The first rule of entrepreneurship is that there is no rule, says Zomato’s Deepinder Goyal

With Zomato, we all got introduced to the world of food delivery, thanks to CEO Deepinder Goyal. Today, after 11 years, Zomato has been delivering food to customers in over 10,000 cities globally. And Deepinder still works with the same passion and vigour.

The Co-founder and CEO of Zomato, Deepinder Goyal, has always been a man on a mission. From the early days in 2008, when he began Zomato as FoodieBay with Pankaj Chaddah, Deepinder has led the startup with a single-minded focus to take it where it is today -- a unicorn with $3 billion valuation.

Before starting Zomato, Deepinder worked as a management consultant with Bain and Company in New Delhi. It was at Bain that Deepinder conceived the idea of an online restaurant information service, after seeing the demand for menu cards among his colleagues.

“I noticed people queuing up in the pantry every day, trying to look for menus to order food and that’s when the idea struck me – what if we could access these menus online,” Deepinder says.

Deepinder Goyal, Founder & CEO, Zomato

The food tech unicorn turned 11-years-old on July 10, 2019, and over the years, it has diversified itself from a restaurant aggregator to a food delivery startup. Currently, Zomato has expanded to 24 countries serving in over 10,000 cities globally.

Recently, Zomato acquired Uber's food delivery business UberEats in India in an all-stock transaction. With this acquisition, Zomato became a major player in the foodtech sector in India.

As someone who continues to inspire young founders, Deepinder also walks the talk. Below are a few of his thoughts and beliefs that are sure to inspire you.

“Everything is solvable. You have to put your mind to it.”

“Focus on building a business that solves a real problem.”

“You can’t say that If I don’t have access to capital, I can’t build a company.”

“The underlying idea of a startup is that founders should fight all the odds and get things done anyway, the government can play only a catalyst in getting people to that point. All the hard work has to be done by the founders.”

“Value your gut - when your gut feels like something is wrong, think hard about it, and don’t let data take over that decision.”

Do not think about money and raising funds upfront, but create a valuable product.

Have a learning mindset. The three hardest words in the world are: “I don’t know.” Don’t be afraid to say them in front of people, and work hard to learn and get better.”

 “The first rule of entrepreneurship is that there is no rule.

Execution is extremely under-rated. All the big things (strategy) are a sum total of small things (execution).”

Hire good people. If you get good people, you don’t have to manage them. Hiring good people is not easy though. But once we recognise we have hired the wrong person, we let them go promptly.”

“Don’t put processes around problem-solving - take as long as it takes to get to the right answer. And once you get to the answer, give it everything to get it done.”

Be nice and fair to people. There is nothing to be gained by not being nice to people, but it creates negative energy in the company.”

“It is important to have a co-founder. If I were alone, I would have shut Zomato a long time ago.”

It is important for co-founders to agree that when they disagree, one person will prevail. Pankaj and I have agreed that I’ll have the last word when we disagree.”

(Edited by Suman Singh)