GIM alumnus, Sumeet Anand, PGDM Class of (1997-99) shares what drives his entrepreneurial zeal
Sumeet joined Goa Institute of Management (GIM) to pursue a PGDM in Marketing and Systems in 1997, after an almost two-year stint with NIIT Ltd, where he was Instructional Designer and Senior Systems Associate.
His experience at GIM opened up several doors in many different areas, where he showcased his ability to work in many roles - a consultant, an entrepreneur, visiting faculty and a volunteer. Referring to himself as “an evangelist and entrepreneur in the space of 'Collective Intelligence', Sumeet has over a decade of technology and consulting experience in e-learning, knowledge management and analytics. “GIM made a huge difference not only to my way of looking at situations but also in the way we were taught and in the people with whom we learnt to be free, 'think free’ and chase our passion,” he elaborates.
So how did this successful journey begin? After graduating from GIM, he joined Satyam Computer Service Ltd. in May 1999 as a Consultant in the areas of Business Process, KM, E-Learning and Portals. One of the highlights of his five-year stint came when the KM Portal and Collaboration Solution that was designed for Indian Oil won the Tenth Annual IBM Lotus Award (formerly known as the Lotus Beacon Awards) in the Knowledge and Content Management Solution category.
Moving on to Cranes Software International Ltd. in 2004 as Head Solution Consulting, Sumeet was a part of the management team for Cranes Enterprise Solutions, the IT solutions division of CSIL. In addition, he was responsible for the operations of the Solution Consulting Group.
In 2007, Sumeet changed track, despite a flourishing corporate career, and founded i-nable Solutions. This Bangalore-based start-up showcased Kreeo, a flexible enterprise platform for social collaboration and digital transformation solutions. “What drove me towards entrepreneurship is the creative challenge to solve problems differently and more meaningfully,” he says.
Despite his several professional achievements, Sumeet is constantly striving to push the envelope. He recounts an incident from 2012, which opened up the next chapter in his entrepreneurial journey: “A casual conversation among start-up friends about how all events were the same and that there was not much to learn and explore, led to the conceptualisation of The Goa Project. The thought was to create a melting pot of diverse talent cutting across disciplines to make new ideas and collaborations happen.” The driving force was just sheer passion, and with Sumeet as co-founder, the project got off to an excellent start. Now in its fourth year, Sumeet says, “format of The Goa Project follows the ‘unconference’ model, where complex problems are solved, relationships are built, and collaborations emerge through crowd- sourced topics and open participation.”
Sumeet has also found time and energy for volunteer work. A year after the successful launch of The Goa Project, he decided to volunteer with the iSPIRIT (the Indian Software Product Industry Roundtable) Foundation, which attempts to address government policy, create market catalysts and grow the maturity of product entrepreneurs. “The role is more about supporting the causes and people one believes in and feels happy to be part of,” he says, adding that he works a few hours per week across multiple initiatives.
Such a hectic life, however, must mean some sacrifices on the personal front. Sumeet feels that a truly successful professional should ideally spend more time with family. “I am not there yet. It’s when you are striving that more personal sacrifices are made and you just can’t make things work without the solid support of your spouse,” he points out.
In spite of his varied activities, Sumeet still finds time to keep his alumni bonds “strong and active.” After all, it was his take-away from GIM and the memories he has of his time there that have played a huge part in getting him where he is today!