Disrupting Business Complexity with Pravina Pindoria
Pravina Pindoria is bringing simplicity and collaboration to business with Tallyfy. She shared with us why she and Amit Kothari, her co-founder in and husband, would move a company from London to St. Louis, how they help businesses eliminate complexity, and what she thinks we can all gain.
What does Tallyfy do?
We simplify and digitize complex and static processes. We make them easier to follow and track so energy and resources can be freed up and work can be done easily.
What kind of clients do you help?
Companies that are looking to scale, but struggling to think about how to go about it, growing businesses that are facing more complexity. We hear from clients that the processes we have the most impact on are those done by distributed teams like IT, operations, sales and HR.
We make it simpler to ensure things are done efficiently and consistently, while making it possible to change the processes quickly when needed.
You and Amit are immigrants. How has it impacted who you are today?
My family came from Western India. My grandfather was a farmer and was recruited to move to East Africa to help build and maintain railroads.
When Idi Amin came to power, they ended up in London with my father, where I ended up growing up in a fairly traditional British-Asian values kind of family. Keeping a steady job, caring for children, hard work—that all grounded me really from birth.
Tell us about the picture you sent for use with this story— what’s interesting to you about it?
This is Amit and I standing outside Venture Cafe. I love the diversity of people it attracts; startups, small business owners and smart people curious about innovation in St. Louis.
Beyond education and training, what prepared you for what you’re doing now?
I worked as a pediatric nurse in London, went abroad to do research and helped launch hospitals. I became very influenced by the struggles of well-meaning people in institutions trying to get work done and how difficult that can be.
When have you failed and what did you learn?
Amit and I first tried to launch a customized newspaper business based on our experience with our wedding, where our families invited far more people than we knew. We had the idea to create a customized newspaper with poems, pictures, recipes and stories contributed by others so people would know us.
It seemed valuable to our guests and we thought it could also be a business. Unfortunately, we didn’t do the research to figure out if we could profitably deliver the product.
We learned a lot through it, though—new skills, how to prioritize, how to work together.
Where can people find you?
We office in T-REX, which is fabulous. One or two days a week, I work from home so Amit and I can work separately on our various areas and not distract each other.
Outside of work, I find peace running in Francis Park, near where we live in St. Louis Hills.
Favorite guilty pleasure?
We love watching Star Trek Voyager online. We don’t have a TV, never have.
Captain Janeway is my hero. Before that it was Frasier, and I cried when it ended; the characters felt like friends we’d gotten to know.
Amit and I give ourselves an hour a day to switch off, we commit to a series until we’re done with it.
What keeps you up at night?
Wishing [we] could deliver something for a customer that [we] don’t have the resources for. Some need more from us in terms of staff, time and specialized expertise than we can deliver right now as a startup.
What current problem would you like to solve?
I always had ideas on how to improve things in organizations I’d worked in, and there was rarely a culture that let solutions come up from the ground. I would like to empower everyone from the ground level up to improve the work people do and getting decision-makers to buy-in.
Getting innovation from the field to really make a difference.
When do you live by routines? What are those routines?
My morning routine is having a warm glass of water with lemon in it. It boosts your metabolism and immune system, it also detoxes you.
Then I do yoga, stretch my eyes by looking outside to see as far as I can see. I stretch my eyes and stretch my body before I get behind the laptop for the day.
Who else’s work do you admire and why?
My father, because he was really disciplined. He was uprooted from school when he was young because of the upheaval in Uganda.
He was really bright and sacrificed what he wanted to be to support the family as a carpenter and builder. Also people like Ben Burke and Ginger Imster (of Arch Grants) put their passion into making St. Louis a place better for everybody.
And, any person who has taken a brave move to leave the security of a job to start something they truly care about.
How can people follow you?
We’re @Tallyfy on Twitter.