Conversation With Mohd Fahad Ifaz Of Edge Consulting Ltd [FS 15 Under 35, 2015]

Conversation With Mohd Fahad Ifaz Of Edge Consulting Ltd [FS 15 Under 35, 2015]

Mohd Fahad Ifaz is the Co-founder of Edge Consulting Ltd, and has 5 years of professional experience in working in the development sector, more precisely developing markets for the poor. He started EDGE in 2013 with 4 people, currently a team of 35.

EDGE implements long term projects, conducts research and works with donors, NGOs, private and public sector to develop business strategies for reaching the bottom of the pyramid more effectively and efficiently.

To be stupid, selfish and have good health are three requirements for happiness, though if stupidity is lacking, all is lost.

Future Startup: Briefly tell us about yourself.
Mohd Fahad Ifaz: My Parents were scared that I might chose to become a professional football player, which I would have but I guess I was not strong enough to follow my heart or was not sure if that’s what I really wanted. But I have no regrets for where I’m today and I still play football!

I started my career in development, but the only reason I chose development over a flashy international bank job was I knew I was signing up for something big, which will define my life’s pathway.

After working for almost 4 years at one of the country`s most impactful development project, I have visited almost every district in Bangladesh, worked with farmers, CEOs of top companies and policy makers.

But I wanted to move on, follow my heart and do more. So along with 2 other partners I co-founded EDGE Consulting ltd. that works with donors, NGOs, private and public sector to develop business strategies for reaching the bottom of the pyramid more effectively.

This was not my first venture, already I had set up an online CV writing and curating platform called amarCV.com with two other partners.

I have worked as a consultant for major private and public organizations and also the World Bank group.

Currently my aspiration is to work and expand the horizons of EDGE in the international arena and thus I have moved in to Myanmar. I graduated from North South University where I studied business and later Economics and oh wait, that’s where I met my wife who is helping and supporting me to do the things I love.

Fahad is in our this year’s 15 Under 35 List. You may see the full list here: Future Startup 15 Under 35 For 2015: Entrepreneurs, Trailblazers, Mold-Breakers Of Bangladesh.

FS: What do you think about life? Do you think that one should try to make it meaningful? How can one do it?
Fahad: I absolutely think one should try to make it meaningful, but in their own way. We have to remember that our lives are connected to others, be it our family, friends, people we might have never met.

Our actions affect other people. So if we make our lives meaningful, it means we are creating some value for others.

But one does not always have to be Fazle Hasan Abed, Professor Yunus or Steve Jobs to make life meaningful. They need to do whatever they love doing and get better at it. Shakib al Hasan plays cricket and tries to do his best, making his life meaningful to the nation.

Shakib khan has a meaningful life. Some might find it funny, but he creates entertainment for the mass people of this country. So one can make their life meaningful, if they keep doing whatever they love and create value for others.

To be stupid, selfish and have good health are three requirements for happiness, though if stupidity is lacking, all is lost.

FS: Do you feel like contributing to something bigger than who you are?
Fahad: I feel like contributing to my maximum potential. We all have our abilities and limitations and I want to create value for others through maximizing my potential.

FS: Five lessons you have learned from the teacher called ‘Life’.
Fahad:

1. Stop being scared and follow your heart. If there’s something you want to do but you aren’t doing it because you’re scared, suck it up and do it.

2. To be stupid, selfish and have good health are three requirements for happiness, though if stupidity is lacking, all is lost.

3. There are many things that we would throw away if we were not afraid that others might pick them up.

4. Dress well no matter what the situation is. Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence in society.

5. We can’t get everything. Focus on doing a few things really well.

FS: What is the future of Bangladesh? How can young people contribute to that future?
Fahad: Development, disorder; high returns, uncertainty; inadequate leadership, opportunity to make a difference; growth, chaotic management —these are some of the words that comes to mind when thinking of Bangladesh, as they do in the context of a startup. In that way, Bangladesh is a startup.

Since our fathers and grandfathers have built the foundation and given us a country, it’s our duty to take it forward. One of the most important way the young generation can contribute to the future of the country is by being HONEST.

Being honest to themselves, to the society and to the country. We have to be honest to ourselves to figure out “what young Bangladesh wants”. Does it want to be selfish? Does it want to innovate? Does it want to follow? Does it want short-term fame and long-term disgrace?

The young generation should clarify what they want and whatever they want becomes the “want’ of the nation because the youth constitutes a great percentage of the population.

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