Words. Wisdom. Winners.

Who are you meeting today?

Nothing, NOTHING AT ALL, does more to developing a relationship than meeting someone in person and talking!

No amount of flowers

No amount of pleasant emails

No calls


Humans are meant to meet, to converse using emotions. And if you have to apologize, congratulate, resolve, clarify or update – and you can do it in person – do it!


What does it take to win?


Ajay Singh tells me that this deal took him 1.5 years to close! I would believe him anyday…

There was a time we used to run 1 deal for 3 days, because we didnt have many. Today the site has 950+ deals at any stage. All of them deals that we ourselves will buy.

There was no other path for us to get here. No money, no shortcut, no business model could have made us reach here faster – than the path we took. It is the hardest path – and is hasnt been easy. But its been the best journey we all could have wished for.

I am super proud of what and where we are today.

Varq, at the Taj Mahal Hotel New Delhi, featured on Groupon India

Varq Taj Mahal Groupon India

Your job is not to be nice to people…

Your job is to get the work done.

If during the process of doing so, you end up being nice to people (and people realize that), you are blessed. Not a lot of people can claim to be in such a position.

But one cannot CANNOT over-rule the job, in favor of being nice to people

The single most important advice to Graduate Students

One of the commandments that Groupon India operates by is

Value accuracy more than speed and speed more than perfection

In all your actions, accuracy of your work is more important than being the fastest to complete. Or fastest to respond. If you work has errors, it might as well be delayed but 100% accurate.

However, if you continue to make it 100% perfect, you are losing precious time and feedback. Speed is the most important attribute in decision-making and execution. And while it cannot come at the expense of accuracy, it should always come at the expense of perfection.

Back in August 2011, I had come up with this alongwith the other commandments. And this is perhaps the one I am proudest of – so much so that I surprise myself to have come up with this.

There isn’t a single day that goes by when I am not reminded or more convinced of this commandment. Decisions that are delayed, because people think they need more time. Errors crept in because people think responding to the email is more important. Processes not implemented because they are not perfect yet. Sheets of inaccurate data because someone said it has to be done in the next hour.

If there was only 1 advice that I could give to students in order to make them god-awesome professionals – this is it!

Appreciate accuracy, value time and dissociate perfection from accuracy.

Mistake of promoting someone

It is Appraisal month at Groupon. We had conducted the entire event last year in paper format and wanted to transfer all of it online.

In the hunt for a Performance Management Solution, we came across EmployWise – whom we have finally started working with. This is not an endorsement post, since we are yet to see its impact.

However, if their CEO’s words are anything to go by, it just might end up being a good move for us.

Sumeet Kapur, in our first meeting, made a point that I loved – it’s perhaps the single most obvious realization that I have had in the recent past.

“Never make the mistake of promoting someone based on their performance”

  1. The reward for performance should be monetary incentives
  2. A promotion, or the next level responsibility, is always a function of capability. Capability and performance are not always linked.

That makes SO much sense. It is not just a stark realization of the mistakes I have made in the past, but also such an obvious omission that happens every day, in every organization.

It is moments such as these, when I am reminded of what a close friend says all the time – “how can you not benefit from meeting people?”


The appraisals this year will be a very different exercise!

My experiment with lies

Though I love Quora, I see it tending towards the mass appeal category. Funny answers with no relevance to the question, celebrity responses much lower in quality, non-serious take on the questions – all these are drawing more votes than others. It doesn’t bother me on an intellectual level, but it does throw the answers I truly like below the order.

When I opened Quora last night I had a run of questions where the best answers where not even in the top 5-10 responses, pulled down by lower-quality-high-appeal answers.

I decided to conduct an experiment on one such question.

Posing anonymously, I replied on a life question, about something that didn’t happen to me. Rather my friend. However I replied as if it happened to me.
I lied!

