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Topics - Shabrina Akter

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Q 1: We’re excited and grateful for having a chance to interview you. We have been following your work for a long time and it always inspires us. We are really interested to know about yourself and your passion.

I was born and grew up in Chandpur with my other five siblings. We were joint family and the best part of my childhood was the time I spent with my grandmother. Though I’m a forgetful person, I even forget what happened yesterday, but I can still go back to my childhood days. Those days are special and filled with sweet memories. I remember in those days, I was kind of rebellious, extrovert and outgoing type.

When I was in class five we had a headmaster who was a wonderful teacher and honest person. Sir has this system of spending some extra time after school where he taught brilliant and dull students together so that they could do better. And he never charged for it. Actually teaching was his true passion. I was always good in academic performance, so I was in that group. One day sir told us that taking money in exchange of coaching and private teaching is unethical and illegal and no teacher should do that. Although we were too young to understand the ethical ground but he asked us not to attend coaching which other teachers were giving in exchange of money. He said it is unethical to sell education, and they could not do that. If you don’t understand anything in class you must ask your teachers, even should demand extra time after class. But we were taught that if we don’t go to the coaching those teachers would scold us. Realizing that he said, you could complain to school managing committee, but after thinking about our age he said, you are too young to complain and I’d look after it. But we said we could do it and insisted, finally he agreed to let us do the job. And we went to managing committee and complained about the matter. Along with complain we even said that we would call for protest if our demand was not met. The members of managing committee got so fun out of our approach of complaining that they laughed. Unfortunately! I was the leader of this gang of children protesters and to my utter surprise managing committee said that they would solve the problem and instead of scolding me for being so naive at a very young age they encouraged me and also said that I’ll make a very good leader in future. Well, I did not become a leader but this memory still inspires me a lot.

I studied in Chandpur till my SSC and then I came to Dhaka and finished my HSC and then attended Dhaka University.

From childhood I was the most rebellious and outgoing one among my sisters. My elder sister was (and still is) the best girl I have ever seen and also most deprived one! She was a very talented student and good at almost everything. But she had this habit of taking permission from parent for almost everything. I guess she never did anything without the consent of my parents. I was just opposite. I did everything what I wanted to do. So, difference between us was apparent. Just because she was kind of calm and ideal child she missed a lot in life. She was talented and very good and missed a lot in life and I was rebellious and curious and I got a lot in life.

Let me tell you an interesting story about this. Once there was a picnic tour from my sister’s college to Gazipur or Joydebpur, I forgot the location. It was an academic picnic and everything was organized by college and there were teachers to look after students. So, there was nothing to take permission from family. But my sister was a good girl! So, she asked my father and he did not allow. Consequently, my sister missed the chance.

On the other hand, once I had to go to Tripura for an organizational purpose. It was during my university life and I was staying in university Hall. So, I thought if I ask for permission from my family then I would not get the permission to go rather what if I go first and tell them after coming back from there. So, I went and came back and then told my father. He was like “oh! your sister asked me to go to Gazipur and could not go and you went to Tripura and now telling me”.

I think being a bit more curious and rebellious is much better. Moreover, after 18 everybody understands everything and parents also should understand what their children want. Well, there are many constraints in our society, especially for women. But I believe in life you have to be a bit rebellious, extrovert, curious, and a bit daring to live it fullest. There is a saying that good girl goes to heaven and bad girl goes to everywhere.

I studied sociology at the University of Dhaka. But I had a knack for writing in newspapers. It was around 1997 I started writing first and later on I started to contribute to some Bengali newspapers and subsequently ended up working as a regular reporter. Back then it seemed that writing was my passion. Although I was not sure whether writing would be my profession but I was kind of certain that writing and journalism would be my vocation finally. And gradually I started reporting regularly and became a reporter. I worked as a staff correspondent from 2001 to 2007 in a number of print Media. It’s quite a long time. Back then it was my dream that I would be a renowned journalist and writer. And people around me also appreciated and they praised the standard of my writing, insight, and style of investigation. My colleagues always said that I had this capability to write brilliant investigative report.

Journalism was an idealistic job to me. And behind my underlying motivation to choose journalism as a profession was that belief. I thought it was the right thing to do. But at one point of my career as a journalist it happened to me that the standard of ideology was not set then, or it was not even there before, or it was derailed. I did not know whether there was any ideological ground in the field of journalism but in my heart I always considered Journalism as an idealistic and noble profession. But when in a profession like journalism you live a life that have almost everything i.e. you live a snobbish life, you send your kids to costly schools, you often go to clubs, fashion houses, you also manage to give a decent time to your family and your study, then you have to understand that there is something very much wrong-at least in our present context. Well, I don’t want to talk a lot about my previous profession and I’m not a regretful person too. But it’s true that writing was a true passion to me.

Those were awful days for journalism, channel after channel, newspaper after newspaper was closing down. Besides, I was a very young mom that time, the age of my baby was only three months, so it was very difficult for me to collaborate with my co-workers. I was having serious problem with my team. Then I left my newspaper career and worked as a freelance writer for about 8 months and then I joined at a Television, unfortunately, that channel was closed down suddenly and I was kind of unemployed! That’s when one of my friends asked me to start a business by giving a very simple idea. It was like that business is a very plain thing to do! That’s how my journey to the world of entrepreneurship started.

Entrepreneurship is an act of calculation, it’s a matter of vision, and you have to be very smart- smart in a sense that you have to be cleaver enough to survive. Moreover, you have to be calculative like magpie, and sometimes you have to play some tricks to win the game in a way that people would not understand that you are playing tricks. I have to confess that I had not have these qualities when I started. It’s not that I’ve already acquired them all but I’m trying, as you know I’m from a non-business background, I studied Sociology at University and I practiced journalism as a profession so it was tough for me to learn and apply all those tricks. Well, still I’m trying to make sense of many of these tricks.

Journalism is called one of the most challenging jobs for women, but now I think business is much more difficult for women. I have this habit of giving my 100% to work I do and I think your ideology, how you see things and world around, has a profound impact on what you do. And I don’t believe that there is something called social business or non-profit business, I think business itself is a pro-people activity and it has a lot to do for people.

At the beginning I had this feeling of regret that I came to this entrepreneurship thing by leaving a noble profession but now I don’t feel that way. Rather, I think I’m doing a great job and I’m breaking rules and barriers for women and many young people.

I think being a bit more curious and rebellious is much better. Moreover, after 18 everybody understands everything and parents also should understand what their children want. Well, there are many constraints in our society, especially for women. But I believe in life you have to be a bit rebellious, extrovert, curious, and a bit daring to live it fullest. There is a saying that: good girl goes to heaven and bad girl goes to everywhere.
Q 2: Is there anybody who is/was an entrepreneur in your family?

I don’t know whether entrepreneurship is a matter of heredity but, yes, my father is a quite successful business man. However, my business is no way related to my father’s business.

My family is a business family. My father was a very successful entrepreneur and I always had a dream that I’d ultimately take care of my family business but my father always opposed the idea and told me that it’s not a business for girls. And you know business is always a manly job and especially, in sectors like manufacturing, working is tough for a woman. It’s partly true. It’s partly because most of the sectors is not ready yet for women entrepreneurs in Bangladesh. There are few sectors where women are leading but it’ll take time to get hold in other sectors.

I don’t believe the projection that business is a manly job. It is how our society project. Unfortunately, in Bangladesh structure of business is organized around this very projection. But the scenario is changing fast and many women are entering into the world of entrepreneurship. Woman can do business and I’m the proof of that. In Multiplan Center there are 450 shops and I’m the only woman owner.
Q 3: Briefly tell us about your journey to become an entrepreneur.

The idea of entering into the world of business came to me from one of my friends who gave me this idea of starting a business. It was a very simplistic idea of starting a business. I could not find what he thought when he pitched me about the business, it was like this: he said- I know where to source product, how to sell and few other things; so let’s start a business, we will source product from here, then we will put them in our shop and people come and we will sell and get the money. So, this is how I got the first idea of starting a business. I don’t know, he thought me very smart and cleaver to understand the rest of the game or that if we could use my talent in the business then we could do a robust business. But, he was wrong and I was not that much cleaver to understand the rest!

However, after much thought we jointly started the business in 2008. When we started I had no investment. The deal was: I would be working partner and my friend would be financing partner. But our partnership business did not last long. We were very close friends but for reasons we did not continue our business together. You know in partnership business- perspective, ideas, goals and values should be alike otherwise you’ll have lots of problem. I believe that business is an act of commitment and when I can meet small commitments then I’ll get the chance to meet bigger deal and commitment. There we few issues between us and we decided to split and work separately.

Our joint shop was in level 9 of Multiplan Center at that time. When our joint business ended level 4 was opening up for shops and businesses. Then one of my friends suggested me to apply for a shop. The process of getting a shop was simple: you need to give a fixed deposit for getting a shop and a choice. Fortunately, I was one of the few early bookers and got a shop in a good location. That’s how my own journey started.

At the beginning it was impossibly challenging and tough. I was new and knew nothing. I had to learn everything myself by doing. Things are not easy now, neither that difficulties are fading away but now I know how things work. Among the major challenges, finding clients was the most critical one. Moreover, I was from a non business background and I had no experience of managing business. In addition, I had very limited capital and in Hardware business it’s extremely difficult to have innovative ideas and implement them. In service, and manufacturing industries you get lots of options to innovate and implement new ideas but in Hardware business this opportunity is very slim. The only scope to work is in marketing. Besides, hardware market is a very competitive market and I was new, and even I did not start with a market survey.

Moreover, the glass ceiling issue was (is) always there. People were more curious about my background than me and my business. It was like that I don’t have an identity as a person. They had huge interest in everything I do just because I was a woman. All these things took serious toil on me but I told myself that you have to go through this and you have to be patient and be focused. At times, we need to close our eyes, our ears, and our mouth to make progress in life and in work. I tried to divert my focus from these trifles to my progress.

Business is a very tricky game. I have to deal with tough things like getting deal, connecting with clients and managing funds etc which are extremely difficult. I don’t know whether I should share these things but I think newcomers should know what they are going to face and how they should prepare themselves.

Fund is one of the major problems startup entrepreneurs face often. Unfortunately, in Bangladesh banks don’t welcome new entrepreneurs. Moreover, if you are a woman then things are going to be extra pungent for you. When a woman entrepreneur seeks bank loan, bankers often think that the money is not for the woman herself rather for her father or husband. Well, it happens sometimes, husband takes loan in the name of wife, but there are real entrepreneurs too and they should not be the sufferers of someone else’s sins. It’s responsibility of banks and other financial organizations to identify real entrepreneurs and serve them. It’s never an acceptable behavior to close door on the face because she is a woman. And this is unethical too.

People were more curious about my background than me and my business. It was like I don’t have an identity as a person. They had huge interest in everything I do just because I was a woman. Well, it was not like that all these things never hurt me rather it did. But I told myself that you have to go through this and you have to be patient and be focused. Sometime we need to close our eyes, our ears, and our mouth to make progress in life and work. I tried to divert my focus from these trifles to my progress.
Then comes the challenge of getting contract where corruption slips into the process. In all big purchase there is corruption. And for woman this is a big disadvantage. I have experiences of facing peculiar types of questions just because I’m a woman i.e. you provide technology? Can you provide technical support at 12 am? Can you do that, do this etc? I often reply like this: well, would you please tell me who will do this for you at 12 am?

Beyond this, they, buyers and sellers of big budget, have social mixing after business hours. They sit together and do party, drinks and do many things that are impossible for a woman to do. And I don’t think I could afford this as a woman and as a result I sometimes miss big deals.

