An exciting journey of how Paras Makhija, 22, an artist, a graphic designer, and an entrepreneur, went from starting his enterprise to taking admission into IIM Rohtak. "Success is no accident; it is hard work, perseverance, learning, sacrifice, and, most of all, love towards what you are doing. And in the end, hard work and perseverance pay off," is the motto of my life, says Paras.
Paras started his Art Start-up, Makeyourtoons, in the final year of his graduation. He was always inclined towards becoming an entrepreneur. He says, "Back in my graduation, I saw everyone around me preparing for CAT, without having a clear vision about what they wish to do. I was against them. I believed that a person must do something that makes him/her proud and happy, rather than going with the herd mentality. I was always inclined towards becoming an entrepreneur, and art always inspired me. I decided to try art as a business." He made commissioned artworks, cartoons, and caricatures, based on the client's requirements.
After getting an internship offer from IIT Gandhinagar as a 'Trainee in External Relations,' he had to decide whether to accept the offer or continue growing his start-up. "After a lot of thinking, believing in myself, I decided to do what my heart said. I declined the internship offer and continued with my business. This decision came with a condition. I was asked to prepare for CAT by my parents. I accepted the terms and prepared for CAT along with making and selling art. My work was going pretty well, but somewhere I knew something was missing, and that was the system of how a business should be carried out."
After spending a month preparing for CAT, he managed to perform well in the exam. He started working again on his start-up as soon as the exam was over.
He adds, "During that time, I used to make around three caricatures per day along with providing printing services. Some of my work also got appreciated by celebrities like Shahid Kapoor, Hazel Keech, Priya Malik, RJ Vashishth, and Rakesh Tiwari. I also got a job offer from Jio Saavan for character designing for podcasts. But my entire concept was to start my own independent business and chase my dreams, not get into a job and work for someone else's dreams. We successfully organized three exhibitions and were lucky enough to manage stalls in 2 college fests."
Paras managed to be among the top 4 percentile students and got interview calls from various new and baby IIMs. He converted only IIM Rohtak among the second generation IIMs, along with a few third-generation IIMs. "We had managed to cross 100+ customers in early 2020. Everything was better than before. But I had to choose between continuing to grow my business or grabbing the opportunity in hand." He adds.
After a lot of thinking and consulting with experts, Paras decided to take admission in the PGP batch of 2022 in IIM Rohtak, with a clear vision of starting his own company right after the program. "The majority of students join an MBA program to get a fair placement offer. I joined an MBA to learn about the essentials to start, run, and maintain a business, the problems companies generally face, and how they overcome it." He adds.
Paras is optimistic about his future and believes that the opportunities provided by studying in an institute like IIM Rohtak will help him lead the path he always wanted to. "I am sure that the decision to take admission to IIM Rohtak will be one of the decisions which I'll cherish in life," he said. "My decision to take admission at IIM Rohtak has been promising so far, I have met some great people, made a lot of amazing friends, and learned a lot in this short span, and I am sure that the journey ahead will be cherishable."