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Samiksha Seth
12 Sep 2016 . 5 min read

Why I Quit A Cushy Corporate Job To Start Talkingstreet.in


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She desired to work for herself, to be her own boss. Always inclined to seek creative solutions, she loved the freedom, creativity, and the experience that entrepreneurship promised. Her love for travel and exploring local cultures made her realize that discovering popular, local eateries required inside knowledge that was not easy to come by.  She then decided to help traveling foodies find the most popular places in different cities.  Meet Maheima Kapur, a marketing and sales professional, who quit her cushy corporate job, and founded talkingstreet.in.

I was born in Kolkatta,  brought up in Delhi,  moved to Bangalore to complete my graduation from the Satya Sai University and did my Post graduation from IIM Bangalore. I became financially independent in 2005 when I landed my first job at HUL, and kept moving up with different brands that include Lifebuoy, Tata Tea, and Britannia Cheese. I decided to quit in March 2014, to start my entrepreneurial journey.

Travel and food are an awesome combination!

During a visit to Berlin, some friends pointed us to a local Turkish eatery where we had the most delicious food. We would have never discovered it had they not directed us. This made me realize that discovering popular, small, local eateries require inside knowledge that is not easy to come by. You can understand the culture of a city through its eateries, and their owners. Most of these local eateries have been around for decades, and their owners have interesting stories to share.

At Talking Street we not only show where the food’s available but also share the legends  behind it. It helps travellers taste the culture of the city and shows them what the people are like. This make their experience richer, because it goes far beyond a simple meal. 

Talking Street is not a listing of the best places to eat; it is a curated set of eateries that have a history of offering a great food experience. We are planning to allow foodies to contribute stories about eateries that they discover, along with crowd-verification functionality, so that travellers can decide which eateries are worth visiting.

Lessons From My Entrepreneurial Journey

  • The need to manage and stretch time. There’s just never enough time in a day to get everything that needs to be done, completed.

  • The buck stops with me. Everything stops at the founder. If something has to be done, I’ve got to do it.  In a bigger organization,  responsibilities are divided.

  • An entrepreneur always stays connected. I believed in a sharp work-life balance and avoided carrying work on my mind when I was away from my laptop. That changed significantly with entrepreneurship. I’ve often caught myself being totally wired into work over weekends, holidays, days off. It’s not something I like, and I’m working to change that.

  • Holidays have become work actions. There’s always something to cover or research for Talking Street when I travel. While it’s fun, there are times when I feel like work follows me even on a vacation. 

  • Entrepreneurship is a road to self-discovery. It brings out traits that we often didn’t think we possess – both positive and negative. It helped me become more aware of my insecurities and failings.

  • Be firm in your belief and plow on, the path will emerge. Keep your burn low so that your runway is long, and you can sustain yourself even if the product takes time to blossom.

  • Connect with your user. A strong, well-researched use case is perhaps the most important criteria for a product.  At every stage of product development, it is critical to check how the user is interacting with the product. Many startup founders tend to ignore this, and end up building products that don’t resonate with users. That makes the adoption curve long and winding.

And This Is How You Win The Game  

  • Be unapologetic about what you are, and why you are where you are.

  • It’s ok to have a softer side, let it be visible. Over time, people recognize you for the value you add, the way you work, how you commit and complete tasks.

  • Be reliable. Complete what you say you will. Do it well, and on time.

  • Ask for help if needed.

  • Ask for flexibility if that makes life easier. Women typically balance a lot at work and at home. Flexibility goes a long way in making this journey easier. When jobs get done, people learn to accept different styles of working.

Meet The SHEROES celebrates women who dare to make a difference in whatever they chose to do. Do you know such SHEROES? Please do share in the comments below, and we will share their inspirational story with the world.


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Samiksha Seth
Samiksha Seth is a day dreamer by choice,an avid blogger, Reiki practitioner,firm believer of "Keep Faith", loves exploring and crafting experiences into words. She is a mother of a toddler and has resigned from her full time IT job, just to be with her child and take up her passion for writing.

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