Then comes to our business related infrastructures like TAX, VAT, bank loans, LC, interest rate, various types of loan etc. and in case of availing many of these opportunities you have to do the same thing as I said previously. The system is highly corrupted. Say for example, there is a BDT 300 crore fund for women entrepreneurs but Banks, according to authority, seldom find any genuine and eligible woman entrepreneurs to disburse that money. And when I asked them that don’t you think I’m eligible and genuine then what’s the problem to give me the loan and why you give me only BDT 12 lakh instead of a big amount? Well, you would not get an answer.

I took loan three times and I never defaulted and never missed my payment deadline. It’s really a mystery that how they give loan and who are those lucky persons who get loan. You know the incidents like Hallmark issue; it is actually a tip of iceberg and there are many more of these kinds of incidents. Basically, the total system is corrupted. And if you want to work here you’ll have to go through these problems. New entrepreneurs seldom understand many of these things, and cannot foresee and that creates problem for them. But it’s in the market that, business is like this.

Once I had this opportunity to meet Samson H. Chowdhury and I asked him about his chemistry behind his success, how he built a giant business from a medical store. His answer was rather self evident: “one should stick with his plan and idea and there is the question of luck with this and you have to work hard.”

I also believe that successful people often persistent type, hard working and they sacrifice many happiness of their personal life. You know everything has price.

Q 4: Please tell us about ‘Techmania’.

At Techmania we basically provide hardware and hardware related services, i.e. computer, computer assembly, networking and computer related peripheral items and trouble shooting of various items etc. Besides, we have some other dreams and plans and those are still in dreaming stage.

I started Techmania in June, 2008. It started with taking my shop in Multiplan Center. At the beginning, when I was going to take the shop at Multiplan center, I got into trouble with installment deposit. The amount was around BDT 2 lakh, back then which was really a big amount for me. For many people it’s no big deal but for me it was. To arrange that money I applied for bank loan and asked for an amount of BDT 8 lakh. That time my banking activities was with AB bank and many of AB Bank’s employees were known to me and one of them was Faruk Mainuddin, who is now working at The City Bank Ltd. When I approached for loan Faruk Bhai said that- I know you and I would help you to manage finance but you have to think twice whether you have the courage that you could repay the loan. I replied that I could with all my available confidence! Then he helped me to get the loan.

From my dealing with loan I learned one lesson that an old trade license worth more than a new one. And for me this was a problem. My trade license was a very new, and was almost spotless! And immature business man does not get loan. The fact is that if you have a much used trade license it’ll make you more acceptable to bankers because it tells that you are doing business for a long time.
Beside, ours is trading business. It was hard to prepare myself for it. For me it was more like a journey of self discovery- a journey where you know nothing about places and you need to know everything and also manage to keep moving ahead.

For me it was a whole new world. I had no idea about my clients but I had to prepare myself for almost everything. And all of it was random. I was preparing myself randomly without knowing the tricks and was doing random marketing of my products.

Techmania snapshotMoreover, there was my gender identity to stand still on my way to hinder my journey time to time. Say for example, when I went for any promotional activities, firstly they tried not to take me seriously, even not to give me an appointment, then when I got a chance to talk they (clients) started taking their own instead of listening to me. Many times I had to listen to my clients first and then I could talk about mine. And even it happened that at first they refused to talk but later they started to talk too much that it difficult for me. And unfortunately all these were new and pathetic experience for me.

While I started, I started with one staff in my team. And later on it starts to grow and now we are seven. The journey was indeed difficult. My background was neither tech nor business. As a result I had to learn both of these slowly. And it was extremely difficult. I learned them through hard work, reading and understanding.

Ours is trading business. So, it’s very difficult to prepare myself and to do the marketing. For me it was more like a journey of self discovery- a journey where you know nothing about places and you need to know everything and also manage to keep moving ahead.
Q 6: Tell us about few problems you faced and the way you outperformed those problems. Have you ever faced any problem because you are a woman and an entrepreneur? And what do you think, how can we make it a little easier for women entrepreneurs?

As I said previously, state mechanism would not welcome you. It is corrupt and it does not accommodate young startups with smile. It does not welcome young people, it does not welcome women. Corruption is all over there.

It made me feel too sad many times that I only face certain problem because of my age, gender and social status. In fact it made me to cry, especially, if it’s for gender issue. But now I think, in some situations you have to adapt and act according to your societal demand. And I’m trying to do so.

The thing I want to tell women entrepreneurs that please lock your ears and close your eyes. You have to be shameless. When a society does not allow a woman to do what she deserves it is shame on that society. Someone has to come forward and break the silence and obstacles and social dogmas, otherwise things will never change. I want some shameless women who will come forward and break the glass ceiling issues. Well, please don’t take me otherwise, when I’m talking about shameless I mean women with courage in a positive way, when I’m talking about breaking rules I’m talking about doing it for social goods, and I am not talking about anything barbaric. I want to tell that, don’t bother about what other people talk about you, people will talk anyway. Women should have the courage to break rules and go ahead.

I have experience of rough conversation with my fellow business men. I have a business card and my phone number is there which is almost public and I have experiences of having some terrible phone harassing as well. It hurts me but I always said myself that- ‘ignore’, and my focus is nothing but to go ahead.

I want to tell women entrepreneurs that please lock your ears and close your eyes. You have to be shameless. In point of fact, when a society does not allow a woman to do what she deserves its shame of that society. Someone has to come forward and break the silence and obstacles and social dogmas, otherwise these will never change. I want some shameless women who will come forward and break the glass ceiling issues. Well, please don’t take me otherwise, when I’m talking about shameless I’m talking about courage in a positive way, when I’m talking about breaking rules I’m talking about doing it for social goods, and I am not talking about anything barbaric. I want to tell that, don’t bother about what other people talk about you, anyway people will talk. Women should have the courage to break rules and go ahead.
Q 7: What it takes to become a successful woman entrepreneur?

Success is a relative term. For some people success is how much money you have, for others it is entirely different. To me success is not a station rather it is a journey. If you enjoy the journey, if you make progress every day, if you slowly move towards your goal then you are successful. I think we should not make the definition of success conclusive rather enjoy the journey. For me, I have not made tons of money but my journey is still on. I’m moving ahead and making progress every single day, slowly I’m moving ahead towards my goal. And this is how I think about success.

Then success is all about spirit. You have to have the spirit. To be successful you must have clear goal in mind, what do you want to do, and then you have to stick with it till you make it. In business there will be ups and downs, but if you give up in the face of obstacles then you are not going to make it. I think one should study the past success stories of one’s filed and should learn from it.

And another thing is people. One should know how to relate his/her initiative with people. To me people are basically helpful and supportive. Although it’s often said that people are selfish in nature, but I don’t believe it. If one can explore goodness within oneself then it’ll be wonderful.

And above all you have to be extremely hard working and a real fighter. One should be in touch with people who have the connection. Having connections from where you might get some help is important.

To me success is not a station rather it is a journey. If you enjoy the journey, if you make progress every day, if you slowly move towards your goal then you are successful. I think we should not make the definition of success conclusive rather enjoy the journey.
Q 8: You are a maker and entrepreneur. Do you have any special style of working of your own?

I use a primitive age CityCell phone, in this cheap phone I’ve a function called reminder and I use it. I’m a forgetful person and I need to remind myself about things time to time so that I don’t miss a deadline.

I’m an avid user of Google drive. I maintain a file in Google drive. Whenever, I get an idea, no matter wherever it is, I enlist it in my note book and when I get online I update it in my Google Drive file. Every morning I start my day by checking my Google Drive file and work schedule and I also finish the day with it. It helps me to maintain my schedule.

Q 9: How do you feel about starting-up now? If you are given another chance to redo everything from the beginning tell about few things, if any, that you would do differently.

I’m not a regretful person. I do much of thinking before doing anything instead of regretting about it after doing. It is true if I were aware of few things then I could avoid few troubles but that is not important. I think, I did my best based on my energy, and capacity, and I’m happy with that.

Q 10: If a young woman come to you and ask for your advice, what would you tell her?

Be focused. Study market before starting. I started without a market study and I had to pay the price many times. Don’t listen what people say. I would also suggest to start with some working experience in the sector she is going to start. Be realistic. Talk less and work more. Don’t be showy. Don’t be too friendly and be strategic. Moreover, a woman should also remember that society is very much critical about her behavior and this should not be ignored completely.

She should know the obstacles and be ready to face them. If anything wrong happen, one should take help from state mechanism, should knock on all doors without considering lead. Make connection. And be bold.

One thing I want to emphasize specially is that, women are very much aware of their body and often put illogical importance on bodily beauty. I think they should expense less money in cosmetics and beautification and more on development of their soul and brain. Please don’t spend lots in beautification and lipstick. As an entrepreneur one must be conscious about useless cost.

One should separate her working and personal space. Never do the work from your bed room! In fact one can’t. My experience about ‘working from home’ is failure. One should rise early, If not that early then at least at a reasonable time. Don’t stay around your bed. It makes people lethargic. Be always fit in health and cloth. Dress smartly-it sets our psychological tune for work.

Be choosy in case of using social networking sites and virtual life. Make schedule of your leisure time, sleeping time, and hangout time. Sleep late/work late at night and wake up early. Most importantly, work hard and make it happen.

To be successful you must have clear goal in mind, what do you want to do, and then you have to stick with it till you make it. In business there will be ups and downs, but if you give up in the face of obstacles then you are not going to make it. I think one should study the past success stories of one’s filed and should learn from it.


BiBi Russell is the founder of ‘Bibi Productions’-a world renowned fashion house working with crafts people in Bangladesh. Bibi was born in Chittagong, Bangladesh. She grew up in Dhaka studying in Kamrunnessa Govt. Girls’ High School and Home Economics College. Later she went to London and earned a graduate degree in fashion from London College of Fashion. In the next few years, Bibi worked as a fashion model with different prestigious organizations and talented people.

In 1994 BiBi returned to Bangladesh and opened Bibi Productions in the year of 1995, a fashion house, fusing indigenous Bengali cultural elements into her line. With BiBi Productions she first claimed the much cited slogan ‘Fashion for Development’. Then on Bibi has been working with crafts people with a vision to save crafts and revive their dream.

Bibi has received recognition from many prestigious organizations around the world- “Honorary Fellowship” by the London Art University, “Entrepreneur Woman of the Year” by the Foundation of Entrepreneur Women, “UNESCO Special Envoy: Designer for Development”, UNESCO Artist for Peace, UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador, and YODONA Award for Humanity are few of many.

Q. This is really wonderful to have you. Please tell us about yourself and your passion.

I’m Bibi, I work with and for crafts people. My aim is to save and revive crafts and help crafts people to live better life. I believe in positive Bangladesh. Whatever I do I keep that in mind. I believe fashion can be used for social and economic development. Fashion, for me, is a cultural identity, a necessity. In todays world no one can go naked. You need a piece of cloth to cover your pride. This holds a very fundamental truth that fashion is a part and parcel of social and economic development which opens up many doors of opportunities for us.

As I said earlier, I work for and with crafts people and whatever I do I make sure that it’s a sustainable income for the people involved. I want to ensure better livelihood for crafts people and education and health for their children.

I was born in Chittagong, that time it was East Pakistan, and brought up in Dhaka. But my father was from Rangpur and my Mother from Dhaka. So we were brought up in a multi-cultural environment and I had a very wonderful childhood. Today I know many things about our art, culture, music, and everything because of my brilliant childhood and all the credit goes to my parents. They made us believe that there is a positive Bangladesh. They made us feel proud of Bangladesh.

