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The Top Five Startup Incubators & Accelerators of Pakistan Transforming Startups

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Pakistan has been ranked as fast Growing Country for  Startups and Entrepreneurs  . With number of  Globally inspired entrepreneurs multiplying with their  lasting  and innovative  Ideas  , the need of  Nurturing , training and seed funding  providers  namely  Incubators  and  Accelerators  is strongly felt  .
Keeping in view  the growing and upward trend  in Startup Business  Government of Punjab Started a state of Art Incubation center in form of Plan 9 powered  by Punjab Information Tech Board .Besides this , many  Business Management Institutes are establishing their own incubation centers to empower  the  Business Graduates  and turning them into Entrepreneurs to run their own ideas .
With growing access to broadband  ,3G/4G Subscribers and flooding Mobile Phone Users , it is estimated that the need for Startup Incubators will grow  further provided that  Entrepreneurs  choices  for applying to Incubation services increases . The  Following  top five  Startup incubators  are work mentioning which are really transforming the Startups of Pakistan into established Organization with cutting edge tech Support , Global mentoring and providing congenial environment for  business growth .

1. Plan 9 :  Plan  9  from Punjab Information technology Board is the biggest Government owned  Incubators  which is doing wonders  ever since its official launch  . They are providing mentoring , Office space , Consultancy to improve Ideas , Help in regulation matters  and  seed funding for the startup . Plan9 has the privilege of being the biggest Startup incubator in Public Sector . Some of the Start Startups incubatees are : Magision , Mavenzo , Capital Stake  , Club Internet ,Appography and Tourplanner.pk. Plan 9 specializes in Tech Startups .

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2. The Foundation Incubator  (LCE ,LUMS) :  The Foundation Incubator is yet an other Business Management Institute Initiative  .  It is being run by LUMS Center for Entrepreneurship  has been contributing a lot in  fostering Young Business Graduates with Entrepreneurship Insight and initiatives . The Current Incubated Startups include  Interrata , Cognitica ,interacta , biz clout , savaree and Playbolt . The Foundation incubator  from LUMS Centre for Entrepreneurship is contributing  a lot in shaping the future of Startups and Entrepreneurs .

3.Plan X : The Plan X is yet an other initiative from Punjab Information Technology Board to help incubate mid Stage Startups  and empower and quip them to the Success path . Plan X  is also contributing in bringing  in innovative Startups Ideas ,providing great work environment , Providing Tech Support ,Mentoring and Networking with the Angel Investors . Some of the Notable Startups  in  portfolio Plan X include : Xgear , Bookme.Pk , Baby Planet and Travly .The Credit goes to Punjab IT board for helping young Entrepreneurs with Tools and Support to do wonders in the field of Entrepreneurship .

4.Invest2Innovate  (i2i) : Invest 2Innovate is yet an other Startup Incubator and accelerator with great Support and Mentoring help .  i2i supports the Early stage Startups , trains them connects them with Agnegl Investors and provides them with required Tools and Knowledge to steer the Startup in a professional manner . They take young entrepreneurs for 4 Month training and groom them as CEO’s to run their Startups successfully . Some of the i2i  Portfolio Startups include centericity, 3Restart ,Bliss ,Dheere Bolo ,Blue Sain and Meri Taaleem.

5.CED IBA :  Centre for Entrepreneurial Development from institute of Business Administration Karachi in collaboration with Aman Foundation is yet an other Incubation center for Young  Business graduates with Entrepreneurial instinct . CED nurtures , trains the Entrepreneurs with tools and techniques to pitch their Startups with rocking appearance . The are redefining the frontier and the goals with professional trainers , Ideal business related People and world Class environment with every Tech Support . IBA’s CED also offers the Courses and Degrees in Entrepreneurship for both male and Female . Some of the leading incubatees include : Stallion Deliveries ,LOL ,Fakat , Scoops and Loops  and Ahdaas .

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These are the top five Startup Business Incubators and Accelerators which are really helping the budding Entrepreneurs from Pakistan to become familiar with Startup Structure and luanch their startups as Professional incubatees to make their mark and be counted in world’s biggest Startup Magazines such as Forbes.com  , Entrepreneur.com  and Inc.com.
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Personal Development for Entrepreneurs: How Self Improvement Can Grow Your Business

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Growing a business is a top priority for entrepreneurs. However, focusing solely on your company is not the most effective way to achieve business growth. I have discovered over the past decade that working on yourself and your personal development makes a difference in every aspect of your life. Without you, your business cannot function, and if you are not striving to meet your best potential self, your business has no chance of reaching its full potential.

