Zanzeria Family Consultants is a Bangalore based startup founded by Ayaz Shabbir Zanzeria in 2017. They offer content development, wealth management, accounting and bookkeeping, customer service and soft skill training as primary services as primary services.
“For me, location is not an issue or a constraint. I could have been based in any part of the country or the world. My service offering is what I take pride in”, says Ayaz.
We got an opportunity to talk with Ayaz, the founder of Zanzeria Family Consultants. Let’s look at his journey of being an entrepreneur. And I am sure it will inspire you as well.
Give a brief info about your startup?
I started this company in June 2017 as a content development company. In September 2017, I had to take a break from my company as I was involved with another startup that was also into content development. Now, I am focused on my company with revamped branding and renewed energy to make a fresh start.
What made you start your startup and what problem does it solve?
In the beginning of June 2017, I had to decide for my career path. Either I hunt for a job or start my own firm. The applicant tracking system used everywhere was so horrible that I would never get selected even if the job description matched my profile. I never got responses. All my applications were falling into black holes. Even if I did get the initial email to attend an interview, the recruiters were totally non-responsive and did not believe in replying to emails, messages or phone calls. Frustrated with this scenario, I decided to start my own business with some of my hard-earned savings.
Tell us about yourself, your previous jobs/ventures? What were you doing before this startup?
I have work experience spanning different companies in different domains across seventeen years. In some of these companies, I have fulfilled varying roles and responsibilities at different levels in the corporate hierarchy. All my years of working in different companies has been filled with different types of learning – technical, non-technical, qualitative, quantitative, analytical, managerial, judgmental, etc. When I look back and reflect, I feel that I have invested nearly seventeen years of my life journey in learning how companies run and do business.
Where is your startup based out of? Why do you think that is the best place for you?
My startup is based in HSR Layout in Bangalore. For me, location is not an issue or a constraint. I could have been based in any part of the country or the world. My service offerings and my style of working are what I take pride in.
As a startup founder, what are you paranoid about? What keeps you awake at night?
I am paranoid about the growth path of the company. Considering my clientele and the growth rate at which I am going, I am constantly looking to expand globally. I am paranoid about my investment strategies which can help grow your own money organically and with least risk. I offer financial advice that no “wealth manager” will offer. I can help you with trading strategies that will help you grow your money at a consistent rate of 30% year on year.
Along with this, I also offer content development services, customer service and soft skill training as well. I was in the customer service industry for nearly 10 years and have seen and experienced the customer service aspects from both sides. Hence, I can deliver the training based on real life scenarios on how it can be made better.
Who are your competitions and how are you better than them?
There are plenty of “wealth managers” and “financial advisors” out there who will help you invest your money in products on the pretext of being your well-wishers. However, the chosen investment option may not be suitable for short-term and/or long-term growth. Irrespective of the returns, these “wealth managers” and “financial advisors” do get their commission anyways by selling the product to you.
Here, I make a difference as I help with investment strategies. These strategies are based on my experience and research. These are not taught in any University, Institute, School or College. None of the “wealth managers” or “fund managers” or “financial advisors” will be able to give such advice. I charge money for helping with strategizing and planning investments and not for selling products.
For content development, I do have plenty of competitors. I do not wish to compete with anyone. Rather, people who have interacted with me, trust me and will prefer me. For the others, it’s their choice, I respect their decision.
How hard is it to have a work life balance as a startup founder and how do you manage it?
I am a very strong advocate of allocating time aside for family and personal life. I do that as and when I get an opportunity. I do not have a fixed work day off, rather, I take the day off when I feel like.
Have you raised funding? If yes, then we would like to know the details. If not, then please tell us if you are looking to raise.
I have not raised funding. I am not willing to get an investor on board my company. In other words, I am not willing to grant a share of my company to a third person. If a person is willing to invest in my company, give me the money and forget it.
What’s the biggest misconception people have about you? Why do they have that? What’s the reality?
The biggest misconception is that people perceive me to be very eccentric in my thought process. The reason for this is that they only see what they want, and they are not willing to think differently. The reality is that I like to look beyond conventional thought process by challenging status quo. I like to be different. “If everybody thinks alike, then nobody thinks much.” This is a quote that I had come across long back and this got me thinking of how I can be different. Hence, I endeavour to be different every time with every approach.
What gets you excited about this company?
The prima facia exciting factor of my company is the type of service offering that I have on the table. Regular accounting, auditing, bookkeeping, etc are offered by majority of the accounting firms and freelancers. What makes me stand out from the crowd is the way I deal with my clients and the personal touch that I add to my service offerings. I prefer to use technology with a human touch. I do not wish to be totally dependant on technology and I do not want to do complete manual work as well. I prefer a balance of both.
Apart from this, I add a touch of my personal experience in my service offerings. This is lacking in majority of the products and/or services today. I very strongly believe that personalized service has the “feel good” factor which is what I bring to the table. This gives an added trust factor. My style of public relations is what gets me real excited. Every day, I think of new ways to interact with my people.
Tell us how a day in your life looks like? Your schedule for a day right from the time you get up till you hit the bed at night.
I wake up anywhere between 8 am to 10 am. I do not believe in setting rigid time tables to follow. After breakfast with family, I sit down with my laptop to attend to my work and emails. I do not have much of emails to attend to, however, I make it a point to stay on top of my emails. I do a mix of social media, work, phone calls, emails as part of my work.
At around 1.30 pm, I take a break to have lunch with family. After that, its back to my work. All my days are not like this. At times, I go out for client meetings, bank work, or any other personal task. At around 8.30 pm, it’s time for dinner with family. Effectively, in a week, I make it a point to at least have lunch and dinner with family if not breakfast. I do this as a routine or a habit. This practice helps me to maintain my work-life balance very effectively, this lifestyle helps to me work all seven days of the week as I do not have a dedicated day for my family.
For me, I decide my work timings, I decide my work offs and I decide my holidays. I am my own boss. I have become used to this lifestyle which is not present in any paid job. I am loving this. During the whole day, I take time to pursue my hobbies of shooting my own videos with inspirational messages in my YouTube channel (MADWithAZ), writing blogs, share trading, etc. I also help my wife in shooting recipe videos for her YouTube channel (ZFC).
I also have developed my own personal brand with my own logo, my Facebook profile page, LinkedIn page, medium account, my own personal website with my own domain.
Tell us about your team and how did you meet each other?
My team initially consisted of I, me and myself. In June 2017, I decided to start my own company as a one-man army as I had faith in my abilities to handle it. By God’s grace, I was able to get going and did get clients. In August 2017, I entered the world of LinkedIn and I came across plenty of wonderful individuals. I started interacting with people and very soon, I built a good network of people from around the globe.
In the beginning of this year, I decided to expand my service offerings from content development to encompass personal finance management, accounting and auditing, customer service and soft skill training, coaching and mentoring and consulting services as well.
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