I’m very lucky to see and come close to many great politicians, great artists, and great musicians during my childhood. Our house was open to all. So, we were not like stuck rich children, we had a very beautiful childhood and we did travel a lot.

Now, when I look back I understand, when a person grows her dream grows too. So this dream of mine, to serve, is not an accident rather something deep-seated into my heart. It was there from my childhood, despite the fact that it became clear when I was in abroad.

I want to preserve the heritage of my country, foster creativity, provide employment, empower women and contribute towards the eradication of poverty. That is what I’m committed to do. Save the crafts people and help revive their dreams.
I did my basic education in Bangladesh. I went to a Bangla medium school and then I went to Home Economics Collage to do my BSC. I was lucky enough to have Siddika Kabir, Hosna Banu Apa and many other great teachers. I received my education on fashion in London, from London College of fashion; I’m graduated as a fashion designer.

Today I’m back because I love this country. I believe there is a positive Bangladesh which was implanted within me by my parents. That’s why I think how you grow up; and how you spent your childhood is a very important issue. Nobody asked me to come back; neither did my parents give me an injection of DeshPrem [love for country]. They knew I would come back and do this. My two feet are in the ground. I lead a very normal life.

I want to preserve the heritage of my country, foster creativity, provide employment, empower women and contribute towards the eradication of poverty. That is what I’m committed to do. Save the crafts people and help revive their dreams.

Now, when I look back I understand, when a person grows her dream grows too. So this dream of mine, to serve, is not an accident rather something deep-seated into my heart. It was there from my childhood, despite the fact that it became clear when I was in abroad.
Q. Tell about one of your favorite memories?

Well, I have hundreds of sweet, favorite memories. I can’t tell you one because I don’t want to tag a single memory as favorite. Many memories make you. It’s equally true for me. So, I don’t have one favorite memory but many.

Q. You were a renowned international fashion model and worked with brilliant people & prestigious organizations and life as a top fashion model and life as an Entrepreneur is completely different. So, what’s the reason, what’s your underlying motivation behind becoming an entrepreneur and designer?

I think someone like me would not do something very suddenly. I’m a very focused person. I knew what I wanted to do but it had to be very clear to me whether I could do it or not before embarking on a journey. So I took time. I had a dream but it took me many years, 20 years, to make my dream come true. I wanted to come back but I wanted to have mental and physical strength to be able to put everything behind my dream and drop everything on earth to make it happen.

You can go forward in your life but you have to be focused. Being a girl from Bangladesh and to work in Europe and to make your first name known to the world is not an easy to do. It’s a very tough job but I did it.
Then and again, as I told you earlier I was brought up in a very cultured family. I saw and met great people in my childhood. And I always wanted to make a difference. I think family, how you grow up, is very important. My parents always make a list of stars in the sky for us. There were Tagore, Shakespeare, Nazrul, Jibonanondo Dash, and many more and they never made me feel like you are the star. So, I never felt myself like a star. Since my childhood I had stars to follow. It was built-in inside me. And my major source of motivation or inspiration is within.

Most importantly, I believe that whatever success I had in Europe or in the world it was because of Bangladesh. I owe this to my nation. If I had one bit of success it was because the world was curious about me, it was because I was from Bangladesh, so I wanted to give back. That’s what motivated me to come back and does what I’m doing now.

You can go forward in your life but you have to be focused. Being a girl from Bangladesh and to work in Europe and to make your first name known to the world is not an easy to do. It’s a very tough job but I did it. So, I thought if could do tough there I could do it in my own country.

I believe that whatever success I had in Europe or in the world it was because of Bangladesh. I owe this to my nation. If I had one bit of success it was because the world was curious about me, it was because I was from Bangladesh, so I wanted to give back. That’s what motivated me to come back and does what I’m doing now.
Bibi productions web
Q. Please briefly tell us about ‘Bibi Productions’, what’s the main idea?

I came back to Bangladesh on the first day of 1994. Prior of that I traveled around and used to come to Bangladesh often but not for living. My parents always lived in Bangladesh. So, I used to come for long weekend. It’s exigent to know Bangladesh very well. But when I came back I knew I came back to live in Bangladesh. I came back to make my dream happen. There is a big difference between coming on holidays and living because each area of Bangladesh has its own dialect, culture, food habit and way of life. I had to be used to that.

Bibi ProductsIn July 1995, after much ado, I opened ‘BiBi Productions’. Back then I knew many NGOs and people who were working in same arena but I wanted to do something very different. So, I did the things differently. In Bibi Productions I’m the founder but surrounding me none of is my relative here. I picked up people who I thought believe in what I believe, and believe in positive Bangladesh.

Diversity of people is an important ingredient of Bibi Productions. All members of my team are from lower middle class families-poor the world says. I wanted to give them the confidence that poverty is not an incurable disease. You can come out of poverty if you work harder. You have to plan, you have to be focused, and you have to work hard to make your plan happen.

ProductsI started Bibi Production with the vision to save and revive crafts and to a better living standard for crafts people. There might be one or two mistakes I’ve made, but that does not matter, everybody does.

Bibi Productions is a hundred percent self funded project and financed by me. I never had anyone paying me. I’ve been doing this for 18 years, tough life is gone. I never had a sponsor, I never had anything. But it’s not a complaint. Whatever I have in life I put it in Bibi Productions. When I came back I thought many people and Bank would come forward but no one. They give it to corporate and big NGOs, they don’t believe. I thought it’s may be because they can sell the poverty but I’m showing not the misery of the poverty but the beauty. I’m showing hands of crafts people have magic.

However, at Bibi Productions I’m just the founder; I’ll be leaving Bibi Production for the people of Bangladesh. There is no other way, if I show you my card; you can see I’m just the founder- I’m not the managing director, other people do the work and they own BIbi Productions.

I thought it’s may be because they can sell the poverty but I’m showing not the misery of the poverty but the beauty. I’m showing hands of crafts people have magic.
Q. Please tell us few more bits and pieces of the story.

Well, till now I’m picking up and at the first phase of the ladder. Of course, it is much better now. Back then it was even difficult to make people understand that this was possible, something that can be done. Now fashion for development is picked up by almost all the countries because it’s important for social and economic development. May be I don’t make tons of money, or I’m still at the first step of the ladder, or Bangladesh does not give me any sponsorship or anything, that does not stop me working. I make sure our village people, our crafts people have what they need to make magic happen and to revive crafts.

I disagree with the majority of the people who think everything comes from the privileged class. There are no fools. I’m leaving Bibi Productions, if you have talent, if you know how to do it, there is a chance.

Q. How many people work at ‘Bibi Productions’ now? And how do they work?

In office and around we work around 30 people. They all are permanent. We work like a family.
At Bibi Productions three things are very important for me- one: whatever little money I earn I make sure that crafts people get their share straight away. All the people work in my office are from ordinary family and I make sure that they get paid for their contribution. No one gets paid second day of the month. That is my first priority that employees and crafts people get paid on time.

The whole world wants to know about Bibi Productions, and how Bibi Productions works. I always tell my team that, the most excellent team anybody can ever have, don’t think you have achieved everything, there are much better job to be done. We are always on run to make things better.

Research is an imperative for us. Whatever little money I make in Bibi Productions, I put it in research. If today I die, Bangladesh will go 30 years ahead with what I’m doing with my own money. It’s not like that if I die tomorrow Bibi Productions will be closed down, no; there are people who will take it forward.

Research is an imperative for us. Whatever little money I make in Bibi Productions, I put it in research. If today I die, Bangladesh will go 30 years ahead with what I’m doing with my own money.

Q. You mean someone will take your legacy ahead.

It’s not about legacy; it’s about crafts and crafts people. If there is no one to take it forward then what will happen to crafts, to crafts people?

Q. Please tell us few of the problems you have faced to date and the way you out performed them?

I started Bibi Productions back in 1995. I know the struggle. Only thing which surprises me is, if I knew, it took me many years to make my name, Bibi, familiar to the world. I thought with that I would get lot of support in Bangladesh, especially, from Banks, Cooperates, but I did not.

I do exhibitions in Paris and other countries. Do you think I do that with my own money? No, never. I have sponsors and patrons. But I never did an exhibition in Bangladesh. Because why do I spend my own money to show my work to my own people. I have better things to do with my money. There are sponsors who want to sponsor my work in India, Srilanka, Cambodia and so on. That surprises me how come the rich society, Banks and educated society don’t support me here in my own country. They are giving crorer loan; of course they would not give me because I work with poor people and banks don’t bank on poor.

I’m a person with full of energy, and I never get depressed. My mental satisfaction is there, in top. I never had to take a sleeping tablet to go to sleep. I sleep whenever I need to go to sleep. I wake up to go forward. And I work hard.
Q. 18 years-it’s really a long journey. And in case of Bangladesh it’s of course not a very common phenomenon.

I enjoy my journey. I love working. And I have the freedom.

Q. Tell us about team, team problem, and problem with people.

I used to come to Bangladesh often but I never understood the politics inside until I start living permanently. My problem with Bangladesh, with the society, is my name. People think I’m too famous. But I’m not. Thus, people used to come here to work because of Bibi not because of crafts people. They don’t handle crafts people properly, or their job properly. They think I’m may be the Bill Gates, tons of money. This caused me problem for time being. But when I understood I cut down those people and selected people who believe in this work, who have passion for crafts and crafts people. Who believes as much as it’s my baby, it’s their baby too. Now it’s okay. One of the distinctive characteristics of my team is: most of my team is from village.
You have problems in everywhere but problems help us to grow.

 My problem with Bangladesh, with the society, is my name. People think I’m too famous. But I’m not. Thus, people used to come here to work because of Bibi not because of crafts people. They don’t handle crafts people properly, or their job properly.
Q. Woman entrepreneurship

First of all I believe in women empowerment. My office, here in Dhaka, is all boys and I’m the only woman. I don’t believe woman empowerment means you put a red carpet on my way. I can compete with the man. Rather give me the chance I deserve to compete and give me a level playing field.

Q. Had you faced any problem because you were a woman? How did you outperform those?

Well, at the beginning of my journey I spent 99.9% of my time in village. So, I did not face any problem because of my gender identity. For first one year I tried to be close to them. It took me one year to make crafts people understand that I’m there for them, to give people the confidence. So, it was a lot easier in-terms of gender issue.

Yes, if I were in the Dhaka and going to banks, I never go to bank because I have bad experience, and going around with these people then might be I would have lots of problems.

But I choose who I want to work, who I want to recruit, and lead. It gives me the opportunity to work with best people. You rarely see me in any program because I don’t see our people know how to show respect to people. There is no point respecting me when I’m dead. I don’t think one should respect me because I’m a woman, but because I’m a human being.

Q. We really have very small number of woman entrepreneurs. What do you think about it?

That’s not true. In village level women are working in almost every sector. Whatever the number the situation is no means barren. If you go to ethnic places like, Cox’s bazaar, Rangamati, Monipur, everywhere women are attending economic activities and contributing. Well, the number may be not that much encouraging but I don’t think it’s frustrating too.

Q. Tell us something about your design.

I do many kinds of design but whatever I do, and why the whole world want me is because, I use local ingredients, local materials in my design. I work in nearly all the countries, everywhere I use local materials. It is a very important feature of my design.

I do a lot of research; I spend a big chunk of my money in research. This is the situation where no one comes forward to take part. I can tell you, if I die today, Bangladesh can go forward. This is very important for me.

