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"As a kid, my parents gave me a very cosy childhood and fulfilled all my wishes. I was an average student in school, but I took a keen interest in playing cricket and badminton. During my 10th standard preparatory leave, I was sent to my sister’s place in Mumbai where she was pursuing her Masters course. It was my sister who guided me to make a monthly planner and study through charts and illustrations and every day after she got home from college, she would question me, on what I studied. Finally, after so many efforts by my family, I did come out with flying colors (smiles). This was the time, I recognized the importance of planning before beginning any work.
I went on to pursue Engineering away from home. I did get homesick as this was my first step out of my comfort zone and I missed home. But as it is said, friends are a home away from home, my friends helped me overcome that feeling and supported me to take on engineering with a smile. During my stay at the hostel, I valued the importance of minute things which I took for granted when I was at home like getting breakfast ready on the table, a clean room, clothes sorted and everything in place without doing anything myself. I started appreciating my mother’s care and was thankful for it – all this made me a stronger, more responsible and a more mature person. I comprehended, that after coming out of the comfort zone, anything might go wrong at any time and you need to stay alert and be responsible for your actions. In my final year of engineering, just before my exams my dad was unwell and I had to stay at home to manage things as well as study for my exam. It was my turn to be the pillar of strength to my parents.
However, I had many ups and downs in my college life and always learnt from my mistakes. These made me strong and taught me to be brave and face any situation, however tough it may be. I started enjoying the varied experiences I had, and learnt something from all of them. I also valued how important it was to challenge yourself and come out of your comfort zone to achieve a higher goal, each time. Now I believe, tough times don’t last, but tough people do!"
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"Belonging to an agricultural family, I grew up on my farm at Saswad, amongst greenery and lush landscapes and enjoyed farming in my young days. But when I saw my elder cousin move out to join the army, I was inspired to take up something else to carve a niche for myself. Thus after 8 years of farming and completing my high school, I moved to Pune to pursue my graduation in microbiology. During this time, I started working as an Oracle System Analyst in a manufacturing firm, to handle the ERP tasks in their manufacturing process. Always curious about IT and with a passion for development, I took up courses to learn to program. After graduation, I was working as a freelance developer when I got a development job through my professional network. In the meanwhile, my sister also took up a graduation in IT and did her post-graduation in food science and technology from Cardiff University and now works with a top dairy and FMCG company.

Together we plan to work for a few years and eventually move back to our hometown to pursue organic farming, crop rotation, companion planting, biological pest control, and mixed cropping. My experience in IT is helping me develop a system to handle perishability of products and climate change. During her course, my sister had learnt, how the use of organic ingredients can increase the shelf life of milk to 22 days without adding chemical preservatives. Using this know-how, I am developing a similar system for other products. I also have many ideas to use cloud-based systems to build applications to measure farm size, produce, check the right farming practices for a particular crop, and devise new methods and components for organic farming. I have found that multiple plants can be processed to make biodegradable paper bags that can replace plastic bags completely. I want to produce low-priced utility products which will be affordable, biodegradable and will help in pollution control. An organic dairy farm is also on the cards. An uncle of mine died while farming when lightning struck our farm. He had diverse farming ideas which I want to fulfill by employing my IT experience."
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“Always passionate about sales and marketing, I completed my post-graduation in marketing and started working. Though my family wished that I pursue human resources, I was determined on taking up marketing for its dynamism, interaction with people, the opportunity to travel and of course the aspect that it pays well. As a true sales person at heart, I took up a job with one of the top pharma companies of India in field sales and started traveling across India for work. My profession required me to visit customers, interact with them and get valuable exposure. I totally loved my work and was happy with the way my career had shaped up.

After 10 years of working in marketing, an interesting thought occurred to me. I wondered, that although I was catering to external customers through marketing, what would it be like to deal with internal customers through human resources? I understood that interacting and dealing with people would be there in human resources as well. Marketing had always kept me in the forefront of all promotional activities for my organization, but I felt that I wanted to be in the background and keep a low profile, after spending so many years in the limelight. So I decided to move to human resources but realized that I would need a degree in it first. Therefore, I took the step of enrolling in a second post-graduation in human resources at Symbiosis, Pune. In those days, I worked in Mumbai and travelled to Pune for my classes every weekend. However, after the course and all this effort, I still could not find myself a job in human resources.

