Saurabh is Vice President at Paytm. He is heading the ‘Paytm – Build for India’ program and also has an active role in startup products, developer relations, social impact / CSR, education and training within Paytm.
Our host Jibran Ahmed had a pleasure to talk to this great personality. Here’s what he message he has for the world.
Q1. Your passion for coding was fueled by your desire to code a video game which is quite similar to Elon Musk. You both have ended up bringing a revolution. But still, India as a society is super convenient when it comes to choosing one’s career in the direction of their passion. Most people look down upon video games. How do you think such thinking can be changed?
Saurabh Jain: what I realised is that video games can be a force for teaching also and mostly we believe that most of the curriculum in school is useless and concepts are not used in day to day life but what i saw was 50% of the maths that is being taught in the school is used for making video games its a very interesting thing.second this is every kid have different passion and generally what we see in India is parents want their kids to do a specific thing.
So, I started coding and I made a maker space where I call students from the neighbourhood and used to teach them Python and coding and other languages as well.so there was this boy who was in 8th standard and his mother used to come and like she was very motivated to send her son to me for this.suddenly there comes a day when his mother came to me and told I want to discontinue this class for him he doesn’t have time He needs to get himself enrolled in Akash institute and he will do IIT. We want him to join google, the same thing that I was teaching was then taught to him in that institute. I was so shattered.
So the main thing I realised is it’s very difficult to make Indian parents understand that let your kid what he wants to. I would like to end this by a note that there are barriers of entry like if you are from XYZ university we will not make you VP but if you are from IIM or IIT they will make you VP but won’t make you CEO, and the CEO will be from USA return of studied from Stanford or Harvard.these are some barriers to entry So like the cast system before had a big impact of everyone’s life and this institution barrier hopefully should be removed within 10 years.
2. You wanted to be a coder but circumstances led you to become a CA. You said your career was shaped not in college but in school. You faced a lot of problems (like unable to study commerce with computers). The Indian education system has been in debate since times eternal. How do you think change can be brought around?
Saurabh Jain: Education system will change like the internet have made everything available. Unfortunately for me, the internet came like 3 years late so if look at the bright side when I passed 12th internet started coming although the internet was pretty expensive so I had to go to my cousin’s office and there I used to use, and I was the person in my society who had set up a full cable and internet connection. But those things are resolving like I am always interested in video games and coding. What I realised after so many years of experience its all about media hype like making games the main hard work is done by designers so that time I became a coder. Then our family had a terrible loss I lost my father and my mother was not comfortable in me pursuing engineering.
Then I went for CA my mom had great support for me I learned java through her books and during 2000 I used to order books from java when things used to deliver in 2 months.
Then I came to know about the mobile app through Microsoft event and fortunately, I got a call from Nokia and there the apple fell for me.
Q3. Every company prepares for failure and aims for success, but no one has a definite plan when success happens all of a sudden. That becomes a deciding point of success or failure. What are your views?
Saurabh: Once I got this failure in CA I had to apply for the second group of exam and I was not well that time so I planned to drop it but my mom told like even if you dropped you will call as a failure only.
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