Q. What it takes to become a successful designer?

No creative person can tell you that I’m very successful. If you think you are successful you will go down. You do day to day. I went to a very good collage and I learned and I worked very hard. I don’t go and download film, yeah I do listen music when I feel like that. But I go through lot of researches. I use local materials to produce world class design, for instance take Khadi- Khadi does not mean you have to make something that look like a politician’s cloth. You can make young things out of Khadi. I make diversified products out of local fabric and materials.

No creative person can tell you that I’m very successful. If you think you are successful you will go down. You do day to day.
Q. You are the first person to ask ‘fashion for development’; when and how the idea first came to your mind? And why that?

I always believe, because I’m a Bangladeshi, we made history for the first time with a piece of cloth-the Muslin. If we could make it in thirteen century then we can do that in twenty first century too. I think today we can do that. I don’t believe in charity, absolutely no charity. I always say that, I can compete with the world. If you know how to write you don’t need best pen you can do with any pen.

Q. Tell something for our young startup entrepreneurs and wanna be designers.

For any one, it’s important to know what you are up to before embarking on a journey. I know Bangladesh very well. Before I went to Europe I knew about our culture, our heritage-credit goes to my parents, and every other thing. And later on I learned a lot from people. It has made my working a lot easier.

If you want to work in Bangladesh, you have to know Bangladesh politically, geographically, and you have to know religious binding and all other things. I can’t do a show in Bangladesh with bikini because I’m a Bengali Girl and I know what my culture is. So, you have to know your country, culture, people; you have to look into the eyes of people and see what’s in inside.

For any one, it’s important to know what you are up to before embarking on a journey.
Do your own creation. Go out of convention. It’s unnecessary to make something because everybody does the same.
Respect human dignity. You have to respect people.

Today young people have so many chances, opportunities. You can know almost anything just by a finger tip. Recently, I was in Africa, there was a young girl asked me about my project in Senegal, she asked how do you do this in Senegal? I was amazed; I asked how do you know? I know everything about you-she replied. A 15 years old girl knows everything about me! This was sheer impossible in our time. Do make good use of your opportunities.

Stay focused. Money is not everything. There are many ways to make money. Choose one that also does some good for society. You also have to learn how to revolve money. I worked and learned how to make a 10 taka to 12. So, you have to know how to make it revolving.

Q. What are you reading now?

I’m a voracious reader, I read a lot. Now I’m reading autobiography of Salman Rushdie. Before that I finished reading a book on Surja Sen and Pritilota.

I always believe, because I’m a Bangladeshi, we made history for the first time with a piece of cloth-the Muslin. If we could make it in thirteen century then we can do that in twenty first century too.


সবচেয়ে জনপ্রিয় ১৪৯ টি অনুবাদ ( সবার কাজে লাগবে।)
১, অভাবে সভাব নষ্ট- Necessity knows no law.
২, অতি চালাকের গলায় দড়ি- Too much cunning overreaches itself.
৩, অতি লোভা তাতি নষ্ট- To kill the goose that lays golden eggs./ All covet, all lost.
৪, অতি ভক্তি চোরের লক্ষন- Too much courtesy, full of craft.
৫, অধিক সন্ন্যাসীতে গাজন নষ্ট- Too many cooks spoil the broth.
৬, অস ময়ের বন্ধুই প্রকৃত বন্ধু- A friend in need is a friend indeed.
৭, অল্প বিদ্যা ভয়ংকরী- A little learning is a dangerous thing.
৮, অপচয়ে অভাব ঘটে-Waste not, want not.
৯, অন্ধকারে ঢিল মারা-Beat about the bush.
১০, অন্ধের কিবা রাত্রি কিবা দিন-Day and night are alike to a blind man.
১১, অপ্রিয় সত্য কথা বলতে নেই- Do not speak an unpleasant truth.
১২, অরণ্যে রোদন/ বৃথা চেষ্টা- Crying in the wilderness.
১৩, অর্থই অন অনর্থের মূল-Money is the root cause of all unhappiness.
১৪, অহংকার পতনের মূল-Pride geoth before destruction.
১৫, অহিংসা পরম ধর্ম-Love is the best virtue.
১৬, অসারের গর্জন তর্জন সার/খালি কলসি বাজে বেশি-An empty vessel sounds much.
১৭, আকাশ কুশুম কল্পনা-Build castles in the air.
১৮, আগাছার বাড় বেশি-All weeds grow apace.
১৯, আগে ঘর, তবে তো পর-Charity begins at home.
২০, আঠারোমাসে বছর-Tardiness.
২১, আপনার গায়ে আপনি কুড়াল মারা-To dig one’s own grave.
২২, আপনার ভাল পাগলেও বোঝে- Even a fool knows his business.
২৩, আপনি বাঁচলে বাপের নাম/ চাচা আপন প্রাণ বাচা-Self preservation is the first law of nature.
২৪, আগুন নিয়ে খেলা-To play with fire.
২৫, আদার ব্যাপারীর জাহাজের খবর-The cobbler must stick to his last.
২৬, আয় বুঝে ব্যয় কর-Cut your coat according to yor cloth.
২৭, আল্লাহ তাদেরই সাহায্য করেন যে নিজেদের সাহায্য করে- Allah helps those who helps help themselves.
২৮, ইচ্ছা থাকলে উপায় হয়-Where there is a will, there is a way
২৯, ইটটি মারলে পাটকেলটি খেতে হয়-Tit for tat.
৩০, ইশ্বর যা করেন সবই মঙ্গলের জন্য-It is all for the best./ What God wills is for good.
৩১, উলু বনে মুক্তা ছড়ানো- To cast pearls before swine.
৩২, উত্তম মাধ্যম দেওয়া(মারপিট করা)- To beat black and blue.
৩৩, উচুগাছেই বেশি ঝড় লাগে-High winds blow on high hills.
৩৪, উঠন্তি মুলো পত্তনেই চেনা যায়-The child is father to the man
৩৫, উদোর পিণ্ডি বুধোর ঘাড়ে- One doth the scath and another hathhh the scorn.
৩৬, উড়ে এসে জুড়ে বসা-To be quick to occupy.
৩৭, এক ক্ষুরে মাথা মোড়ান-To be tarred with the same brush.
৩৮, এক ঢিলে দুই পাখি মারা-To kill two birds with one stone.
৩৯, এই তো কলির সন্ধ্যা- It is just the beginning of the trouble.
৪০, এক হাতে তালি বাজে না-I takes two to make a quarrel.
৪১, এক মিথ্যা ঢাকতে অন্য মিথ্যার অশ্রয় নিতে হয়- One lie leads to another.
৪২, একাই একশ- A host in himself.
৪৩, একূল অকূল দুকূল গেল- To fallen between two stools.
৪৪, এক মাঘে শীত যায় না- One swallow does not make a summer.
৪৫, এক মুখে দূরকম কথা-To blow hot and cold in the same braeth.
৪৬, কই মাছের প্রাণ বড় শক্ত- A cat has nine lives.
৪৭, কষ্ট না করলে কেষ্ট মেলে না-No pains no gains.
৪৮, কয়লা ধুলেও ময়লা যায় না-Black will take no other hue.
৪৯, কাচা বাশে ঘুণে ধরা-To be spoiled in early youth.
৫০, কাটা দিয়ে কাটা তোলা-To swallow the bait.
৫১, কাকে কান নিয়েছে শুনে কাকের পিছনে ছোটা- To swallow the bait.
৫২, কাকের মাংস কাকে খায় না-No raven will not pluck another’s eye.
৫৩, কাটা ঘায়ে নুনের ছিটা-To add insult to injury./ To add fuel to fire.
৫৪, কান টানলে মাথা আসে-Give the one, the other will follow.
৫৫, কানা ছেলের নাম পদ্ম লোচন-Appearances are deceptive.
৫৬, কিল খেয়ে কিল চুরি করা-To pocket an insult.
৫৭, কুকুরের পেটে ঘি সহ্য হয়না- Habit is the second nature.
৫৮, কেচো খুরতে সাপ-From the frying pan to the fire.
৫৯, কোথাকার জল কোথায় গড়ায়- Let us wait to see the conclusion.
৬০, খাল কেটে কুমির আনা- To bring on calamity by one’s own imprudence.
৬১, অসারের গর্জন তর্জন সার/খালি কলস বাজে বেশি -Empty vessels sound much.
৬২, খিদে থাকলে নুন দিয়ে খাওয়া যায়।–Hunger is the best sauce.
৬৩, গাছে তুলে মই কেড়ে নেওয়া-To leave one in the lurch.
৬৪, গামে মানে না আপনি মোড়ল- A fool to others to himself a sage.
৬৫, ঘর পোড়া গরু সিদুরে মেঘ দেখলে ভয় পায়-A burnt child dreads the fire.
৬৬, ঘরের শত্রু বিভীষন- Fifth columnist.
৬৭, ঘোড়া ডিঙিয়ে ঘাস খাওয়া-To make a fruitless effort.
৬৮, ঘোড়া দেখে খোড়া খোড়া হওয়া- To be unwilling to work when there is somebody to help.
৬৯, ঘোমটার ভেতর খেমটার নাচ-Coquetry under the guise of modesty.
৭০, চাদেও কলঙ্ক আছে-There is no unmixed goods.
৭১, চাচা আপন জান বাচা-Ever y man is for himself.
৭২, চেনা বামুনের পৈতা লাগে না-Good value for ready money.
৭৩, চকচক করলেই সোনা হয় না-All the glitters is not gold.
৭৪, চোরে চোরে মাসতুতো ভাই-All thieves are cousins.
৭৫, ছেড়ে দে মা কেদে বাচি-Don’t nag me, and leave me in peace.
৭৬, ছেলের হাতের মোয়া-Child’s play thing.
৭৭, জহুরীরাই জহর চেনে-Diamond cut diamond.
৭৮, জোর যার মুল্লুক তার-Might is right.
৭৯, গরু মেরে জুতা দান-To rob Peter, to pay paul.
৮০, ঝিকে মেরে বৌকে শেখান-To whip the cat of the mistress who doesn’t spin.
৮১. ঝোপ বুঝে কোপ মারা- Make hay while the sun shines.
৮২. টাকায় কি না হয়-Money makes everything.
৮৩. ঠেলার নাম বাবাজি -Nothing likes force.
৮৪. তেল মাথায় তেল দেওয়া- To carry coal to new castle.
৮৫. দশের লাঠি একের বোঝা-Many a little makes a mickle.
৮৬. দুধ কলা দিয়ে কালসাপ পোষা-To cherish a serpent in one's bosom.
৮৭. দুষ্ট গরু অপেক্ষা শূন্য গোয়াল ভাল-Better an empty house than a bad tenant.
৮৮.দেখতে নারী তার চলন বাকা- Faults are thick whele loves is thin.
৮৯. ধান বানতে শীবের গীত-A rigmorale
৯০. ধরমের কল বাতাসে নড়ে-Virtue proclaims itself.
৯১, ধরি মাছ না ছুয়ে পানি- To make sure of something without risking anything.
৯২, নুন আন পানতা ফুরায়-After meal comes mustard.
৯৩, নানা মুনির নানা মত-Many men, many minds.
৯৪, নাকে তেল ঘুমান-To be careless about what happens.
৯৫, নিজের বলই শ্রেষ্ঠ বল-Self-help is the best help.
৯৬, পাকা ধানে মই দেওয়া-To do a great injury.
৯৭, পাগলে কিনা বলে ছাগলে কিনা খায়-A mad man and an animal have no difference.
৯৮, পাপের ধন প্রায়শিত্তে যায়-Ill got, ill spent.
৯৯, পুরনো চাল ভাতে বাড়ে-All that is old is not bad.
১০০, পেটে খেলে পিঠে সয়-Pain is forgotten where gain follows.
১০১, পরের মন্দ করতে গেলে নিজের মন্দ আগে হয়-Harm watch, warm catch.
১০২, বসতে পেলে শুতে চায়-Give him an inch and he will take an ell.
১০৩, বার মাসে তের পার্বন-A succession of festivities the all year round.
১০৪, বিধাতার লিখন না যায় খণ্ডন-Inevitable are the decrees of God.
১০৫, বিয়ে করতে কড়ি, ঘর বাধতে দড়ি-Be sure before you marry of a house, where in tarry.
১০৬, ভাই ভাই ঠাই ঠাই- Brothers will part.
১০৭, ভিক্ষার চাল কাড়া আর আকাড়া- Beggars must not be chosen.
১০৮, ভাগ্যর লেখা খণ্ডায় কে-Fate cannot be resisted.
১০৯, ভাজ্ঞা মন জোড়া লাগে না-Lost credit is like broken glass.
১১০, ভাবিয়া করিও কাজ-Look before you leap.
১১১, মশা মারতে কামান দাগা-To take a hammer to spread a paster.
১১২, মরা হাতি লাখ টাকা-The very ruins of greatness are great.
১১৩, মা রক্ষ্ণী চঞ্চলা-Riches have wings.
১১৪, মাছের তেলে মাছ ভাজা-To gain without spending.
১১৫, মৌ্নতা সম্মতির লক্ষণ-Silence gives consent./Silence is half consent.
১১৬, মিষ্টি কথায় চিড়ে ভিজেনা- Fine words butter no parsnips.
১১৭, মূর্খই মূর্খের কদর করে-Fools paradises fools.
১১৮, যতক্ষন শ্বাস, ততক্ষণ আশ-While there is life there is hope.
১১৯, যার জ্বালা সেই জানে-The wearer best knows where the show pinches.
১২০, যার বিয়া তার খব র নাই পাড়াপড়শির ঘুম নাই- Though he is careless to make his mark, others are moving mountains for him.
121. যে রক্ষক সেই ভক্ষক- I am makers are law breakers.
122. যেমনি বাপ তেমনি ব্যাটা- Like father like son.
123. যেখানে বাঘের ভয় সেখানে রাত হয়- Dangers often comes where danger is feared.
124. যেম্ন কুকুর তেম্ন মুগুর- As is the evil, so is the remedy.
125. আপনি ভাল তো সব ভাল-To the good the world appears to be good.
126. ব্যননা বনে খাটাস রাজা-A dog is a lion in his lane.
127. রাখে আল্লাহ মারে কে- What good wills no frost can kill.
128. রতনে রতন চেনে মানিকে মানিক- Diamonds cuts diamond.
129. শাকদিয়ে মাছ ঢাকা- Hide in a superficial way.
130. সাবধানের মার নাই- Safe bind, safe find.
131. সস্তার তিন অবস্থা-Penny wise poun foolish.
132. সব ভাল যার শেষ ভাল তার-All’s well that that ends well.
133. সময় একবার বয়ে গেলে আর ফেরত আসে না- Time once lost cannot be regained.
134. সবুরে মেওয়া ফেলে- Patience has its reward.
135. হয় এসপার নয় ওসপার-To be desperate.
135. হাটের মাঝে হাড়ি ভাঙা-To wash one’s dirty line in public.
136.হাতি ঘোড়া গেল তল মশা বলে কত জল-Fools rush in in where anger fear to tread./ He would bend the bow of Ulysses.
137. কর্তর ইচ্ছায় কর্ম-Master’s will is law.
138. যতক্ষণ শ্বাস ততক্ষণ আশ- A drawing man catches at a straw.
139. যারে দেখতে নারি তার চলন বাকা-Faults are thick where love is thin.
140. যারে দেখতে নারি তার চলন বাকা-Faults are thick where love is thin.
141. তুমি কোথায় থাক?-Where do you put up?
142. এ বিষয়ে মতভেদ আছে--Opinions differ on this subject.
143. এ বাড়ীটি ভাড়া দেয়া হবে--The house is to let.
144. আমার বড় ক্ষুধা পেয়েছে--I feel very hungry.
145. আমার ঠান্ডা লেগেছে-- I have caught a cold.
146. নিজের চরকায় তেল দাও--Oil your own machine.
147. অনভ্যাসের ফোঁটা কপাল চড়চড় করে-- Every shoe fits not foot
148. পরিষ্কার পরিচ্ছন্ন ঈশ্বরভক্তির একটি দাপ-- Cleanliness is next of godliness
149. রক্তের টান বড় টান-- Blood is thicker than water.


