Mobile City

Altaf Rehmani
Altaf Rehmani
Projects
Director,Redbytes
Software
The Journey: Early Days to How I Got Here

I started my career with IT and was lucky to be in Hong kong straight out of college. That exposure taught me a few important things very quickly and that remained with me for years. The IT field is constantly changing and being aware about what is going on in the industry and the impact it has on consumers and businesses worldwide is what very IT professional be wary of.

Early days is a lot about learning, so keeping your head down and quickly becoming a master of your skill pays for the long term. Being good is no longer enough - you need to be better than people around you and also be able to fit into your company culture. After having spent more than a decade working for international firms, I decided to head back home to pursue my dream of starting on my own (redbytes software). Its been an exciting journey so far and in 3 years we are already a profitable and funded company.

Decisions That Mattered

Learn, share and help others around you. Whether it is your colleague, your boss or your financier? What are their challenges? how can you help them look better? if you can help others in a big way - you are on your way to monumental success. Choosing to work on something that interests you, being adaptable and open to learning newer things is also equally important.

The Turning Points

Getting a break in HK, working in a professional environment. Being a part of Asian and global financial crisis (1997 and 2008), working with some exceptional talent and finally the decision to return to India to pursue my dream.

Work and Role: Then and Now


I am wearing various management heads and taking decisions that impact the business as a whole - at the same time ensuring that what we do is fun and of value to our customers. Not everyone gets to choose what one works on and I am blessed in that regard. We are working on educational apps for kids which are very different from financial services where I spent most of my career.

Two Years down the Line


Leading one of the most innovative educational app companies, providing fun educational apps for toddlers and kids. 5 year from now - retire.

What I Learnt Along the Way

Be honest and ethical in all your dealings. Learn from everyone around you and keep your ego in check at all times. Take time consciously to brand and take yourself from where you are to where you want to be, Success is all about smart work with the right network. So be exceptional, create wow products, brand yourself / your organization and network with the right people.

Changing Days: Lessons Learnt

Working for someone and employing people are two extremes, both of which come with their own challenges. I did not make the decisions which shape the companys future. it was someone elses strategy and money. Now, I stand to lose if I dont get those things right.

My Advice If You are Starting Out


The mobile domain is here to stay for the next decade as a part of the computing cycles we have seen in the past. There are lots of opportunities for young and fresh minds. The idea is to focus on niches and create a position for you through innovation and working on things slightly ahead of the curve exploiting the solution gaps in the market. Hard work, perseverance and the ability to take risks to pursue what you are passionate about is what I would advise to anyone looking for long term success.

Must Focus Areas for the Future

HTM5/CSS3 for sure if you are into business apps. Learning some of the popular frameworks like phone gap and titanium is going to be handy. Companies solving integration problems across various OS, enabling collaborative apps, turning traditional content into fun, interactive and engaging one.

Do We Need Certifications?


Certifications are a good stamp to certify your credibility, but not an end game in them. At the end of the day - your skill/product/service has to help either consumers or businesses. Some of the top brilliant minds of our times did not even complete their formal education. Yourself belief and passion score more than your certificates.

Websites I Recommend

gigaom, techcrunch, chrisbogan,onstartups, readwriteweb, paulgraham

Books/authors

built to last, competing in a flat world, outliers, business of iPhone and iPad development, the secret, tony robins, robin sharma

Last But Not Least

I can be contacted on altafr@redbytes.in if I can be of any help to anyone. More than happy to share the lessons I have learnt in my career journey.
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