I then chose to take a sabbatical from work and ended up taking a two-year-long break, wherein I travelled the world. My family were supportive of my decision and believed in me. I travelled, all over South East Asia, Europe, France and Italy. It was sheer happiness to travel the world after saving for so long and many years of hard work. During this time, I also took up various quick courses in human resources to equip myself for the way forward in my career. One of these courses landed me up in Extentia, and the rest, as they say, is history. Looking back, I feel marketing and human resources are both based on the same principles, and I like them both equally.”
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“I am an interesting combination of German and Spanish parents, my dad is German while my mom is Spanish. I was born in Germany and moved to the US when I was a week old. I returned to Germany when I was two and was raised in a Spanish kindergarten for two days a week and a German kindergarten for the rest of the week. I also traveled to Spain multiple times when I was younger and grew extremely fond of it.
With time I realized, how fond of Spain I was and wanted to settle down there. But there isn’t too much industry or work opportunity there, hence I had to postpone my plans. In Spain people live and work but in Germany people live to work. What I really like about Spain is its open culture, warmth of the people, their full of life outlook and cheerful lifestyle. Whereas Germany is an efficient economy with infinite job opportunities and extremely honest citizens who are always ready to help. I like Germany but I admire Spain and identify with its culture totally.
Being raised with 2 cultures made me open to new philosophies and therefore I studied in the US for a year. I loved my experience there and this might have led me to want to explore further and I came to India. I was fascinated with India for a long time and got the opportunity to travel here for my internship, experience the bright culture, spicy food and welcoming people. I think my time in India has really expanded my worldview and I will definitely visit again. Though I am travelling to Chile to study further, I am eager to travel to Australia as well to experience its culture, its beauty and its heritage.”
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“Sometimes being a brother is even better than being a superhero” – Mark Brown.

“My older brother has been my biggest inspiration, best critic, greatest motivator and prime mentor. In grade 11, he pushed me to take up software development as a career. With a deep interest in Economics and ideas to create social changes, I was not at all interested in coding and the thought of taking it up was sheer boring. But over time as I read about development, its importance and power, I got keenly interested and decided to give it a shot.

4 years later after graduating in Economics I took a 3-month Web Development course and moved to New York, where I stayed with my brother. I have to admit, it was and will be one of the best experiences of my life, having taught me a whole heap.

I love development now and keep exploring the ideas of how it could help me give back to society. Probably economics would have helped me do the same over a longer time frame but this has given me the power to make a change right here, right now. I owe this one to my brother, totally. (Smiles)”
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“Coming from a family of university toppers, failing my first year engineering came as quite a shock to all. College was far, felt alienated, and eventually lost interest.
My brother then invited me to visit him in the States. He would work all day, so he would give me $10 and drop me off at malls. I would browse shops and analyse the business aspect behind every store. One day, I walked into an accessories store Claire’s, which had an offer of buying 10items for $2. I then realised that India didn't have an all-accessory store (back then). That’s when ‘Claire’s Trinklets’ happened to me.
When I came back to India, I had $200 worth of accessories. Using the craigslist concept, I started taking pictures of all my bought accessories, showcased them on a Facebook page with an intention to sell. And I sold!
So that is how I spent my lost year. By the end of my engineering, I was quite deep into this new venture and a friend helped me put up a website for ‘Claires Trinklets’.
I eventually secured a first class, shocking everyone (smiles). At the same time, my little business picked up quite well. I discovered Korean vendors to supply me goods, and so far I have over 8000 transactions.
I am extremely passionate about this hobby and I take care of all business details by myself.
I am the only girl child in the family and they are now extremely proud of their daughter who has a job with entrepreneurial skills. My father always kept me motivated with a Shah Rukh Khan dialog -- Jo kuch nahi karte, woh kamaal karte hain.”
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iXtentia

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"I was not a class topper nor a brilliant student in school. My grades were average and I was one of the naughtiest students in the class. My teachers always had complaints about me and named me as ‘Headache’. Like other children of my age, I never imagined of becoming a doctor or an engineer or even thought about the future. Slowly I started to enjoy troubling people around me and it turned into a habit and hobby. My parents suffered a lot because of my behavior and never heard anything good about me all through my school days.

After high school, when it was time for me to choose my career path, my parents wanted me take up medicine or nursing. I am the kind of person who cannot withstand an injection. So I told my parents, that I wanted to take up engineering to avoid studying medicine. Engineering was more difficult than I anticipated as I had to actually study there. It was my choice, so I had to continue with it. I adjusted but with partners in crime, a naughty set of friends. Sometimes teachers made me sit on the first bench so that I don’t disturb the class from some other corner. I completed engineering and bagged a job in Quality Assurance which did not interest me at first. I slowly become an expert and started enjoying it. I realized that it completely suited my troublesome personality.