BCS Cadre / Some questions of BCS ant others exam
« on: July 09, 2017, 11:05:00 PM »
৩৮তম বিসিএস প্রিলি প্রস্তুতি: জাতিসংঘ (এখান থেকেই ঘুরেফিরে প্রশ্ন আসে):: ৫০ টি প্রশ্ন
১. জাতিসংঘ গঠনের প্রধান উদ্যোক্তা কে?— মার্কিন প্রেসিডেন্ট এফডি রুজভেল্ট।
২. জাতিসংঘ এর নামকরণ করেন কে?— মার্কিন প্রেসিডেন্ট এফডি রুজভেল্ট।
৩. জাতিসংঘের নামকরণ করা হয় কবে?— ১ জানুয়ারি, ১৯৪২।
৪. জাতিসংঘের সচিবালয়ের প্রধান কে? — মহাসচিব।
৫. জাতিসংঘের সদর দপ্তর কোথায়? — নিউইয়র্ক,যুক্তরাষ্ট্র।
৬. জাতিসংঘের ইউরোপীয় র্কাযালয়—
৭. জাতিসংঘের সদর দপ্তরের জায়গাটি কে দান করেন— জন ডি রকফেলার জুনিয়র।
৮.জাতিসংঘের সদর দপ্তরের স্থপতি— ডব্লিউ হ্যারিসন।
৯.জাতিসংঘের সনদ স্বাক্ষরিত হয় কবে — ২৬জুন,১৯৪৫ সালে।
১০. জাতিসংঘ সনদ কার্যকরী হয় কবে থেকে— ২৪ অক্টোবর, ১৯৪৫।
১১.জাতিসংঘের সনদের রচয়িতা— আর্চিবাল্ড ম্যাকলেইশ (Archibald Macleish)।
১২.প্রতিবছর জাতিসংঘ দিবস পালিত হয়— ২৪শে অক্টোবর।
১৩. জাতিসংঘের প্রত্যেক সদস্য দেশ কোন পরিষদের সদস্য? — সাধারণ পরিষদের।
১৪. জাতিসংঘের সাধারণ পরিষদের প্রধানকে কি বলে — সভাপতি।
১৫. জাতিসংঘের সাধারণ পরিষদের প্রথম অধিবেশন অনুষ্ঠিত হয় কোথায়? — লন্ডনের ওয়েস্ট মিনিস্টার হলে।
১৬. জাতিসংঘের সাধারণ পরিষদের সভাপতি কত বছরের জন্য নির্বাচিত হয়— ১ বছরের জন্য।
১৭. জাতিসংঘের সাধারণ পরিষদের নিয়মিত বার্ষিক অধিবেশন শুরু হয় — সেপ্টেম্বর মাসের তৃতীয় মঙ্গলবার।
১৮. নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের সদস্যরাষ্ট্রের মোট সংখ্যা কত? — ১৫টি।
১৯. নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের স্থায়ী সদস্য রাষ্ট্র — ৫টি ( চীন, ফ্রান্স, রাশিয়া, যুক্তরাজ্য ও যুক্তরাষ্ট্র)।
২০. নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের অধিবেশন কতবার জাতিসংঘের সদরদপ্তরের ছাড়া অন্যত্র অনুষ্ঠিত হয়— ২বার।
২১. নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের অস্থায়ী সদস্য কত বছরের জন্য নির্বাচিত হয়— ২ বছরের জন্য।
২২. নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের সভাপতি কত বছরের জন্য নির্বাচিত হয়— ১ মাসের জন্য।
২৩. নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের কোনো সিদ্ধান্ত গ্রহণের জন্য কমপক্ষে কতটি সদস্য দেশের সম্মতির প্রয়োজন হয়— ৯টি(৫টি স্থায়ী সদস্য রাষ্ট্রসহ অতিরিক্ত ৪টি সদস্য রাষ্ট্রের)।
২৪. অর্থনৈতিক ও সামাজিক পরিষদের অধিবেশন সাধারণত বছরে কয়বার বসে— বছরে দু’বার একমাসব্যাপী।
২৫.অর্থনৈতিক ও সামাজিক পরিষদের সদস্য কত বছরের জন্য নির্বাচিত হয়— ৩ বছরের জন্য।
২৬. অর্থনৈতিক ও সামাজিক পরিষদের সদস্য দেশ কয়টি— ৫৪টি।
২৭. প্রতিবছর কয়টি রাষ্ট্র তিন বছর মেয়াদে অর্থনৈতিক ও সামাজিক পরিষদের সদস্য নির্বাচিত হয়— ১৮টি।
২৮. আন্তর্জাতিক আদালত প্রতিষ্ঠিত হয় — ২৪শে অক্টোবর,১৯৪৫ সালে।
২৯. আন্তর্জাতিক আদালতের বিচারকের সংখ্যা কত— ১৫ জন।
৩০. আন্তর্জাতিক আদালতের বিচারকের মেয়াদকাল— ৯ বছর।
৩১. জাতিসংঘের অফিসিয়াল ভাষা কয়টি ?— ৬টি (ইংরেজি, আরবি, ফারসি, চীনা, রুশ ও স্প্যানিশ)।
৩২. জাতিসংঘের বাজেট কোন পরিষদে ঘোষিত হয়— সাধারণ পরিষদে।
৩৩. জাতিসংঘ সনদে প্রথমে কতটি দেশ স্বাৰর করে— ৫১টি দেশ।
৩৪. জাতিসংঘের প্রথম মহাসচিব ছিলেন — ট্রাইগভে লাই (নরওয়ে) (১৯৪৬-১৯৫২)।
৩৫. জাতিসংঘ সচিবালয়ের কর্মকর্তা কর্মচারিগণ তাদের কাজকর্মের ভাষা হিসেবে কোন ভাষা ব্যবহার করেন — ইংরেজি অথবা ফরাসি।
৩৬. জাতিসংঘের কোন মহাসচিব.শান্তিতে মরণোত্তর নোবেল পুরস্কার পান— দ্যাগ হ্যামারশোল্ড (১৯৬১ সালে)।
৩৭. আয়তনে জাতিসংঘের ছোট দেশ কোনটি— মোনাকো। (১.৯৫ বর্গ কি.মি.)।
৩৮.জনসংখ্যায় জাতিসংঘের ছোট দেশ কোনটি— ট্রুভ্যালু।
৩৯. কোন দেশ প্রথমে জাতিসংঘ সনদে স্বাক্ষর না করেও জাতিসংঘের প্রতিষ্ঠাতা সদস্য হয়— পোল্যান্ড।
৪০. জাতিসংঘ বিশ্ববিদ্যালয় কোথায় অবস্থিত— টোকিও (জাপান)।
৪১. জাতিসংঘের সর্বোচ্চ কর্মকর্তা কে— মহাসচিব।
৪২. অছি পরিষদ কার অধীনে কাজ করে— সাধারণ পরিষদের।
৪৩. জাতিসংঘের কোন মহাসচিব বিমান দুর্ঘটনায় মারা যান — দ্যাগ হ্যামারশোল্ড (সুইডেন,১৯৬১)।
৪৪. জাতিসংঘের সদর দপ্তরটি কত একর জমির ওপর প্রতিষ্ঠিত— ১৭ একর।
৪৫. জাতিসংঘের আয়ের মূল উৎস কী— সদস্য দেশসমূহের চাঁদা।
৪৬. জাতিসংঘের মহাসচিব কোন পরিষদের সুপারিশে নিযুক্ত হন— নিরাপত্তা পরিষদের।
৪৭. জাতিসংঘের একমাত্র মুসলমান মহাসচিব কে— কফি আনান (ঘানা) (৭ম)।
৪৮. উ থান্ট কোন দেশের অধিবাসী ছিলেন— মিয়ানমার।
৪৯. জাতিসংঘে দেয় বাংলাদেশের চাঁদার পরিমাণ কত— নিজস্ব বাজেটের ০.০১% অংশ।
৫০. বাংলাদেশ জাতিসংঘের কততম অধিবেশনে সদস্য পদ লাভ করে?— ২৯তম।

