A Growth Mindset In Action: How Sunny Kaila Achieved Success As An Immigrant Entrepreneur
What you’ll learn in this Multiplier Mindset blog post:
- Success in entrepreneurship requires determination and the ability to overcome obstacles.
- A growth mindset is essential for personal and professional development: This involves embracing challenges, learning from mistakes, and continually seeking out opportunities for growth and development.
- Having a strategic approach can be helpful for entrepreneurs who want to achieve their goals and make a positive impact.
The entrepreneurial path involves enormous risk because it means taking full responsibility for your own financial security. When entrepreneurs get started, they use all the resources available to them. But what happens when the entrepreneur has very little resources? And what happens when they have other major obstacles in the way of starting their own business?
When they have a growth mindset and enough drive, they succeed no matter what. And that’s just what Sunny Kaila did.
Sunny was born on a farm in a village in India. People in his situation typically finish tenth grade and then continue working on their family farm. But Sunny made a different choice. In 1993, when he was 17 years old, he decided to come to America. And the fact that he didn’t speak English wasn’t going to stop him.
Going from a village where it was hard to get electricity, Sunny landed in Jersey City, New Jersey, right next to the Statue of Liberty. The only job he could get was pumping gas, and he did that for a year so he could start to pay his father back for the money he borrowed to get to the U.S. He then got his driver’s license and drove a cab seven days a week on 12-hour night shifts for two years. After paying his father back—and buying him a new car—Sunny decided it was time again to expand his growth mindset and further his education.
A good time to get into computers.
In January 1996, while looking into what he needed to do to get into college, Sunny was given the advice that it was a good time to get into computers. So, over the next two years, he studied both the English language and computer languages, and was then ready to transfer to the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Sunny says, “I graduated in December 2000 from NJIT with a computer engineering degree while driving a cab on weekends. I did not borrow anything that was not eligible for financial aid or student loan. So I had to make money to pay for my shared apartment and also save money for college.”
From taxi to tech.
Sunny wanted to do whatever was required to move out of taxi driving and into a technology job, and he got a systems admin role at a New York City public relations firm. He was told they didn’t have a budget to pay him, and he accepted the small salary they offered. Sunny explains, “I was just looking for that first job and opportunity.”
Eventually, the money wasn’t enough, so Sunny asked the owner of the PR firm if it would be a conflict of interest if he started doing some computer jobs over the weekend. His boss said it wouldn’t be a problem as long as Sunny didn’t do any work for another PR firm. Sunny started printing out brochures advertising his services and leaving them with receptionists in nearby offices while continuing to work at the PR firm. Business started taking off, and Sunny officially started his own company, signing his PR firm boss as a client.
Expanding what works.
Sunny was now making enough money that there was a surplus, so he used it to hire a tech, then two techs, then three techs. “And now we are 600-plus techs that are together working to make an impact in this world,” Sunny says. “And it’s really a people-focused journey.”
“And now we are a global company with global capability to deliver IT support services and IT infrastructure services to any English-speaking country in the world. What I know right now, I did not know at that time. I was just an immigrant, just that drive and hunger, that grit to just make it in America. It was, at that time, that hustle because you leave everything behind.”
Now, his son is about to go to college at the same age Sunny was when he first left India to come to the U.S.
Gaining the right tools.
“I’m in a position to make a bigger impact on people because I’m leading myself a lot better with Strategic Coach thinking and Strategic Coach tools,” Sunny says. “Strategic Coach is not only for entrepreneurship, it’s to live a good life.”
Strategic Coach founder Dan Sullivan says, “I’ve been coaching since 1974. And everything that I’ve done over the first 48 years was worth just having someone tell the story that Sunny tells.” He adds, “To be an entrepreneur is to be an immigrant. Because you’re generally leaving behind a whole way of life, where the whole notion of being an entrepreneur is strange to people.”
If you’d like to find out how The Strategic Coach Program can help you overcome your obstacles, expand your growth mindset, and achieve your entrepreneurial dreams like Sunny did, book a call with us today.