But the incident is truly one of the best responses that could exist for that question. My experiment was – will it rise up the ranks, anonymously! No humor, definitely no celebrity. And no smart alec answer. Simple plain admission of an event in one’s life.

I woke up this morning to see the answer gone viral. 1400+ votes as of now, 53 heartwarming comments
The most touching aspect was people spending their credits to promote the answer. Whatever they had – people promoting it to 20 people – 40 people!

My experiment of lies succeeded. People exist!

Life is the best Social Network

“It would not have been possible without your help and guidance”

11 such statements have landed in my inbox since yesterday.

While grossly inaccurate in its assessment (would not have been possible), the intent is overwhelming to say the least. And that’s when it strikes you – while you are busy leading your own life your actions, your time, your responses and your statements are perhaps influencing others to lead theirs.

And that’s the same for you too.


And the same for your influencers too

And their’s too

Its the best social network – where no wall is needed, where sharing is inconspicuous and where you will most likely not be notified when you are tagged.


Emotions are precious

When was the last time you said, I love you

When was the last time you checked, are you doing ok?

When was the last time you acknowledged, I couldn’t have done this without you?

When was the last time you stated, thank god you were there?

When was the last time you expressed your emotions?

When was the last time you loved your own emotions?

Why is advice largely useless?

Answer by Ankur Warikoo:

I once read (and I concur)
Advice is what you seek when you know the answer but wish you didnt!

There is a big difference between seeking advice and seeking a path. An advice is mostly sought when you are indecisive – when you have the options generated, but don't know what to pick. And you would think that someone who has taken that decision before will be the best person to see advice from.

Not true! Their experiences are not yours – their advice will be severely "polluted" by the outcome of their decision – which, worst still, could be driven by the advice of someone else they sought it from!

Advice isn't useless because it doesn't tell you what you could do – its useless because it doesn't tell you what you should do!

Follow your gut – if you question yourself truly – you will know the answer – and most likely in a way that is better than anyone else's advice!

Don't take my advice for this – build yours! :)

PS: As mentioned, option generation (which isnt truly advice) is mostly great! Because you didn't even know what you could do! But once you do – don't go to someone asking what you should do!

View Answer on Quora

What is the best thing that happened to you in 2012?

Answer by Ankur Warikoo:

Towards the end of Feb, I began to experience pain while walking. The limp was evident, and the hip joint was the epicenter of the pain. I had started to take my exercise seriously about a week back, so maybe it was a muscle pull.

I ignored it.

A week later – I couldn’t walk! The pain was unbearable. I would lie down to sleep and the first hour would be terrible.

The x-ray suggested a slip disc. Minor though. So exercises were suggested. I adhered.

Nothing changed – the pain just became harder to deal with.

A 4th opinion led me to a hip MRI. And the diagnosis finally came – I had something called Avascular Necrosis (AVN). I was told to stop walking with immediate effect. The right hip bone was going dead and couldn’t take on the weight anymore.

AVN, in 80% of the cases happens because of excessive smoking, drinking or steroids. The rest is usually without identified causes – which is where I lay.

The cure – core decompression. A piece of the calf bone would be taken and crushed into powder. 2 holes will be drilled into the hip bone and the powder inserted. Over the course of 1.5 years, the hip bone would “regenerate”. It was a usual 1.5 hour surgery.

This meant that for 4-8 months I would need to walk on crutches.

Lets do it, I say!

All of this happened within 4 weeks of the first pain. I was operated upon on April 4th. I last walked on crutches Aug 31st and I ran for the first time Dec 17th.

This entire event was the best thing to have happened to me in 2012!

Because it taught me a lot about myself and the world

1. The world’s reaction to your pain is ONLY determined by your perception of that very pain and situation

2. Working from home actually works

3.  A 15-min break everyday at 11am, to play with your 1-yr old son is the best thing in the world!

4. There is this unexplained pride you derive, when you do things that people don’t expect you to. Especially around physical incapability.

5. Impossible is nothing!

View Answer on Quora

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