BCS Cadre / Application of 38th BCS
« on: July 09, 2017, 11:02:31 PM »
সোমবার থেকে শুরু ৩৮তম বিসিএসের আবেদন

৩৮তম বিসিএসের আবেদন সোমবার থেকে শুরু হচ্ছে। এই বিসিএসের মাধ্যমে দুই হাজার ২৪ জন প্রথম শ্রেণির ক্যাডার কর্মকর্তা নিয়োগ দেয়া হবে। আগামী ১০ আগস্ট সন্ধ্যা ৬টা পর্যন্ত অনলাইনে চাকরিপ্রার্থীরা আবেদন করতে পারবেন।

জাতীয় পরিচয়পত্র (এনআইডি) নম্বর ছাড়া কেউ বিসিএস পরীক্ষায় অংশ নেয়ার জন্য আবেদন করতে পারবেন না। এ সংক্রান্ত বিস্তারিত তথ্য সরকারি কর্ম কমিশনের (পিএসসি) ওয়েবসাইট ( থেকে জানা যাবে।

এদিকে ৩৮তম বিসিএস পরীক্ষার অনলাইন আবেদন-সংক্রান্ত সমস্যার সমাধানে হেল্পলাইন খুলবে পিএসসি। কমিশনের কর্মকর্তারা প্রার্থীদের সমস্যার সমাধান দেবেন। টেলিটকের পাঁচটি নম্বরে প্রার্থীরা যে কোনো সমস্যা সম্পর্কে জানতে পারবেন। আবেদনের দিন থেকে পুরো প্রক্রিয়া চলাকালীন পর্যন্ত এই হেল্পলাইন চালু থাকবে।


8 Characteristics of Successful Business Owners

1) Have a Crystal Clear Vision
If you don’t have a crystal clear vision of the company you are trying to create, you can’t possibly create it.
Figure out exactly the type of company you are trying to build. For example, in five years how many customers will you have? How many employees? What will your revenues be?

2) Have a Written Strategic Plan
Your vision is your dream. Your plan details how you will achieve that dream.
Your plan should identify what you must accomplish in the next twelve months to get on the right path to achieving your long-term vision. Among other things, your plan must document your product strategy, marketing strategy and human resource strategy.

3) Set Shorter-Term Goals
The most successful entrepreneurs and business owners also set shorter-term goals. Specifically, they identify what they and their company need to achieve in the next quarter, monthly and week to meet their annual goals.
They also meet with their teams to ensure all employees understand these goals and work together to achieve them.

4) Ongoing Education
To succeed requires continual education. This includes reading books and magazines (offline and online), attending events and networking with other successful entrepreneurs and business owners.
Having business mentors is another great way to get ongoing education and advice.

5) Satisfy Your Customers
If you can’t satisfy customers, your business will fail.
Always keep your customers top of mind. Focus relentlessly on their needs; not just on your needs.

6) Be a Great Marketer
If you are truly satisfying your customers, you will grow through word of mouth.
But in most cases, you want or need to grow even faster. So make sure you have a comprehensive marketing plan in place. Of particular importance is your promotion plan, or your plan to attract new customers.
The key to your promotion plan is to leverage as many marketing channels as possible. For example, if you are attracting new customers from radio ads, pay-per-click advertising, partnerships, direct mail and newspaper ads, you will get many more new customers than competitors who may only leverage one of these channels.

7) Be Laser-Focused in Your Work
As an entrepreneur or business owner, you are constantly faced with new opportunities and ideas. The key to your success is staying focused. By creating plans and setting (and sticking to) goals, you will achieve more.
That’s not to say to avoid all new opportunities. Rather, make sure you focus on hitting your short-term goals first, and then set up periodic meetings (perhaps monthly) to consider new ideas or opportunities.

8) Never Give Up
The life of an entrepreneur or business owner isn’t easy. There’s always more work to be done. And on any given day there may be significant ups and downs, such as landing or losing a big client.
Never give up. Build up a tolerance to the downs and realize that if you keep focusing on attaining your goals, you will.
We should all cherish the opportunity we have to run a business. By following these eight practices listed above, you can get the most out of your business and achieve the success you desire.


3 Ways to Become a Successful Business Owner

1. Find a mentor

My rich dad was my mentor. A mentor is someone who has already done what you want to do and is successful at doing it. My rich dad taught me about systems and how to be a leader of people, not a manager of people. Managers often see their subordinates as inferiors. Leaders must direct people who are often smarter than they are.

A traditional way to do this is to get your MBA from a prestigious school and then get a fast-track job that takes you up the corporate ladder. An MBA will teach you about the basics of accounting and how the financial numbers relate to your systems, but having an MBA doesn't mean you're competent to run a business. You'll need to spend 10 to 15 years in a company to learn all the different aspects of business. Then, you should plan on leaving to start your own company. Working for a successful major corporation is like being paid by your mentor.

Even with a mentor and years of experience, building a business from scratch is labor-intensive. Creating your own system requires a lot of trial and error, up-front legal costs, and paperwork. All of this occurs while you're trying to develop and lead your people.

2. Buy a franchise

If you don't want to take the time to build your own business systems, you can buy a franchise. When you buy a franchise, you're buying into a proven operating system. The advantage of buying a franchise is that you can take the time you'd spend building your systems to focus on developing your team. And because banks like to make loans to businesses with good, proven systems, they'll often give a loan to a franchise but not to a start-up.

A word of caution: Don't buy a franchise if you want to do things your own way. You must be ready to do everything the way the franchisors tell you. You don't call the shots, but you do own the system. If you want to do your own thing, do it after you've mastered both building your own system and leading people.

3. Get involved in network marketing

Network marketing often gets a bad rap. Because it's a newer form of business system, many people look at it suspiciously and think of it as a scam. Initially, I felt this way too. But after dropping my prejudices and doing some research, I found many people who were sincerely and diligently building successful network-marketing businesses that made a positive impact on their financial futures and others'.

For a reasonable entry fee (often around a few hundred bucks), you can buy into an existing system and immediately begin building a business. And because of technology, this can be done almost entirely online and automated. Paperwork, order processing, distribution, accounting, and follow-up are almost entirely managed by the network-marketing software. This allows you to focus on building your business instead of worrying about the normal start-up headaches of a small business.

Source and details:[/size]

25 Common Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

1. Do what you enjoy.
What you get out of your business in the form of personal satisfaction, financial gain, stability and enjoyment will be the sum of what you put into your business. So if you don't enjoy what you're doing, in all likelihood it's safe to assume that will be reflected in the success of your business--or subsequent lack of success. In fact, if you don't enjoy what you're doing, chances are you won't succeed.

2. Take what you do seriously.
You cannot expect to be effective and successful in business unless you truly believe in your business and in the goods and services that you sell. Far too many home business owners fail to take their own businesses seriously enough, getting easily sidetracked and not staying motivated and keeping their noses to the grindstone. They also fall prey to naysayers who don't take them seriously because they don't work from an office building, office park, storefront, or factory. Little do these skeptics, who rain on the home business owner's parade, know is that the number of people working from home, and making very good annual incomes, has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years.

3. Plan everything.
Planning every aspect of your home business is not only a must, but also builds habits that every home business owner should develop, implement, and maintain. The act of business planning is so important because it requires you to analyze each business situation, research and compile data, and make conclusions based mainly on the facts as revealed through the research. A business plan also serves a second function, which is having your goals and how you will achieve them, on paper. You can use the plan that you create both as map to take you from point A to Z and as a yardstick to measure the success of each individual plan or segment within the plan.

4. Manage money wisely.
The lifeblood of any business enterprise is cash flow. You need it to buy inventory, pay for services, promote and market your business, repair and replace tools and equipment, and pay yourself so that you can continue to work. Therefore, all home business owners must become wise money managers to ensure that the cash keeps flowing and the bills get paid. There are two aspects to wise money management.

The money you receive from clients in exchange for your goods and services you provide (income)
The money you spend on inventory, supplies, wages and other items required to keep your business operating. (expenses)
5. Ask for the sale.
A home business entrepreneur must always remember that marketing, advertising, or promotional activities are completely worthless, regardless of how clever, expensive, or perfectly targeted they are, unless one simple thing is accomplished--ask for the sale. This is not to say that being a great salesperson, advertising copywriting whiz or a public relations specialist isn't a tremendous asset to your business. However, all of these skills will be for naught if you do not actively ask people to buy what you are selling.

6. Remember it's all about the customer.
Your home business is not about the products or services that you sell. Your home business is not about the prices that you charge for your goods and services. Your home business is not about your competition and how to beat them. Your business is all about your customers, or clients, period. After all, your customers are the people that will ultimately decide if your business goes boom or bust. Everything you do in business must be customer focused, including your policies, warranties, payment options, operating hours, presentations, advertising and promotional campaigns and website. In addition, you must know who your customers are inside out and upside down.

Related: Keeping Your Customers Satisfied -- It's All in the Details

7. Become a shameless self-promoter (without becoming obnoxious).
One of the greatest myths about personal or business success is that eventually your business, personal abilities, products or services will get discovered and be embraced by the masses that will beat a path to your door to buy what you are selling. But how can this happen if no one knows who you are, what you sell and why they should be buying?

Self-promotion is one of the most beneficial, yet most underutilized, marketing tools that the majority of home business owners have at their immediate disposal.

8. Project a positive business image.
You have but a passing moment to make a positive and memorable impression on people with whom you intend to do business. Home business owners must go out of their way and make a conscious effort to always project the most professional business image possible. The majority of home business owners do not have the advantage of elaborate offices or elegant storefronts and showrooms to wow prospects and impress customers. Instead, they must rely on imagination, creativity and attention to the smallest detail when creating and maintaining a professional image for their home business.

9. Get to know your customers.
One of the biggest features and often the most significant competitive edge the home based entrepreneur has over the larger competitors is the he can offer personalized attention. Call it high-tech backlash if you will, but customers are sick and tired of hearing that their information is somewhere in the computer and must be retrieved, or told to push a dozen digits to finally get to the right department only to end up with voice mail--from which they never receive a return phone call.

The home business owner can actually answer phone calls, get to know customers, provide personal attention and win over repeat business by doing so. It's a researched fact that most business (80 percent) will come from repeat customers rather than new customers. Therefore, along with trying to draw newcomers, the more you can do to woo your regular customers, the better off you will be in the long run and personalized attention is very much appreciated and remembered in the modern high tech world.