Working on personal development to consistently improve who you are will make you more self-aware and teach you to do what works best for you. In turn, you will put yourself in situations where you are the most efficient and effective, which will give you more time and energy to focus on your brand.

This discovery has taught me to set goals that focus on personal development, not on numerical-based achievements that are not 100% in my control. Personal development for entrepreneurs is a process that takes time and effort, not only on the good days, but on the bad days, too. Therefore, I want to share five key things you must do in order to practice and up your personal development game.

5 steps to personal development for entrepreneurs

1. Have the right mindset

First, you must have the right mindset when approaching tasks or opportunities. You need to want to take risks and step outside of your comfort zone, even if there is a possibility of failure. Being in uncomfortable situations will help you learn things about yourself that you wouldn’t have known if you were in a comfortable environment.

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Here are a few ways to improve your mindset:

  • Meditate
  • Exercise
  • Eat a good breakfast to start your day
  • Be grateful for what you have; consider using a gratitude journal
  • Be aware of what information you allow in; i.e., be around positive people and positive information because if you surround yourself with positive energy, you will embody the positivity around you

Having the right mindset is the most important thing you can do to improve your personal development. If you open yourself up to be in a situation of growth, the growth will happen.

2. Expand your knowledge

Next, you need to expand your knowledge base and be perpetually curious. My best advice is to read books, ones about your industry and ones that are not. Learn from the experiences of leaders and trailblazers before you. Become inspired to be like the people you read about.

The more knowledge you have, the more power you have to elevate, grow, and generate ideas. If you are not curious, you become stagnant.

3. Locate blind spots and bottlenecks

Locating blind spots and bottlenecks is an important and difficult step in the personal development process. I like to say that there are things you know that you know, things you know that you don’t know, and things you don’t even know that you don’t know.

For example, maybe you’re more extroverted as a leader than you are in daily life. Maybe you have a knack for crisis management but didn’t find out until you were in a crisis situation. When practicing personal development, you start to become aware of aspects about yourself that you would have never expected to be true. Through this self-awareness, you can make adjustments and begin taking advantage of these skills and characteristics. You can use them to become a better leader, and ultimately, a better person.

ALSO READ:  Reforming college education in Pakistan

4. Overcome your fears

The hardest and most introspective part of personal development is overcoming your fears. We can’t move forward unless we acknowledge our fears. Being aware of what those fears are (whether it’s a fear of failure or not being respected as a leader), can help us move forward. Self-awareness is necessary in order for you to grow as a person—and to grow your business.

You can read about and learn from the struggles of successful people who have overcome their fears and try to follow their example.

5. Understand your “why”

Personal development for entrepreneurs is all about understanding who you truly are and being 100% self-aware in order to grow, not only as a person, but as a leader, too. What is that “why” that keeps you moving forward? What gives you the purpose and motivation to keep trying new things and reaching for success? Your “why” is the driving force behind the decisions that you make.

As business leaders, sometimes we get wrapped up in the day-to-day operations and forget to acknowledge why we started a company in the first place. Your “why” can be anything from wanting to take care of your parents, desiring a legacy to pass on to generations after you, or giving your kids the life experiences that you maybe didn’t have.

Personal development leads to business growth

Practicing these five steps—finding your “why”, overcoming your fears, locating your blind spots, being curious, and having a positive mindset—is essential to personal development for entrepreneurs. Working on yourself is the most effective way to achieve business growth.

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Via AB

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Entrepreneurs

Tips for Aspiring Entrepreneurs Looking for Change After the Great Resignation

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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, last year an average of nearly 4 million workers quit their jobs each month. A multitude of reasons has contributed to what is being called the “Great Resignation” during the ongoing pandemic:

  • Employee burnout from working overtime
  • Fear of contracting Covid-19 and spreading it to family members
  • Lack of childcare resources amid school closures and online learning models
  • The realization that there’s more to life than the 9-to-5 grind

Indeed, the times we live and work in are challenging and riddled with uncertainty. However, they also present an opportunity to take control. If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, you may find that now is an ideal time to explore paving your own career path—on your own terms. 

Been there!

When I graduated from law school, the “expected” next step was getting a law firm job. While many of my fellow graduates took that route, it just didn’t feel quite right to me. I couldn’t picture myself working for someone else and wanted something different, something more.

My husband, who is also my business partner, faced a similar situation. Out of law school, he tried to get a job but no firms wanted to hire him. It was deflating at the time, but later became a blessing. Through those experiences of rejection, he discovered his true calling. 