However, I managed to make a successful career in QA and was overwhelmed when my college invited me to take a motivational session for the current batch of students. I was ecstatic and felt overwhelmed about my journey from being a worst student to a successful professional. I could change to this extent because my teachers, lecturers and parents tolerated my naughtiness and gave me a chance each time I made a mistake. All the punishments they gave me turned out to be stepping stones to my success. I, now strongly believe, that a child should be taught to be a human being rather than being a top student. Children should be taught to love people without expectations, to be kind to the needy and be given the choice to take decisions that make them happy."
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"As a teenager, I deliberated what I wanted as a career. I was pursuing a BBA Marketing degree at that point and was wondering what I would do in the future. My closest friend and confidante was my sister. She supported me, motivated me, helped me figure out what I really wanted to do and encouraged me to give it my best. She taught me to set a goal, work towards it, achieve it and learn in the process.
To start with, I joined a BPO, wherein I had to serve annoyed customers, calm them down and sell other products all in a 6-minute call. I did this flawlessly and was soon considered as the fresh talent in my company. Out of 16 different processes in my company, sales interested me the most. It is here I realized, that I was really good at talking to people, convincing them and selling to them. It dawned on me that this was the skill I wanted to hone and sales was the career I wanted to take up.
With an experience in customer retention, sales and customer management, I joined an HR consulting firm and took up recruitment. This not only gave me a chance to interact with people but also help them feel good about their skillsets, consult them regarding their career and persuade them to embrace new opportunities in spite of hesitations. While I brought out the best in people, I saw my company growing from a consulting firm to becoming a part of an MNC.
It was here that I worked on the build, operate, transfer model and learned about product selling, the infinite opportunities it had and dynamism of building a product to delivering it successfully. I realized that this was what I wanted to do next and this brought me to Extentia. Product selling is a continuous learning process that involves interacting with prospects, convincing them and making a sale. It is about being confident about your company, the product and conveying that confidence to the customer."
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"I was born in India, but brought up in Kuwait. Kuwait has beautiful beaches, outdoor locations, green landscapes and a huge desert. All my childhood, I enjoyed playing outdoor games and cycling through long and empty landscapes, in spite of an extremely hot climate. This influenced me greatly and I realized a deep inclination to nature, travelling, road trips, trekking and open-air activities. I also traveled to Iran and Iraq. Whilst Iraq was a religious trip, I enjoyed roaming around Iran as it is a beautiful country full of mountains, greenery, snow in winters with a good infrastructure and friendly people. Being so close to Dubai, I could not visit it then, but I wish to tour there to see the Burj Khalifa, the undersea aquarium and the desert safari.
When I returned to India in my teens, I had a huge list of places to discover (smiles) and slowly realized that it is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. I explored Pondicherry and loved its beaches, foliage, relaxed culture, delicious French food, silent streets and Tamil speaking welcoming people. I also visited Delhi, Agra, Shimla, Gujarat and Rajasthan. While Delhi was very commercialized, Agra was beautiful with its cultural heritage, historic monuments and the Taj Mahal. Gujarat was a nice and short stay and I would like to visit it again. Kufri in Shimla was incredibly stunning as the entire village is situated on the edge of a snowcapped mountain. Mount Abu and Udaipur in Rajasthan were exquisite and someday I want to traverse the deserts in Rajasthan. I am also keen to take a trip to Darjeeling and Kerala to experience the magnificent locales, simple values and diverse food.
Yet, it’s my dream to travel to Leh Ladakh and take on the Chadar Frozen River Trek over the Zanskar river in the winters. It is a breathtaking, 15 day trek over 75kms of the frozen Zanskar river in Leh. After India, I wish to travel Europe to experience its attractive locations and wonderful work culture. However, much as I travel to any part of the world, my heart will be where home is and that is India."
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“When people start getting to know me, they seem to find it strange that I love jungles. Surprised? Yes! The thrill and adventure in a jungle just amazes me and fascinates me to travel there every time I plan a vacation. I realized my inclination towards wildlife, nature and forests at the age of 16. It was the summer vacations after grade 10 and I was looking for something to keep me busy. It was then that my friend and I took up a trip to the Koyna Wildlife Sanctuary with Insearch Outdoors.

