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Business of coaching businessmen

Meet Your Entrepreneur

Meghdoot Sharon  |  Ahmedabad 

He is an entrepreneur with a difference. He is a "friend, philosopher and guide" of other entrepreneurs and his job is making their fledgling businesses a success.

 
Rajeiv Bakshi, the chief executive of the Ahmedabad-based Possible Growth Solutions, is a 'business coach', a profession not so popular in India. He helps the entrepreneurs make their start-ups more organised, focused and stronger.

 
Rajeiv started his business in January 1999 and has so far worked as a business coach for 16 organisations.

 
His job profile includes helping business organisations in all areas of activity "" from procuring raw materials to manufacturing and from maintaining accounts and reports to marketing.

 
"In fact, I start off with signing a contract as a business coach, but end up being a friend, philosopher and guide of the head of the company for which I provide service. We chalk out a five-year programme for the company," Rajeiv says.

 
When he signs a contract with the client, he becomes the de facto chief executive of the company. The contract period ranges anywhere from six months to two years and Bakshi charges anywhere between Rs 50,00 and Rs 12 lakh as his fees depending on the nature of work.

 
The companies that he has helped revive so far include FMCG and herbal medicine firms, tile manufacturers, logistics providers, industrial units and bio-fuel plants.

 
"Everyone I have worked with so far still call me up and persuade me to work with them for more than two years," Rajeiv says. He does not work for more than three or four companies at a time.

 
The idea of taking up the profession of a business coach struck Rajeiv in 1998, when he chanced to meet a Swedish, Carloss Persson, in Goa.

 
"We had a lengthy conversation and his profession interested me a lot. It was then that I thought I could create just two or three companies in my life, but if I start a business consultancy, I could create around 40 strong companies in a decade," says Rajeiv.

 
But even before that, Rajeiv says entrepreneurs regularly approached him, seeking business tips and suggestions.

 
"When these would click, they would call me up again, seeking more guidance. That also prompted me to take up this profession," says Rajeiv.

 
Although the concept of a business coach is popular in other countries, it is yet to catch up in India, says Bakshi.

 
Bakshi, who earlier was the marketing head of Softel and has also worked with the subsidiary companies of Tata, Birla-Yamaha and Polar before starting Possible Growth Solutions, says he now plans to expand his business outside Gujarat.

 
Although he has had clients in Bhopal, Jaipur and Mumbai, he plans to promote the concept of hiring a business coach more widely in other parts of the country.

 
His day is divided into two. He will be with one client in the first half of the day and with another in the second half.

 
Rajeiv practices yoga and meditation and makes it a point not to miss his daily walk at 5 am.

 
"I am a family man. If I am not working, I want to be with my family," Rajeiv said.

 

First Published: Fri, October 17 2003. 00:00 IST
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