Related: Why You Should Never Prejudge a Sales Prospect

10. Level the playing field with technology.
You should avoid getting overly caught up in the high-tech world, but you should also know how to take advantage of using it. One of the most amazing aspects of the internet is that a one or two person business operating from a basement can have a superior website to a $50 million company, and nobody knows the difference. Make sure you're keeping up with the high-tech world as it suits your needs.. The best technology is that which helps you, not that which impresses your neighbors.

11. Build a top-notch business team.
No one person can build a successful business alone. It's a task that requires a team that is as committed as you to the business and its success. Your business team may include family members, friends, suppliers, business alliances, employees, sub-contractors, industry and business associations, local government and the community. Of course the most important team members will be your customers or clients. Any or all may have a say in how your business will function and a stake in your business future.

Related: Why Teamwork Should Be Your No. 1 Sales Tool

12. Become known as an expert.
When you have a problem that needs to be solved, do you seek just anyone's advice or do you seek an expert in the field to help solve your particular problem? Obviously, you want the most accurate information and assistance that you can get. You naturally seek an expert to help solve your problem. You call a plumber when the hot water tank leaks, a real estate agent when it's time to sell your home or a dentist when you have a toothache. Therefore, it only stands to reason that the more you become known for your expertise in your business, the more people will seek you out to tap into your expertise, creating more selling and referral opportunities. In effect, becoming known as an expert is another style of prospecting for new business, just in reverse. Instead of finding new and qualified people to sell to, these people seek you out for your expertise.

13. Create a competitive advantage.
A home business must have a clearly defined unique selling proposition. This is nothing more than a fancy way of asking the vital question, "Why will people choose to do business with you or purchase your product or service instead of doing business with a competitor and buying his product or service?" In other words, what one aspect or combination of aspects is going to separate your business from your competition? Will it be better service, a longer warranty, better selection, longer business hours, more flexible payment options, lowest price, personalized service, better customer service, better return and exchange policies or a combination of several of these?

14. Invest in yourself.
Top entrepreneurs buy and read business and marketing books, magazines, reports, journals, newsletters, websites and industry publications, knowing that these resources will improve their understanding of business and marketing functions and skills. They join business associations and clubs, and they network with other skilled business people to learn their secrets of success and help define their own goals and objectives. Top entrepreneurs attend business and marketing seminars, workshops and training courses, even if they have already mastered the subject matter of the event. They do this because they know that education is an ongoing process. There are usually ways to do things better, in less time, with less effort. In short, top entrepreneurs never stop investing in the most powerful, effective and best business and marketing tool at their immediate disposal--themselves.

15. Be accessible.
We're living in a time when we all expect our fast food lunch at the drive-thru window to be ready in mere minutes, our dry cleaning to be ready for pick-up on the same day, our money to be available at the cash machine and our pizza delivered in 30 minutes or it's free. You see the pattern developing--you must make it as easy as you can for people to do business with you, regardless of the home business you operate.

You must remain cognizant of the fact that few people will work hard, go out of their way, or be inconvenienced just for the privilege of giving you their hard-earned money. The shoe is always on the other foot. Making it easy for people to do business with you means that you must be accessible and knowledgeable about your products and services. You must be able to provide customers with what they want, when they want it.

16. Build a rock-solid reputation.
A good reputation is unquestionably one of the home business owner's most tangible and marketable assets. You can't simply buy a good reputation; it's something that you earn by honoring your promises. If you promise to have the merchandise in the customer's hands by Wednesday, you have no excuse not to have it there. If you offer to repair something, you need to make good on your offer. Consistency in what you offer is the other key factor. If you cannot come through with the same level of service (and products) for clients on a regular basis, they have no reason to trust you . . . and without trust, you won't have a good reputation.

17. Sell benefits.
Pushing product features is for inexperienced or wannabe entrepreneurs. Selling the benefits associated with owning and using the products and services you carry is what sales professionals worldwide focus on to create buying excitement and to sell, sell more, and sell more frequently to their customers. Your advertising, sales presentations, printed marketing materials, product packaging, website, newsletters, trade show exhibit and signage are vital. Every time and every medium used to communicate with your target audience must always be selling the benefits associated with owning your product or using your service.

18. Get involved.
Always go out of your way to get involved in the community that supports your business. You can do this in many ways, such as pitching in to help local charities or the food bank, becoming involved in organizing community events, and getting involved in local politics. You can join associations and clubs that concentrate on programs and policies designed to improve the local community. It's a fact that people like to do business with people they know, like and respect, and with people who do things to help them as members of the community.

19. Grab attention.
Small-business owners cannot waste time, money and energy on promotional activities aimed at building awareness solely through long-term, repeated exposure. If you do, chances are you will go broke long before this goal is accomplished. Instead, every promotional activity you engage in, must put money back in your pocket so that you can continue to grab more attention and grow your business.

20. Master the art of negotiations.
The ability to negotiate effectively is unquestionably a skill that every home business owner must make every effort to master. It's perhaps second in importance only to asking for the sale in terms of home business musts. In business, negotiation skills are used daily. Always remember that mastering the art of negotiation means that your skills are so finely tuned that you can always orchestrate a win-win situation. These win-win arrangements mean that everyone involved feels they have won, which is really the basis for building long-term and profitable business relationships.

21. Design Your workspace for success.
Carefully plan and design your home office workspace to ensure maximum personal performance and productivity and, if necessary, to project professionalism for visiting clients. If at all possible, resist the temptation to turn a corner of the living room or your bedroom into your office. Ideally, you'll want a separate room with a door that closes to keep business activities in and family members out, at least during prime business and revenue generating hours of the day. A den, spare bedroom, basement or converted garage are all ideal candidates for your new home office. If this is not possible, you'll have to find a means of converting a room with a partition or simply find hours to do the bulk of your work when nobody else is home.

22. Get and stay organized.
The key to staying organized is not about which type of file you have or whether you keep a stack or two of papers on your desk, but it's about managing your business. It's about having systems in place to do things. Therefore, you wan to establish a routine by which you can accomplish as much as possible in a given workday, whether that's three hours for a part-time business or seven or nine hours as a full-timer. In fact, you should develop systems and routines for just about every single business activity. Small things such as creating a to-do list at the end of each business day, or for the week, will help keep you on top of important tasks to tackle. Creating a single calendar to work from, not multiple sets for individual tasks or jobs, will also ensure that jobs are completed on schedule and appointments kept. Incorporating family and personal activities into your work calendar is also critical so that you work and plan from a single calendar.

23. Take time off.
The temptation to work around the clock is very real for some home business owners. After all, you don't have a manager telling you it's time to go home because they can't afford the overtime pay. Every person working from home must take time to establish a regular work schedule that includes time to stretch your legs and take lunch breaks, plus some days off and scheduled vacations. Create the schedule as soon as you have made the commitment to start a home business. Of course, your schedule will have to be flexible. You should, therefore, not fill every possible hour in the day. Give yourself a backup hour or two. All work and no play makes you burn out very fast and grumpy customer service is not what people want.

24. Limit the number of hats you wear.
It's difficult for most business owners not to take a hands-on approach. They try to do as much as possible and tackle as many tasks as possible in their business. The ability to multitask, in fact, is a common trait shared by successful entrepreneurs. However, once in a while you have to stand back and look beyond today to determine what's in the best interest of your business and yourself over the long run. Most highly successful entrepreneurs will tell you that from the time they started out, they knew what they were good at and what tasks to delegate to others.

25. Follow-up constantly.
Constant contact, follow-up, and follow-through with customers, prospects, and business alliances should be the mantra of every home business owner, new or established. Constant and consistent follow-up enables you to turn prospects into customers, increase the value of each sale and buying frequency from existing customers, and build stronger business relationships with suppliers and your core business team. Follow-up is especially important with your existing customer base, as the real work begins after the sale. It's easy to sell one product or service, but it takes work to retain customers and keep them coming back.


Be a Business man/woman / 10 Tips for the First-Time Business Owner
« on: July 09, 2017, 10:53:43 PM »
10 Tips for the First-Time Business Owner

Focus. Focus. Focus.
Many first-time entrepreneurs feel the need to jump at every "opportunity" they come across. Opportunities are often wolves in sheep's clothing. Avoid getting side-tracked. Juggling multiple ventures will spread you thin and limit both your effectiveness and productivity. Do one thing perfectly, not 10 things poorly. If you feel the need to jump onto another project, that might mean something about your original concept.

Know what you do. Do what you know.

Don't start a business simply because it seems sexy or boasts large hypothetical profit margins and returns. Do what you love. Businesses built around your strengths and talents will have a greater chance of success. It's not only important to create a profitable business, it's also important that you're happy managing and growing it day in and day out. If your heart isn't in it, you will not be successful.

Say it in 30 seconds or don't say it at all.
From a chance encounter with an investor to a curious customer, always be ready to pitch your business. State your mission, service and goals in a clear and concise manner. Fit the pitch to the person. Less is always more.
Know what you know, what you don't know and who knows what you don't.
No one knows everything, so don't come off as a know-it-all. Surround yourself with advisors and mentors who will nurture you to become a better leader and businessman. Find successful, knowledgeable individuals with whom you share common interests and mutual business goals that see value in working with you for the long-term.

Act like a startup.
Forget about fancy offices, fast cars and fat expense accounts. Your wallet is your company's life-blood. Practice and perfect the art of being frugal. Watch every dollar and triple-check every expense. Maintain a low overhead and manage your cash flow effectively.

Learn under fire.

No business book or business plan can predict the future or fully prepare you to become a successful entrepreneur. There is no such thing as the perfect plan. There is no perfect road or one less traveled. Never jump right into a new business without any thought or planning, but don't spend months or years waiting to execute. You will become a well-rounded entrepreneur when tested under fire. The most important thing you can do is learn from your mistakes--and never make the same mistake twice.

No one will give you money.
There, I said it. No one will invest in you. If you need large sums of capital to launch your venture, go back to the drawing board. Find a starting point instead of an end point. Scale down pricey plans and grandiose expenditures. Simplify the idea until it's manageable as an early stage venture. Find ways to prove your business model on a shoestring budget. Demonstrate your worth before seeking investment. If your concept is successful, your chances of raising capital from investors will dramatically improve.

Be healthy.
No, I'm not your mother. However, I promise that you will be much more productive when you take better care of yourself. Entrepreneurship is a lifestyle, not a 9-to-5 profession. Working to the point of exhaustion will burn you out and make you less productive. Don't make excuses. Eat right, exercise and find time for yourself.

Don't fall victim to your own B.S.
Don't talk the talk unless you can walk the walk. Impress with action not conversation. Endorse your business enthusiastically, yet tastefully. Avoid exaggerating truths and touting far reaching goals as certainties. In short, put up or shut up.

Know when to call it quits.
Contrary to popular belief, a smart captain does not go down with the ship. Don't go on a fool's errand for the sake of ego. Know when it's time to walk away. If your idea doesn't pan out, reflect on what went wrong and the mistakes that were made. Assess what you would have done differently. Determine how you will utilize these hard-learned lessons to better yourself and your future entrepreneurial endeavors. Failure is inevitable, but a true entrepreneur will prevail over adversity.


How to Start a Small Business in a Few Hours

1. Get over the company-name thing.

Many people agonize endlessly over dreaming up the perfect company name. Don't. If you're waiting until you come up with the perfect name, you're also waiting to start making money.

