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Question answered in Quora - Would starting a business during my college years increase my chance of

Good question. To figure out I will always work backwards from the goal.

Your goal is to get a People Management position, so you want to be a leader, lead a team and make a difference.

Here is how I would go about doing it

i) - Learn what it takes to be a people leader - Read some books and understand the skill set, better get some real life examples and observe them.

ii) - Then prove that you are a successful people leader, by accomplishing something, you don't necessarily have to start your own business, for example you can engage in a fund raising activity, where you lead a group of fund raisers and hit certain impressive targets. Or anything similar you can do, but the key is you need to play a leader role where you inspire a bunch of people and accomplish something impressive

iii) - If you want to do that by starting a business that is fine as well. But you need to have a leader role in the business where you are leading a group of people. But if you are starting a business, it could take a while for you to get there , to successfully get your business going you need to do several other things and until you get a decent cashflow you are going to be all alone in the business, unless you have a way to get funding quickly, then you can hire more people and start leading. So starting your own business to learn leadership is a longer way to get that learning

iv) - If your real goal is learn Management and/or Leadership then I would look for opportunities where you can learn just that. Look for an opportunity where you can lead a group of people and accomplish something impressive. There are plenty of volunteering organizations that are out there that are doing fund raising, you could join one

Here is some info on what this Leadership role entails

Manager is a guy who manages things, meaning it could be managing a bunch of machines on a shop floor, managing a timeline, which is managing resources, but keep in mind here the resources are not people, where as the leader manages people, because people are different from machines, machines always have a constant output, meaning a machine can produce certain number of parts given all the inputs that are required for it to run, for example if a machine produces 100 parts per hour, if I run it for 8 hours, I get 800 parts, and if I had 10 machines I get 8000 parts if I run all of them for 8 hours, so I know exactly how many parts it can produce, so a manager can come in and manage these machines and produce the best output based on these numbers, and by changing the schedule the manager can maximize the outputs.

Where as people are different, people have this thing called emotion that makes them work differently in different circumstances, when they emotionally connect with each other, when they display energy, when there is a sparkle in everyone’s eyes, when they understand each other, develop empathy for each other, they help each other, they watch each other’s back, they work so well together as a team, but when they don't like each other or when they don't like the leader, they don’t work so well together, even if one person does not fit in the team, that creates bad consequences, so that is why they say one bad apple can spoil the entire bunch, that is why it is very important to have a great leader that can inspire the team, when there is a great leader that truly inspires the team, sky is the limit for what the team can accomplish. These people are even ready to go on a war on behalf of their leader. So the skills set is different for a Leader, Charisma, Demeanor, Great Public Speaking Skills, Honesty, Integrity, Building Trust with your team, Building a solid relationship with your team, finding a common ground where you can build a solid relationship with them all these come into play. When all these people work together and accomplish something big, there is a special bond that gets created among them, they remember that for ever, they cherish that so much and if there is a leader that can successfully create that again and again that is a magical leader. That is what every people leading person wants to be and make that magic happen with his or her team. And when that happens the whole is much much greater than the sum of the parts, meaning the entire result produced by the team is much greater than the sum of the results produced by the individuals in the team.

That is what is special about Obama, because this guy came from nowhere accomplished so much, spent time in Southside of Chicago, went to Harvard, became a Senator, became the POTUS, articulates everything so well, very good at public speaking, holds his head on the shoulders, very good at decision making, has a good sense of humor, everybody wants to be like him and everyone loves him so much, so Obama doesn't even have to ask these people do things for him, they are so much in love and awe with this guy, people will do anything for him, all he has to do is say what he wants, he has the magical power over the people he is leading. But if people don't like the leader, however hard the leader pushes they are not going to do it with one hundred precent engagement. Usually that happens when the leader is not honest or does not possess integrity or does not do what he says.

Good luck in your Leadership adventure.

Also check out my book Puga Sankara's Supply Chain Blog - that is a must read before spending Hundreds & Thousands of $$$ on your MBA or Masters Degree to get the best ROI or before starting your Entrepreneurial journey.


Puga Sankara is the co-founder of Smart Gladiator LLC. Smart Gladiator designs, builds, and delivers market-leading mobile technology consisting of Smart Gladiator Wearable Scanguns, Tablets, Mobile Tech & Apps for retailers, distributors, and 3PL service providers. So far, Smart Gladiator Wearables have been used to ship, receive, and scan more than 100 million boxes. Users love them for the lightweight, easy-to-use soft overlay keyboard, texting&video chatting ability, data collection ability etc. Puga is a supply chain technology professional with more than 17 years of experience in deploying capabilities in the logistics and supply chain domain. His prior roles involved managing complicated mission-critical programs driving revenue numbers, rolling out a multitude of capabilities involving more than a dozen systems, and managing a team of 30 to 50 personnel across multiple disciplines and departments in large corporations such as Hewlett Packard. He has deployed WMS for more than 30 distribution centers in his role as a senior manager with Manhattan Associates. He has also performed process analysis walk-throughs for more than 50 distribution centers for WMS process design and performance analysis review, optimizing processes for better productivity and visibility through the supply chain. Size of these DCs varied from 150,000 to 1.2 million SQFT. Puga Sankara has an MBA from Georgia Tech. He can be reached at or visit the company at Also follow him at

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