After Hours with Srikant Iyer, CEO and Co-founder, HomeLane
1. The job: One chooses a vocation based on many reasons. For me, it is the challenge of doing something different every day that gets me going. I like the start-up culture; there is much enthusiasm, and a sort of organised chaos that is beyond anything mundane. For me, it is a big high to create teams and build platforms that cut through the clutter and make everything simpler.
It is also one of the reasons why I decided to venture into the home décor business. When I looked at how people go about designing their homes, I realised there were several visible pain points and a complete lack of predictability in terms of quality, timeliness and warranty on products. Everyone knew it, yet everyone went ahead with this broken process. This acceptance of ‘status quo’ is something that I love challenging; I enjoy fixing broken processes by using upcoming technology. The 3D visualisation tool ‘Kaleido’ that we recently launched is the perfect example of this.
Having said all this, I can’t imagine hating anything about the job. Except perhaps the waiting period. I am a perfectionist, and at times getting traditional manufacturers to understand our brand ethos and deliver according to our standards gets hard. I know it is inevitable, but that delay can sometimes irk me a bit.
2. The weekdays: On a work day I am up early, and on my phone checking for mails instantly. I live life on an electronic leash. I confess to being an e-mail addict but that is a given with my profession. I don’t normally count the hours I work, but it can get long. The things I look forward to would be the twice-a-week meetings with my team. I love interacting and mentoring new blood and the process of creating a team that is better than I am. Again, if there is anything that gets my goat it would have to be delays. I do not like lack of communication, and I do my utmost to ensure our customers never have to face unexplained delays.
3. The weekend: I may have some interviews or meetings with B2B prospects scheduled over the weekend. The rest of the time is devoted to my family, which includes two sons. I have a pact with my younger son to take him to his music classes, I love doing movie outings with my kids. One ritual I never miss out on is the Sunday morning breakfast with my mother at MTR.
4. The toys: I am always on my phone; don’t think I can do without it! I also cannot think of replacing my trusty MacBook with anything else. I do like cars and I like to think I am not crazy about them, but I am sure my family would say otherwise.
5. The logos: Apple, for sure. I admire their design aesthetics and the cleanliness and simplicity of their products. Amazon, for the sheer variety of their products and the complete user experience they offer. I shop a lot too, and I have a huge collection of formal and informal shirts. They are my one weakness. In India, I shop from brands like Arrow. When abroad, I make sure I return back home with my bags full of my favourite brand – Massino Dutti.
—As told to Banasree Purkayastha