you do that or do something else. So I think there are ways in which you can run these brainstorms to remove blogs from our own heads as well.
Mm hmm. I mean and, you know, I know it's a very not usually ask people the three life lessons, but since we're ending this broadcast speaking about design thinking, could you could you kind of give us a summary of what design thinking is? Because my content is both from the outside and after speaking with you is that it's been a massive part of how you, all of you will grow to unveil the copy. And it's also something that's not taught in Indian schools.
So could you explain it just from a very practical perspective and also maybe suggest people, some books or some sources of knowledge that they can turn to or movies that they can turn to for inspiration, slash useful tools?
Yeah, for sure. See a sort of design thinking. We also kind of consciously implemented it only a couple of years ago and how we actually got very conscious about it because we were part of this Stanford program. OK, this is what the Centre for Policy Transformation program. It's a brilliant program for young companies that are looking to scale. Writing touches upon all aspects about how we should plan for your transformation. Right. And so on. So design thinking is basically a tool to help you come up with new ideas to do new things.
It has four main steps. Step one is empathy, where you learn about the clients or the audiences or whoever you're creating this product for. Step two is flat rate fler means go crazy. No judgment, no discussion. Any idea works once you've basically understood the problems of your clients that you want to solve. You frame a statement around which a problem statement and on which you want to brainstorm. So, for example, how might we provide more entertainment to the two million people who follow the news channel?
Simple question and then becomes a flat exercise where you just go and brainstorm, any idea works, OK, anything from let's open a gym to like let's take them to Mars. Anything looks like no judgment. And you do this with a group of people. Then the next step is you start putting some constraints. OK, keep this idea of the planet, OK, that could be one constraint, you could say, hey, keep this idea under a hundred dollars, right?
Keep this idea implementable via email. So people. Right, then you start putting constituents, basically. And that's how you start narrowing down some of those ideas and then you reach, maybe set or stop five or ten ideas that you then talk about as a team and try to pilot maybe three of them. Right. And people from within that exercise become or none of those pilots and basically take it forward. So it makes people feel that you are big participants in the journey of the creation of this product, and hence they have different ownership that.
Now you can go to Stanfords de la website, which is their design web website online, and you can find you can actually run on design thinking exercise in your company model because they have the free tools of how to do it. And they start with something simple, like let's design a gift to give to somebody, you know, just to get you to know what is a design exercise and then take it forward.
So there are many such courses on the site for the lab that I would recommend as directly implementable stuff. Yeah, I think this is the kind of stuff that actually helped initially break out and generally break out, but you all have brought that Western flair to an Indian product, which is, you know, what people say about, OK, you should go to USA to study and then maybe later, if you want to do a business, you can bring back your learnings from there.
That's not what everyone does.
But I feel like that's what you guys have done, this Stanford program to let to go. So we keep going constantly upgrading ourselves as well, which is very important.
OK, and the final question for you is, because this is a women's entrepreneurship sort of series.
We started on the podcast. The girls who joined Monck Entertainment and Biceps were the ones with a real game changers for us. Like I remember specifically, you know, the kind of inputs they gave, which just changed stuff up completely.
So what does what does that feminine energy add to the whole entrepreneurial game, according to you? Because I know that even on I would have thought of something when they said, OK, you know, that they should be brought on as a co-founder. So, like, what what what do you think?
See, it adds diversity and hate. Honestly, that itself is the biggest thing. So I would never even see that it should be an all women team or anything like that, because I think what you require in the workplace and to come up with different perspectives and ideas is diversity. So diversity on gender, diversity of economic backgrounds, diversity of exposure, diversity of people vs. Right. You need that. So I think No. One, women just animosity because unfortunately most workplaces by default are much more male skewed.
That's number one. I think number two, definitely and distinct. We need to leave that work. Right. I'm not saying it's better or it's worse. It's different. And I think that's what matters, because I think that the nurturing the way they do actually is different. Right. So one of my most favorite things to do is to help young people figure out how to grow their career about their interest and their skill sets. I love doing that.
I love spending time with young people doing what's next for you at our company or somewhere else as well. So I think they do add a different type of nurturing. They do add different modules. Courts, bank model campuses are different between men and women. I am much more sensitive towards certain type of jokes or certain types of remarks or certain types of content. So the filter is then much on the right and hence you never get a chance usually for somebody else to tell us that he had this was questionable and there was something off with this because we had enough diversity of opinion that people will raise their hand and they're not afraid to speak.
So it has to be culture. A lot of people that employ women in certain types of roles and those women can't teach. Right. So it has to go on and on the culture. Hamady I need Dinni. Diverse viewpoints and everything goes through a stress test internally before it goes out. So obviously the problems are problematic and it's different. I think women in leadership positions add a lot and they do three things, a different management style simplicity, the.
It shows young women in your company that there is group, that there is hope that there's a future and it makes them more confident so they become better at their jobs. They become better at speaking up. They become better at pointing out a mistake if they're seeing it happening on pointing out something bad and they're seeing this happening. So if you have more women on the hour, more than the other, about 50 percent women in leadership positions, then about 40 percent women overall in the company and leadership position, women have a lot to do with how confident the younger girls are.
So I think this is what what women add up. I wouldn't stereotype as just the idea that women are very empathetic men. I mean, I think that's very individualistic. So you do need all sorts of people in terms of diversity. Of course, the basic cultural and ethical value system should be some. Of the things you stole from pocket aces. Thank you, ma'am. This is one of those conversations I wanted to have for, you know, you one of my early guests I wanted on the show.
I don't know why it's been delayed so long and was at the end of the lockdown, but I really, really appreciate it. I appreciate you sharing your knowledge.
You're learning so openly. That's the sign of a true entrepreneur. You're all about sharing. You're all about elevating yourself and like the people around you. So just really thank you. I really appreciate this.
Thank you so much. I've been waiting to do this for a while. I'm so glad it's finally happened and full respect to everything you do because I can even go like motivational quotes on Instagram is something that I keep like reposting and stuff, because I truly think that you are changing. You're changing my mind sets of young men in this country and including those mindsets, which I think is a national service. So you're very I know I'm not. I do think that young men and their mindsets would use a lot more direction.
And you are you're one of the people providing that skill so much more than just being in the content and entertainment business. I think you're doing a service to the to the world and the nation and to. Yeah. And to men themselves.
So thank. Thank you, ma'am. That's the that's the goal. I just I feel like I didn't have a lot of guidance or I didn't have too many mentors early on in life. So I keep trying to, you know, put that out for the world through people like yourself for sure. Like I feel again, like coming back democratises because of the rapidity of your journey. There's been too many learning. So and I'm sure if I have the same conversation with Ashwin and Anita, they're going to say completely different things, which is also on the cards.
No, no, thank you. And I'm waiting for this to get done so I can actually see it. And I'll probably be in the same room with you and jam at some point and it'll be really it'll be fun to be the one.
For sure, but for now. Ma'am, thank you. I genuinely, really appreciate this. I look at I've always spoken really highly of Bobby wherever I've gone for a reason, because I've seen, you know, just how everyone is. So you guys are doing some crazy work and you're like kind of like Meadow's for the rest of us. So thank you.
Thank you so much. And you really had fun doing doing this.