Mar
11
2011

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Fellows Friday is a weekly series on the TED Blog that profiles one TED Fellow each week. We have asked the Fellows to answer our question below to share their knowledge and advice with other social entrepreneurs, innovators, and changemakers who are coming up with big ideas that can change the world.

Founder of EachOneTeachOne, Neha Gupta helps Facebook users spend their online time tutoring students in need. Neha has a history of using IT for social good, including helping develop a smart phone app that provides live video streaming during 911 calls. In the future, Neha hopes to spread the power of technology by training women from her native India in computer and job skills.

Sokunthea: There are many aspiring social entrepreneurs out there who are trying to take their passion and ideas to the next level. What is one piece of advice you would give to them based on your own experiences and successes?

Neha: It’s a tough world, especially if you are a social entrepreneur. The key point I think is to keep going in this area. In any kind of new venture, you need a lot of patience and perseverance. In that way it’s similar to doing a PhD, or even harder. With a PhD at the end of the day you at least get a degree. But in entrepreneurship you don’t know.

But in entrepreneurship, even a loss is a positive thing on your resume. Trying is better than having not tried. I’ve worked with a start-up in the Bay area, and the general theme is that even if you tried to start a company and you fail, everyone knows that a lot of luck is involved. So even if you fail, it doesn’t matter than much. You took the initiative, you have potential. Failure is not bad, since starting a company is such a big endeavor.

Read the rest of Neha Gupta's Fellows Friday interview here.

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