We put our brains together and launched our own company, which we later sold to Intuit in 2008 for $20 million. With a taste of entrepreneurial success and a love for business ownership, we launched CorpNet a year later. 

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While our circumstances may differ from what people are encountering with the pandemic and the Great Resignation, a parallel exists. Namely, people realize they do not have to be tied down to jobs that detract from their quality of life. They are learning they have the power within themselves to chart a different course and find fulfillment.  

Tips for aspiring entrepreneurs looking for something more

1.  Don’t sell yourself short

Just because you have never started a business before does not mean you don’t have the knowledge or qualities required. Tap into what you’ve done and learned in past job positions (sales acumen, customer service skills, technology proficiencies, project management mastery, etc.). Then assess gaps in your abilities and seek training, or find professional resources to fill the voids.

2. Don’t let naysayers get the best of you

You’ll find no shortage of critics to tell you why you won’t succeed. Take their commentary with a grain of salt.

Yes, you should listen to constructive input and feedback from unbiased confidants as you hone your business idea. No, you should not take to heart ill-intended sentiments from people who have no understanding of business ownership and what it takes to launch and grow a company successfully.

Sadly, some people may resent your aspirations because of their own insecurities. 

3. Have a plan

The process of starting a business involves many moving parts. While you don’t have to zero in on every fine detail from the get-go, it’s critical to identify the key areas you’ll need to address. 

One helpful resource for small business startups is SCORE, the national nonprofit organization which provides free mentoring to entrepreneurs at all stages of their entrepreneurial journey. Also, attorneys, accountants, and tax advisors can help you understand your current situation and provide guidance on the legal and financial aspects of launching a business. They can offer expert advice as you make many important decisions, such as:

  • Which business structure (e.g., sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability, or corporation) should you choose?
  • Should you trademark your business name?
  • Does S Corporation election makes sense for your business?
  • Should you hire employees or outsource tasks to independent contractors?
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They also can help ensure you know what you need to do on an ongoing basis to keep your business compliant with all licensing, tax filings, and reporting required by the state, local, and federal government agencies. 

From resignation to entrepreneurship: Sometimes quitters do win

We’ve all heard the saying “Quitters never win.” However, quitting doesn’t always have negative outcomes. In fact, it can open the door to new, exciting opportunities—especially when it involves leaving a position in a toxic or unfulfilling workplace environment to start a successful business. Hopefully, these tips for aspiring entrepreneurs can help make this happen.

Don’t wait to build the life you want

Life is precious, short, and comes with the unexpected—good and not so good. Recently I slipped, fell, and hit the back of my head very hard on a concrete floor. I suffered a concussion and now have headaches that are making it difficult to focus.

This unanticipated experience has reminded me how quickly our lives can change. We should not take anything for granted nor settle for less than we want. 

  • Follow your passion and pursue your dreams.
  • Do work that makes you happy and gives you fulfillment.
  • Do not let fear of rejection or failure stop you; if you never try, you’ll never know your true potential.

Via AB

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Entrepreneurs

Are Highly Successful Entrepreneurs Born or Made?

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Are successful entrepreneurs born or made? The “born vs made” debate is one that has been raging for ages, and there are a few schools of thought when it comes to this question.

The first is that some people are simply born with the skills and personality traits needed to be successful entrepreneurs. They have natural charisma, risk-taking ability, creativity, and more.

These “natural” entrepreneurs are able to dedicate the time and effort needed to be successful because they are driven by internal factors. They are passionate about their work and are motivated to achieve their goals.

The second school of thought is that anyone can become a successful entrepreneur if they put in the hard work and effort. This includes developing the necessary skills and traits but also learning from failures and making adjustments along the way.

This group believes that entrepreneurship is a journey of trial and error. By learning from their mistakes, they can grow into successful entrepreneurs over time.

So, what’s the truth? Is it all in your genes or are other factors at play here, too?

What Makes Entrepreneurs Successful?

The majority of us don’t deliver sonnets like Shakespeare or compose masterpieces like Bach out of the womb. It takes time, and it requires lots of work.

But some entrepreneurs are born with innate skills and engaging personalities. These people are like unicorns. They make the world a better and brighter place, but they also cause the rest of us to feel ridiculously insecure.

We look at the greats like Micheal Jordan, Indra Nooyi, and Warren Buffet and feel like it’s useless to even try to fill their shoes, never mind forge our own path. But what if I told you that success didn’t just fall into their laps?

They might have been given an edge, but that doesn’t mean that they didn’t have to be sharpened.

These greats simply understood that success took a formula—or, more specifically, a three-step process.

