GuruQ, India’s Best and The Most Unique Digital Solution for Education
“To all budding entrepreneurs who are just starting their journey, I would say, persistence is the key. Success can only be achieved through continuous persistence, determination and a ‘nothing is impossible’ attitude”.
Minal Anand, Founder & CEO, GuruQ.
The India education system has taken a leap with a digital turn due to globalization and steady economic growth. The e-learning market today stands at a worth of over billions and the potential seems only brighter.
The online education market in India is the third largest in the world and this enables people to take better advantage of the resources available online. And with an invasion of brands like GuruQ the market for meticulously designed content is getting better.
Minal Anand, in conversation with Business Connect Magazine,
Business Connect: You claim to be “India’s best and the most unique digital platform”, how do you maintain the standard?
Minal: Our claim is substantiated by the quality standards that we implement. We have formulated some of the industry’s most rigorous quality mechanisms to ensure that we maintain global standards across our operational areas. Quality has always been paramount for us, each tutor on our platform undergoes 5-level background verification along with proficiency tests to gauge the tutor’s competency, attitude, and aptitude.
Business Connect: What drew your attention to the field of education?
Minal: When I taught underprivileged children here in India, I could recognize their brilliance and capability. However, they needed a helping hand in the form of quality education. Additionally, Indian students abroad continued to excel at academics, consistently outperforming their peers. The effect of quality education viz. schooling and extra-schooling were discernible from the performance of pupils there. Quality education is the only factor that determined positive learning outcomes for students who studied abroad.
Having said that, my inclination to transform Indian education is the result of a cumulative effect of my varied experiences mentioned above. I believe the right guidance and the educational atmosphere can propel Indian students to the next level. This is why I have started GuruQ – to help students get the right guidance from quality teachers.
Business Connect: You have experienced the education system of both our country and USA, did you feel there is some level of discrepancy in the nature of techniques?
Minal: The extensive use of practical learning, real-world applicability of learning techniques and globally acclaimed teaching methodologies mark the education system in the United States. But in India, we still seem to be stuck in a system when memorization, theory-based learning, and grades are given utmost importance rather than the implementation and practical use of knowledge. To sum it up, there is a huge scope for improvement in the Indian education system. I’m certain that adopting global education models into our education can have a far-reaching positive impact on student learning outcomes.
Business Connect: The market is changing and so are the trends, how do you keep up?
Minal: My technology team and I are constantly on the lookout for improving our digital infrastructure. We are consistently making enhancement to our existing features while introducing new ones simultaneously.
Business Connect: Being the founder and CEO of the company, how do you ensure its smooth functioning?
Minal: Being the Founder & CEO is a tedious task as is expected of the role, but it is my passion nonetheless. Firstly, I have ensured that GuruQ has a participative and democratic style of leadership, which creates a free exchange of ideas. I have nurtured a culture of interdepartmental collaboration and teamwork, using an open-floor seating plan to catalyze the same. Also, anyone in the organization is more than welcome to call upon me and discuss their ideas for the organization or the challenges that they are facing.
Business Connect: Initial days aren’t always sunshine and rainbows, how did you sail through your struggles?
Minal: As the popular adage goes, ‘Persistence is the key to success’. Initially, like any start-up, we were faced with numerous challenges that stemmed out of the digital infrastructure upon which GuruQ is built. However, thanks to the proactive attitude that we possess, we could take effective measures to minimize the effect of those challenges through sustained, preemptive action plans that we prepared.
Business Connect: What has been your learning during all these years so that our readers could prepare themselves for upcoming challenges?
Minal: Firstly, entrepreneurship has taught me that people are at the heart of successful organizations. Finding the right people for the right job roles can make or break businesses. Secondly, entrepreneurship is a learning experience – where one is required to learn and unlearn consistently. And finally, we entrepreneurs must have a tenacious focus on maximizing the value for our customers and stakeholders.
Business Connect: How do you ensure the unbreakable faith of clients in your company?
Minal: Quality is the foundation upon which our relationship with our customers is built. Our promise to provide a quality learning and teaching platform to our customers has been instrumental in our growth.
Business Connect: Do you believe in positive competition, what gives you an edge over your competitors?
Minal: Yes. Positive competition is quintessential to personal as well as business growth. It plays a crucial role in determining customer experience and the value that customers get from a business’ offering. It is a driver of innovation and better practices in any industry.
Speaking of our competitive edge, it is manifold.
Business Connect: What are your short term-long term plans?
Minal: Currently, our short-term goals include phase-wise expansion into other markets viz. states such as Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. We have a strong foothold in Delhi & NCR and are in the process of acquiring and verifying tutors in the above-mentioned states. As for our long-term objectives, we intend to become the leading aggregator of tutors in India, covering major cities and towns. Thus, transforming the way Indian students learn. Furthermore, we are planning to add various new and innovative functionalities into the platform and that addition is going to change the landscape of the ed-tech sector completely.
Business Connect: How are you giving back to society?
Minal: At GuruQ, socially impactful initiatives are paramount. Since the very beginning, we have devoted resources to initiate varied CSR programs every year. One such initiative is the GuruQ Knowledge Pyramid, a one-of-a-kind program with CRY to uplift underprivileged children. We conceived the idea of creating a pyramid with a number of bookshelves, wherein people can participate and donate books, resulting in the collection and donation of over 8,000 books. In the following years, we hired a truck and decorated it with Knowledge Pyramid branding. We named it the Knowledge Pyramid On-The-Go, which we promoted through digital campaigns. The motive behind this initiative was to enable more people to participate by removing the time and distance constraints that people had.
We are also proud to say that we sponsored the GuruQ-CRY Cyclothon that assisted in the education of a 1,000 underprivileged children for an entire year as a part of our commitment to changing India.
Business Connect: What are the milestones in your journey till now?
Minal: We have a goal-oriented approach to our growth strategy. Realizing each of these goals is a celebration of our small yet significant successes. This outlook propels our growth consistently. However, some of these milestones would be reaching 1,000+ hours of tutoring, on-boarding 15,000+ tutors, launching our core services in tutoring, to name a few.
Minal Anand, strongly believes in what Benjamin Franklin once said: “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”
She further adds that an informed business decision requires knowledge and knowledge requires research. One can then build path-breaking business strategies based on that knowledge and drive business growth optimally. Therefore, if one is in a managerial or decision-making role in today’s highly competitive market, it is essential for them to make decisions based on proper research.