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Future Startup Weekly #52: Links and Commentary

Entrepreneurship, Technology, and Society | 17 December 2022 | No. 52

Hello everyone, welcome to another edition of FS Weekly. This edition features a fascinating interview and four excellent articles from FS and another five excellent reads from across the internet including a TBS analysis on Biman Bangladesh, an excellent piece on procrastination, and much more. 

First, an announcement, We’re hosting a virtual FS Talk featuring Shah Paran, Founder, and CEO of HandyMama. It would be wonderful if you join us. It is a free event, register to get an invitation. I look forward to seeing you. 

On to the update. 

This last week Future Startup published.

1. Before the startup: How to prepare yourself for a startup journey

There are two aspects that you can spend time learning about building companies: 1) what is common among successful companies and founders 2) and what is the hardest part of running a startup. Most other knowledge is either contextual in nature or you don’t need to learn now.

2. Strategic ambition of Cookups, on-demand economy and society, and what makes life real with Nahita Nishmin, CEO, Cookups (Part II)  

In this second and final installment of our fascinating conversation with Ms. Nahita, we talk about the state of the on-demand food delivery market in Bangladesh, Cookups’s strategic path to scale, how she thinks about culture and organization building, the ultimate vision for Cookups, what happened to the thesis that on-demand food delivery has a sure-fire path to mainstream adaptation, the social and cultural impact of the on-demand economy and technology, her favorite books and reading as a hedge against the culture of speed, young people and decline of work ethic, the meaning of work, humility as a leadership framework and the importance of embracing difficulties, and much more. 

3. December 2022 Edition: 03 Startups we’re watching 

  • Jahaji is a technology service provider for the inland water transport (IWT) sector in Bangladesh.
  • MyFuelPump Limited is an on-demand online fuel delivery platform. Users can order fuel on the My Fuel Pump app and get the fuel delivered to their doorsteps.
  • WeGro is a Dhaka-based agri-tech startup that says it aims to “revolutionize the archaic agriculture industry by integrating the latest technology in all aspects of the agriculture supply chain.”

4. Adolescent girls-focused virtual mentoring platform Baak Network wins Tufts Venture Award 2022, Baak’s Ambition 

Baak Network is run by a global network of Bangladeshi women, who have decade-long field experience in the development sector. It was first prototyped in Beirut and Dhaka, as part of coursework at Harvard University Graduate School of Education. In early 2021 amid the peak pandemic and the long school closures in Bangladesh, Baak ran several rounds of quick prototypes in different schools in Dhaka, before launching their first official cohort in September 2021.

5. How to generate ideas: Much more than you wanted to know

Founders need startup ideas. Once you have started a business with an idea, you are in constant need of ideas for growth, management, competition, and so on. Writers need ideas. Footballers and tennis stars need ideas. Politicians need ideas. I can go on. But I’ll not because it does not make sense when the list can potentially run infinitely :). Simply put, the world runs on ideas. 

Outside FS Ideas. 

1. How to Beat Procrastination

I struggle with procrastination all the time. I think everyone does. Over the years, I have come to accept my apparent inability to stay productive for a long period of time. I think it is only natural to give up struggling after trying for so long. Now I have developed a nuanced understanding of my productivity mechanism. And I have come to realize that there will be some days in a month when I’ll not be able to do anything worthwhile. In the past, I used to fight and get even more tired and restless. Now I try to accept and take a rest or read. But I don’t succeed all the time. Because we live in such as productivity-fetish society today, it is hard to forgive yourself when you are failing to meet the standard of being productive. I have read a ton of blog posts and books on productivity and this article is easily one of the best reads. If you read one thing on procrastination, read this. 

2. Revolving door for CEOs: Is it the way to run Biman?

An excellent analysis from TBS’s Jebun Nesa Alo on Bangladesh national airliner Biman’s perpetual management quigmaire and how it continues to plague the carrier. 

3. To Become Rich and Famous, Take a Vow of Poverty and Anonymity

Justin Murphy is one of my favorite writers on the internet. This article is beautiful. 

4. Joseph Campbell Quotes

Here is a sample: “The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.”

5. The Vanishing

I’m on a Malcolm Gladwell bing period of the week. I’m reading and watching a ton of Malcolm. This article published in New Yorker in 2005 is an excellent read on civilization falls.

Ayrin Saleha Ria works at Future Startup as a full-time Research Associate. She has a background in Applied Sociology. Before joining the FS team, she worked and volunteered with a number of social organizations. As someone who comes from a social science background, she takes a deep interest in research around important social-economic challenges in our society. A voracious reader, Ayrin is passionate about working for the betterment of society, takes a deep interest in human society and behavioral science, and loves books.

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