The 3-Step Process

Here are three steps that all successful entrepreneurs follow every day that make all the difference, regardless of whether they’re born with talent or just trying to make their business work with duct tape.

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Step #1: Start Small and Think Big

Successful entrepreneurs don’t try to take on the world from day one. They start with a small project or idea and build on that.

This is why, if you look closely at their schedule, you’ll notice that they work in segments. They don’t overwhelm their calendar or say yes to everything. Entrepreneurs that make it understand the power of the word “no.”

If you want to be successful, you need to embrace the small.

Even now, look through your task list and trim it down to size. Figure out what needs to happen now, what can wait, and who you can delegate to so you can reach your top goals.

If you want to write a book, then make writing the priority in your planner. If you want to run the New York City Marathon, then put down the remote, and build your stamina over time.

Starting small enables you to attain the big picture.

So, next time you get overwhelmed by your list, don’t post more motivational pictures in your office. Take a step back, cross off the distractions, and organize your week to get the most productivity and personal balance.

Step #2: Take Risks

One of the biggest things that set moguls apart is that they’re willing to jump without reading the fine print.

Now, they don’t make ignorant decisions. These leaders still research and take the time to consider the consequences. But when push comes to shove, they make the leap.

So, if you’re reading this and you don’t think this type of risk looks attractive, then you might want to reconsider being an entrepreneur. This type of lifestyle isn’t easy. But if you love the feeling of taking risks and experiencing a top-level adventure, then welcome to the club.

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You will make mistakes. Believe me. There’s no way to avoid failure when you become an entrepreneur. But remember, creativity and innovation can only be reached when you fail forward.

So, take a gamble and bet on your success. After all, if you want to get to your goals you need to bet on your company and yourself.

Step #3: Put Yourself First

This leads us to the next point: believing in yourself. No, this is not a motivational-type belief.

If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to be your biggest fan, especially when you face the haters who try to distract you from your goals. No one can believe in you more than you can believe in yourself.

So, before you launch that new product and market your business, remind yourself who you are and why you are the best person to lead this organization.

Successful entrepreneurs start with themselves. They carve out time during their day to walk, eat healthily, meet with a life coach, and build themselves up.

If you take the time to focus on your mental health, spiritual health, and physical health, you’ll keep your footing as your move forward. You’ll drive your business to the next level without losing yourself in the process.

Case Study of Successful Entrepreneurs

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Is that really all there is to successful entrepreneurship?

What about Gates, Jobs, and Winfrey?

Obviously, they were the exception to the rule, right?

Well, let’s take a look and see how they gained such incredible success.

1. Steve Jobs

When you think of Jobs, you might think of blue jeans, black turtlenecks, and minimalistic design. But if you’re reading this on a Mac or iPhone, you know that his fame extends past his fashion choices.

Before becoming a household name, Jobs dropped out of college, tried to sell his shares of Pixar several times, and ventured to India to become a Zen Buddhist.

His life was diverse, and his business background was eclectic. But that didn’t stop him from venturing into the unknown and starting Apple. If anything, it spurred him on to take the leap and spark a technological revolution.

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He wasn’t afraid of the unfamiliar, and that gave him an edge over his competition.

He didn’t cling onto the sidelines. Jobs jumped and figured everything out on the way down.

2. Sara Blakely

Before she built her multi-million dollar Spanx empire from the ground up, Sara Blakely was a door-to-door fax machine salesman.

She didn’t graduate from a top business school, inherit family money, or even pass her LSAT.[4] If anything, Blakely ventured away from the familiar and carved out her own journey to success.

Right now, Goldman Sachs proposed a buyout of Spanx, and they’re offering over one billion dollars to acquire her successful business.[5]

Blakely didn’t have any formal training in marketing. She simply saw a need, created a solution, and developed the most prosperous shapewear company.

3. Melanie Perkins

Perkins, the Australian founder of Canva, started her business in 2013 and grew it into a multi-billion company. In just a few years, she became one of tech’s youngest female CEOs with an idea that started with a high school yearbook business.[6]

Canva grew from an idea to a powerful organization that employs over seven hundred individuals around the world.[7]

When Perkins first started this company, she never expected to rival Adobe and Microsoft. However, after only a few years, Canva has become a staple in the office of every graphic designer and amateur alike.

Melanie Perkins has not only made design attainable—she’s made it equitable.

So, are entrepreneurs born or made?

The answer is both.

Final Thoughts

It takes a combination of natural talent, dedication to learning and growth, and passion for what you do to be successful. And while there are no guarantees, if you put in the hard work and stay focused on your goals, anything is possible.

Go make your dreams a reality!

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