Exeleon Magazine

Art Shaikh: Creating a Moment of Forever

Art Shaikh CircleIt Exeleon Magazine

Innovation and technology have, in a broad sense, united and in a lot of ways divided people with its advancements. However, Art Shaikh chose to leverage the power of innovation and technology to bring families closer, redefine relationships, and preserve legacy.

CircleIt® is a Generational Platform that allows you to chat, build your family tree, and send cards to your loved ones for free. The technology enables you to send messages into the future and thereby build a family tree.

Art Shaikh is an innovative entrepreneur in every right, and through this interview he shares about his journey, the world of technology, and much more.

What according to you makes one an innovative leader? How do you integrate the same thought into your leadership?

Innovation in leadership, to me, is characterized by the ability to pivot changing conditions, following through on commitments, and helping the team to unlock their hidden potential. These are core ideas of how I have built CircleIt.

As a tech startup, change is constant and inevitable. Being nimble and helping the team to be nimble is something that has given us the ability to keep ourselves moving forward despite the sharp changes in the market conditions.

Brief us about your growing up years. What is your earliest memory as a entrepreneur that you can remember?

I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit. When I was a young boy growing up in Pakistan, I had an electric bike (most kids in my neighborhood did not). I started my own neighborhood taxi service, shuttling the neighborhood kids around. Eventually their parents found out and weren’t too pleased, but it was the first time I had tried to forge a business.

What prompted your interest and subsequently your foray into the tech space?

I got the opportunity to work at Salesforce, which is the Mecca of tech companies. I had worked in finance, but technology was where I always felt most at home.

One major thing I have observed is the use of data and how irresponsibly it has been managed by the bigger tech companies. This is something I seek to change. The more I learned from my career at Salesforce, the more I wanted to be ingrained in the tech culture.

Also Read: Ashok Dudhat: Connecting Businesses with Talent

Talk to us about the influence of your father and how it led to the start of CircleIt.

My father was always a forward thinker. In 2011, he gave me a box filled with handmade cards and a list of instructions. These were gifts to be delivered on his behalf once he had passed away. At that time, he was healthy, and this just seemed like a normal move for him, to be prepared for the future.

However, he passed away suddenly and unexpectedly in 2012. Since then, I have delivered countless cards on his behalf. I have, per his wishes, ensured that my mother received flowers on their anniversary.

As the Founder and CEO, what role do you play in the day-to-day proceedings of the company?

One thing I learned over the years was that many CEOs aren’t accessible to their team, and many lose sight over the day-to-day operations. Out of necessity and love of what I am building, I learned the different skills I needed prior to seeking out help. Because of that, I am able to be more than just a leader, but also assist the team and help them grow.

Looking at your journey, what would you have done differently if you were to start again?

I can’t think of anything I would do differently. There are certain things you don’t know when getting into a new venture. I may have not outsourced as much work as I did early on, but at the time, those were the options I had available to me. Everything you run into along the way is an opportunity to learn.

Also Read: Moustafa Hamwi: Where Passion Meets Leadership

What would be your advice for young and aspiring leaders in today’s tech-driven world?

The best piece of advice I can give is to gain experience first. Many times, younger people jump into the tech startup world with an idea, but no real experience. I feel that because I was in my 40’s when we started, I had more experience in the business world, which gave me more of an idea of not just the product and services we offer, but also the path I would need to take in order to get to where I want to be.

Finally, what does the future look like for CircleIt? On a personal front, where do you see yourself standing in the coming years?

The future is a lot of what we are all about. Because of our technology’s ability to send messages into the future, we are always forward thinking. In the coming months, we are releasing 3 major features for the platform, and also plan to double the size of our team.

I see us as a necessity in the lives of millions as we are the premier technology to preserve their legacies and memories. It is the private and secure alternative to social media, a place where everyone can be family.

Read Digital Version.

Visit CircleIt Website

Contact Art Shaikh on LinkedIn.

Transformational CEOs_Steve Davis_Exeleon Magazine

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