How I got started with building, tech and startups?

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After receiving soo many DMs like these ones I have finally decided to write about how I got started with startups and stuff.
I have been building tech projects and startups since I was 12-13 years old. I developed a deep love for superheroes, Computer games and science from a very young age. Which eventually forced me to learn basic programming when I was around 9 years old. I just learnt to program cause I wanted to make games and superhero gadgets.
Yes as silly as it might sound I am not into startups to make money or fame, I am here cause I have fun building stuff, I love tech and superheroes, especially Iron man, batman and Ben-10. That's the true reason that got me into tech. I only have one dream, to become a superhero ( see my bio πŸ‘€ )
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I was also fortunate enough to get early access to the internet and then I started watching stuff like hacksmith, colin furze etc. and started building stuff. I am a builder at my heart. Well, that was it. I got introduced to this awesome world of tech and building and then there was no looking back.
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As Naval rightly put it, " The tools for learning are abundant. It’s the desire to learn that’s scarce.”
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I grew up and my heroes changed, now it were people Elon Musk, people who are truly working on expanding what mankind is capable of and doing super cool shit. And that's how I ventured into this world of tech startups. I started building mini startups but failed almost all of them check https://virajchhajed.com/wins-fails for more info on this
https://virajchhajed.com/wins-fails
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Now, whenever I encountered a problem while building these startups I would just search it on the internet and then try to solve it. I became a true autodidact. I also started reading massive amounts of books at this time. the only thing I would do after coming home after school was read books, ( audio, video, e, physical, almost any form ). I developed a sort of information addiction. I continued this for more than 2 years.

The breakthrough

My major breakthrough came after my class 10th exams, Covid has just started and I had a lot of free time with me. I started learning to code again and then competing in a lot of hackathons. I started winning almost all the hackathons I participated in and at one hackathon I caught the eye of people from cemtrexlabs.com. They offered me an internship there and then I readily took it. It was a remote internship and quite boring. But I learned a lot about AR and VR.
But now it was the time to let go of that information addiction that I had developed. Deep down I knew that even though if I read ten thousand business books, it is not gonna help. There is no use in reading books about company culture and hiring when you don't even have a paying customer. So now I decided to get my hands dirty and practically run a full-scale startup. Not just failed mini-projects.

The birth and failure of VizardLab

naturally, as I knew the most about AR and VR, I started vizardLab as a B2B AR company for the media niche but I had to change the business model because I felt really down after a bunch of local media companies humiliated me and took me for a foolish 15-year-old kid. later I pivoted to the real estate niche and realised that real estate really had a need for this product and maybe I could make a cool product here.
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https://vizardlab.com
But even After pivoting to the real estate niche, I tried perfecting the technology for months and later realised that I suck at sales and the market has no need for my product. it was a horrible experience, but it taught me a lot. (Believe me, I was sleepless for nights. I had never experienced burnout before this )
I realized that building is hard but selling is harder!
I learned a lot through this experience though! I had an 8 people team at its peak! I finally decided to close this in February 2021 because I was no more passionate and enthusiastic enough after 8 months of continuous failures. but I met some really cool people along the way and it won't be wrong to say that this was a stepping stone for my success!

Introduction to growth and sales

As I realized that I sucked at sales. I hired Reshav Pandey ( met him on LinkedIn) as the guy to handle sales at vizardlab.com and later while working on Vizardlab I also met Ujjwal Sukheja ( a brilliant growth hacker ). These two guys introduced me to the world of sales and growth and then I stopped programming after that. I pivoted more towards learning about the business and the growth side of things. Partially because now I understand that in general most startups are 30% about building and 70% about selling and partially because I just find growth and sales more challenging. Most people still won’t realize this and accept the fact that selling is way more difficult than building. (Unless you are building something very deep tech.)
Reshav Introduced me to Twitter and I fell in love with the community there. I loved the whole trend of #Buildinpublic #SaaS and #Indiehacking and I told reshav that I am gonna make a SaaS and I am gonna build it in public and left VizardLab.

Beginnings of Basch

I met Digvijay Rathore and our first call went on for 6 hours. After just an hour of chatting, we knew that we both wanted to build something cool together. The agenda of the call was not to cut it until we have a good startup Idea and it went on for 6 hours. We wanted to build something cool and came across this interesting domain of synthetic media and they decided to create something valuable in this emerging domain. We quickly did a smokescreen MVP launch within 6 days of coming up with the idea.
We figured the tech. Made the logo. Made the website. Made the video. and Launch!! ( All within 6 days of coming up with the Idea)
We were blown by the response! Everyone was tweeting about us! Even the Co-founder of Rephrase, Shivam Mangla (Forbes 30 under 30) praised us and tweeted about us!
Damn!!! the launch was amazing!
3k+ Views 150+ signups 10+ mails 100+ Notifications
And then after that. Well, It's a story for some other day.

Key takeaways

I worked day and night on Vizardlab for more than 8 months. It was exciting but hard too. I never expressed it, but It was really hard. And deciding to leave was like killing your own creation that you have nurtured with your own sweat and blood. And you are never ready for that. But shutting it down and moving on ahead was one of the best decisions I made so far. Nothing went to waste. I hired Reshav from Vizlab who later Introduced me to Digvijay. And now we guys are building the coolest stuff I could imagine. Ujjwal, Digvijay and Reshav, these guys were like turning points in my life. Especially Uijwal is probably the dopest guy I know.
Trust the process. It took me more than 4 years to reach here. If you are working hard and constantly failing, It's delayed gratification at work. Keep hustling, better yourself every day and one day it will all compound and you will experience things that you never imagined.
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Till then, keep building and keep hustling πŸš€
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