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Rajiv Talreja - Business Coach | Entrepreneur | Best Selling Author

Rajiv Talreja

Rajiv Talreja

"In the journey of entrepreneurship, resilience, continuous learning, and unwavering authenticity are not just principles; they are the very keystones of success." Rajiv Talreja

Paving the Path: A Childhood Lesson in Entrepreneurship and Coaching

I was born and raised in a Sindhi family, and my father was an 8th-grade dropout. He did not pursue formal education but ventured into starting his own business. I have vivid memories of my childhood, sitting on the floor in his retail shop where he sold video games, car stereos, and other electrical accessories. As he attended to customers, I played video games like Contra, Mario, Pac-Man, etc. Sometimes, Dad would ask me to demonstrate these games to prospective customers who walked in. He encouraged me to communicate with people at a very young age, this instilled in me a profound sense of confidence and honed my communication skills from an early age. It serves as a testament to the transformative power of seemingly simple childhood moments, shaping me into both a successful entrepreneur and a proficient business coach.

Ventures & Lessons: My Path from Entrepreneurship to Coaching 


As I approached the final phase of my college, the entrepreneurial bug bit me, and I ventured into the business world. In the same year, I started a coffee shop. Shortly after, with my wife, we founded Dreamcraft Events, a corporate events company. 


The year 2010 marked significant expansion as we delved into project management, assisting a London-based bank in onboarding call centers across India and Africa. Our responsibilities extended to addressing concerns, implementing market-based strategies, and conducting backend quality checks and operations for the bank.


In that same year, 2010, I invested in the recruitment sector. The goal was to leverage the existing infrastructure and team to build a successful recruitment business from the ground up. However, this period from 2006 to 2016 didn't bring significant financial gains. I lived a hand-to-mouth lifestyle, relying on pocket expenses from the businesses and without a stable salary for myself.


The year 2012 brought challenges as a crisis hit our lives. Both the recruitment and BPO businesses faced pressures due to a client defaulting on payments. We borrowed money and heavily invested in infrastructure, technology, and human resources for the BPO services. By December 2012, we encountered a loss of ₹70,00,000 and ₹45,00,000 in debt, leading to two years of intense personal struggle marked by toxic thoughts and frustration.   


In 2014, I embarked on a learning journey, recognizing the need to understand the intricacies of building a successful business. Over 14 months, from October 2014 to November 2015, I interviewed 300 business leaders across India, distilling their insights into patterns. This effort culminated in the publication of my book titled "Lead or Bleed" in February 2016.


The turning point came with the launch of my signature program, the Business P.A.C.E Program, in April 2016. This three-day workshop aimed at teaching entrepreneurs a management system to scale up their businesses. From there, I transitioned into offering one-on-one coaching services to MSME business owners, eventually building a coaching team. As of now, we have a 125-member team, which I believe is the largest team of full-time business coaches in the world.


In 2018, I diversified by investing in a sports team, Karnataka Warriors, comprising Kannada film stars competing in the Celebrity Badminton League. Dreamcatcher Investments, initiated in 2017, became a vehicle to invest in startups with scaling potential. Although some angel rounds faced challenges, we experienced success with an exit in the logistics business, which grew from a 20-member team to a 2000-member team.


In 2021, I exited my equity from the logistics business through Dreamcraft Investments. Subsequently, I joined Zoozle as a Director for Strategy and Business Growth. Zoozle operates as an e-commerce platform, facilitating manufacturers and wholesalers in appointing micro distributors.


Currently, I am involved in multiple endeavors, serving as a director for Zoozle, building Quantum Leap, Dreamcraft Events, and QL One, an MSME platform launched in 2023. This platform aims to provide comprehensive support and resources to micro, small, and medium enterprises. The journey from 2006 to now has been a rollercoaster of experiences, challenges, and growth, with each phase contributing to the multifaceted entrepreneur I am today.


Unveiling the Power of Lifelong Learning


One fundamental principle that has guided me throughout my journey is the commitment to being a lifelong learner. I firmly believe that the state of your business and your life, mirrors your attitude, skills, and knowledge. So, the more you invest in improving yourself—whether it’s your mindset, your skills, or your understanding—the more your business and life will naturally flourish. Lifelong learning is like the engine that propels continuous growth.


When I started my business, I had the passion, but I did not have the learning! I failed and learned from my failures, but I also needed to learn from the experiences of people who have already made it; hence, my Lead or Bleed journey, which started as a learning exercise but eventually turned into a business win!


Keys to Success and Growth

Authenticity and integrity are non-negotiable for me. These are two things that every individual should strive to inculcate in their lives.


I firmly adhere to the principle that whatever I do must be rooted in authenticity and integrity. I won’t undertake something merely for personal gain or to project a certain image. At the end of the day, I want to be able to answer to my own conscience and go to bed with a peaceful mind. When faced with decisions, I ask myself if it aligns with my values and if it allows me to sleep peacefully. If the answer is no, no matter how tempting the option might be, I choose the path that maintains my authenticity and integrity.

That’s my advice to the people out there: Be authentic and have integrity, no matter what!

To continue reading timeless literary works with powerful inspiring stories and people, check out more game changer stories.