Being my first trip to a sanctuary, it was a breathtaking experience and the beginning of my affinity towards wildlife, bird-watching and jungle exploration. One of the most thrilling and unforgettable sights was a rare meteor shower. Hundreds of fireballs rushing through the sky at incredible speeds. Another highlight of this trip was going on the midnight jungle trail (we were warned against it) but the experience of watching black panthers in the dark, was absolutely spellbinding.

We joined the travel group and left for a scary yet adventurous trip to the famous Mudumalai National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary. Enthusiastic to spot a tiger, we ended up finding a leopard on a tree. Gathering some courage, we slowly moved towards it, but to our amazement it ran away from us and we were running behind it (laughs). We moved ahead from this hilarious moment only to find a herd of 200 elephants blocking our way. After waiting for 2 hours for them to clear the road, we were gasping for breath and running away, being chased by some elephants (laughs).

These mesmerizing experiences not only stimulate my desire to pursue jungle exploration but also inspire me to work towards jungle restoration and wildlife preservation. I worked with the Koyna Action Group to provide food, clothing and medication to the local tribes of the jungle. I look forward to do more work in this space and given a chance, I will look at restoring natural habitats for animals wherever free land is available on the city outskirts.

My next vacation will be to the Sundarbans to experience man-eater tigers and to the Kaziranga National Park to discover one-horn rhinoceros. The smell, beauty, divinity, serenity of these natural surroundings just enthrall me and I feel like I am a part of nature and the woods.”
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“I hail from a small town in South India where Tamil is widely spoken, being the mother tongue. I grew up there, with my early schooling in an English medium school, where teachers spoke with a heavy mother tongue influence. Till grade 12, my communication was weak and it didn’t even matter in my home town.
During my graduation, I interned with an event management company and it was at one of the events that realized, how vital good English communication was. I had organized this event and was observing a group of people brainstorm to come up with business ideas. There was a guy who spoke really well and captured the audience’s attention. He had impeccable English but mediocre content. It was then, that I realized how important it was to speak fluent English to be an effective communicator.
At the age of 19, it was a huge task to work on my communication, unlearn what I had learnt and relearn correct language. I started reading plenty of books, sometimes sat with the dictionary throughout (smiles). I watched several English movies, which were difficult for me to comprehend in the beginning, but with time I caught on the pronunciation and diction. I consciously spoke in English with everyone around me, took feedback and improved.
Now, I am a freelance soft skills trainer, who provides workshops on public speaking and corporate communications on weekends (laughs). Learning to communicate well, helped me understand different perspectives that people have, to articulate them, relate to them better and bring out the best in them. I leveraged this in my job as a Business Analyst, to add value to conversations, lead projects and communicate with clients’ stakeholders. English is a deep and vast language wherein I have heaps to learn and miles to go before I sleep (smiles)”.
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"As a kid, I was silent, reclusive and unsocial. I could communicate well but never initiated a conversation. However, during my BCS final year viva, my professor pointed out that I should take up something other than programming, although I was doing well. It made me think about what I really wanted to do as I did not want to opt for MCS like my friends would. After much deliberation, I decided to change my career path and do an MBA. But the only limitation was my introvert nature, so I challenged myself to come out of my cocoon and took up business development as a career path.
I started taking part in group discussions, role plays, extempore speech competitions and presentations. I made presentations a way of communication during MBA and would look for a chance to present to batch-mates and professors. I attended training sessions by a consulting firm where they put you into an uncomfortable position, so as to push you to speak among people. This taught me objection handling of questions from unknown people and how to engage into long conversations. I was motivated to take the initiative to start conversations without an agenda as this was a vital skill for my work. It is then that I started imagining a situation, wherein if I was stuck in an elevator with an unknown person or people, then how would I initiate a conversation, mingle or network with them. I started talking to friends without a specific agenda to see how random conversations could shape up.
Today this helps me the most in my job to strike conversations, network and drive discussions ahead with unknown clients. When I look back, I’ve learned a lot, had some great experiences with a constant scope for improvement. Not blessed with the gift of the gab, I like the way I have shaped up, in terms of speaking well with self-confidence."
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Introduction

iXtentia is a division of Extentia that develops applications for Apple, Android, Windows Phone, and other mobile platforms. It also offers consulting for mobile strategy and marketing. Several iXtentia applications for the iPhone /iPad are listed among the top 200 on the App Store.