Instead, at least for now, forget branding and unique selling propositions and all the business-identity stuff. And don't worry about finding the perfect URL or website design or promotional literature. You're putting those carts way before your business horse, too.

Just pick a name so you can get the administrative ball rolling.

Remember, your business can operate under a different name than your company name. (A "doing business as" form takes minutes to complete.) And you can change your company name later, if you like.

2. Get your Employer Identification number (EIN).

An EIN is the federal tax number used to identify your business. You don't need an EIN unless you will have employees or plan to form a partnership, LLC, or corporation.

But even if you don't need an EIN, get one anyway: It's free, takes minutes, and you can keep your Social Security number private and reduce the chance of identity theft, because if you don't have an EIN, your SSN identifies your business for tax purposes.

Note: If you're using an online legal service to set up an LLC or corporation, don't use it to get your EIN. Instead, apply online at the IRS website. You'll have your EIN in minutes.

Now it's time to head to your locality's administrative offices.

3. Register your trade name.

If you won't operate under your own name, your locality may require you to register a trade name. In most cases, you'll get approved on the spot.

4. Get your business license.

Your county or city will require a business license. The form takes minutes to fill out. Use your EIN instead of your Social Security number to identify your business (for privacy reasons if nothing else).

You may be asked to estimate annual gross receipts. Do your best to estimate accurately, but don't agonize over it. You're just providing an estimate.

5. Complete a business personal-property tax form (if necessary).

Businesses are taxed on "personal" property, just like individuals. Where I live, no form is required for the year the business is established.

If you are required to file a business personal-property tax form and you plan to work from home using computers, tools, etc., that you already own, you won't need to list those items.

If you purchase tangible personal property during your first year in business, you will list those items when you file your business personal-property tax form the following year.

6. Ask your locality about other permits.

Every locality has different requirements. In my area, for example, a "home occupation permit" is required to verify that a business based in a home meets zoning requirements.

Your locality may require other permits. Ask. They'll tell you.

7. Get a certificate of resale (if necessary).

A certificate of resale, also known as a seller's permit, allows you to collect state sales tax on products sold. (There is no sales tax on services.)

If you will sell products, you need a seller's permit. Your state department of taxation's website has complete details, forms, etc., if you decide to apply online, but most localities have forms you can complete while you're at their administrative offices.

8. Get a business bank account.

One of the easiest ways to screw up your business accounting and possibly run afoul of the IRS is to commingle personal and business funds (and transactions). Using a business account for all business transactions eliminates that possibility.

Get a business account using your business name and EIN, and only use that account for all business-related deposits, withdrawals, and transactions.

Pick a bank or credit union that is convenient. Check out your local credit unions; often they provide better deals than banks.

9. Set up a simple accounting spreadsheet.

Worry about business accounting software like QuickBooks later. For now, just create a spreadsheet on which you can enter money you spend and money you receive.

Bookkeeping is simple, at least at first. All you need are Revenue and Expenses columns; you can add line items as you go.

Instead of spending hours playing with accounting software, dreaming up potential expense and income categories, and creating fancy reports with no data, spend that time generating revenue. As long as you record everything you do now, creating a more formal system later will be fairly easy. It will also be more fun, because then you'll have real data to enter.


Use of email / Proper Email Address Etiquette
« on: July 09, 2017, 10:48:25 PM »
Proper Email Address Etiquette

To, Cc and Bcc: What’s the Difference?

Most people know what happens when they address mail TO: people when creating a new message.

However, they are less sure about the two other options: CC: (carbon copy) and BCC: (blind carbon copy).

Use To: For Private Messages

If you are sending the message to only one address then the TO: option should be used.

Use BCC: for Lists

If you are sending the message to multiple addresses then the BCC: option should be used so that each person sees only their own address.

Use CC: Only in Special Cases

The CC: option essentially works the same way as the TO: option. Everybody will see the addresses included there. The main difference is intent.

In most cases you'll use the CC: option when you want to keep someone in the loop but no action is required AND all parties know the address. See the example below.

Source and details:


1. Include a clear, direct subject line.

Examples of a good subject line include "Meeting date changed," "Quick question about your presentation," or "Suggestions for the proposal."

"People often decide whether to open an email based on the subject line," Pachter says. "Choose one that lets readers know you are addressing their concerns or business issues."

2. Use a professional email address.

If you work for a company, you should use your company email address. But if you use a personal email account--whether you are self-employed or just like using it occasionally for work-related correspondences ---you should be careful when choosing that address, Pachter says.

You should always have an email address that conveys your name so that the recipient knows exactly who is sending the email. Never use email addresses (perhaps remnants of your grade-school days) that are not appropriate for use in the workplace, such as "babygirl@..." or "beerlover@..." -; no matter how much you love a cold brew.

3. Think twice before hitting 'reply all.'

No one wants to read emails from 20 people that have nothing to do with them. Ignoring the emails can be difficult, with many people getting notifications of new messages on their smartphones or distracting pop-up messages on their computer screens. Refrain from hitting "reply all" unless you really think everyone on the list needs to receive the email, Pachter says.

4. Include a signature block.

Provide your reader with some information about you, Pachter suggests. "Generally, this would state your full name, title, the company name, and your contact information, including a phone number. You also can add a little publicity for yourself, but don’t go overboard with any sayings or artwork."

Use the same font, type size, and color as the rest of the email, she says.

5. Use professional salutations.

Don't use laid-back, colloquial expressions like, "Hey you guys," "Yo," or "Hi folks."

"The relaxed nature of our writings should not affect the salutation in an email," she says. "Hey is a very informal salutation and generally it should not be used in the workplace. And Yo is not okay either. Use Hi or Helloinstead."

She also advises against shortening anyone's name. Say "Hi Michael," unless you're certain he prefers to be called "Mike."

6. Use exclamation points sparingly.

If you choose to use an exclamation point, use only one to convey excitement, Pachter says.

"People sometimes get carried away and put a number of exclamation points at the end of their sentences. The result can appear too emotional or immature," she writes. "Exclamation points should be used sparingly in writing."

7. Be cautious with humor.

Humor can easily get lost in translation without the right tone or facial expressions. In a professional exchange, it's better to leave humor out of emails unless you know the recipient well. Also, something that you think is funny might not be funny to someone else.

Pachter says: "Something perceived as funny when spoken may come across very differently when written. When in doubt, leave it out."

8. Know that people from different cultures speak and write differently.

Miscommunication can easily occur because of cultural differences, especially in the writing form when we can't see one another's body language. Tailor your message to the receiver's cultural background or how well you know them.

A good rule to keep in mind, Pachter says, is that high-context cultures (Japanese, Arab, or Chinese) want to get to know you before doing business with you. Therefore, it may be common for business associates from these countries to be more personal in their writings. On the other hand, people from low-context cultures (German, American, or Scandinavian) prefer to get to the point very quickly.

9. Reply to your emails--even if the email wasn't intended for you.

It's difficult to reply to every email message ever sent to you, but you should try to, Pachter says. This includes when the email was accidentally sent to you, especially if the sender is expecting a reply. A reply isn't necessary but serves as good email etiquette, especially if this person works in the same company or industry as you.

Here's an example reply: "I know you're very busy, but I don't think you meant to send this email to me. And I wanted to let you know so you can send it to the correct person."

10. Proofread every message.

Your mistakes won't go unnoticed by the recipients of your email. "And, depending upon the recipient, you may be judged for making them,"Pachter says.
Don't rely on spell-checkers. Read and re-read your email a few times, preferably aloud, before sending it off.

"One supervisor intended to write 'Sorry for the inconvenience,'" Pachter says. "But he relied on his spell-check and ended up writing 'Sorry for the incontinence.'"

11. Add the email address last.

"You don't want to send an email accidentally before you have finished writing and proofing the message," Pachter says. "Even when you are replying to a message, it's a good precaution to delete the recipient's address and insert it only when you are sure the message is ready to be sent."

12. Double-check that you've selected the correct recipient.

Pachter says to pay careful attention when typing a name from your address book on the email's "To" line. "It's easy to select the wrong name, which can be embarrassing to you and to the person who receives the email by mistake."

13. Keep your fonts classic.

Purple Comic Sans has a time and a place (maybe?), but for business correspondence, keep your fonts, colors, and sizes classic.

The cardinal rule: Your emails should be easy for other people to read.

"Generally, it is best to use 10- or 12- point type and an easy-to-read font such as Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman," Pachter advises. As for color, black is the safest choice.

14. Keep tabs on your tone.

Just as jokes get lost in translation, tone is easy to misconstrue without the context you'd get from vocal cues and facial expressions. Accordingly, it's easy to come off as more abrupt that you might have intended --you meant "straightforward," they read "angry and curt."

To avoid misunderstandings, Pachter recommends you read your message out loud before hitting send. "If it sounds harsh to you, it will sound harsh to the reader," she says.

For best results, avoid using unequivocally negative words ("failure," "wrong," or "neglected"), and always say "please" and "thank you."

15. Nothing is confidential--so write accordingly.

Always remember what former CIA chief General David Petraeus apparently forgot, warns Pachter: Every electronic message leaves a trail.


Use of email / How to communicate properly using email
« on: July 09, 2017, 10:42:06 PM »
How to communicate properly using email

1. Think of the “subject” line as a “summary” line
Every email has a subject line that many people use to determine whether or not they should read the email, save it or delete it. Think of the subject line as a summary of your email and try to add as much context as possible for the recipient.
For example, instead of just writing “Meeting notes” in the subject line, write a more descriptive subject like “Meeting notes from 2012 Strategic Planning meeting on Nov 10th”. This way the receiver can determine in an instant what to do with the email.

2. Be brief and to the point

Many business professionals are likely to receive over 100 emails a day. If you want your emails to be read, you need to make them brief. Read through the email before you send it and ask yourself if there is any way you can make it shorter and more to the point. In some cases you might want to attach a document with some of the text if you feel this is essential information that needs to be included in the email.

3. Make sure follow up actions are clearly articulated
Many emails contain follow up actions assigned to various people. If these actions are hidden in the text they stand a big risk of being missed. Make sure that all action items are clearly articulated with proper ownerships and deadlines. If you add this in a table it’s very easy for everyone to see.

4. Check your spelling
In my eyes it’s very unprofessional to send out email messages with spelling errors, especially since most email clients today have built in spell checkers that can help you correct your spelling mistakes.
If you are using Microsoft Outlook 2010 you can enable the option to “Always check spelling before sending” an email. This way you will be prompted if there is a spelling mistake in your text before you send an email – it’s a nice “safety net”.

5. Add a signature to your email
Make sure to add a proper business signature to your email. The signature should include your full contact details – including the email address. Make sure that the email hyperlink (mailto:) contains the correct email address. It’s happened numerous times that I’ve clicked an email address link in a signature and the address is someone else’s.

6. Add an automatic reply if you are unable to respond
If you are traveling, attending a conference, or just busy on a project and you are unable to respond to email within a reasonable time frame (I would say about one-two business days depending on the nature of your business), I recommend that you add an automatic reply to your email. This sets the right expectations and it enables the sender to contact someone else in case they need to get a rapid response. If you are using Microsoft Outlook 2010 with Microsoft Exchange 2010 you can add different automatic replies inside and outside the organization.

A final note on email communication
As a final note I would like to add that written text always sounds much harsher then the spoken words. You should never write an email to someone when you are upset, you might regret it the day after, and when you do, there is no way to take it back. Also, make sure to be polite, use proper greeting phrases and refrain from using abbreviations or jargon (at least when you are communicating with people outside your organization).


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