We at Gaysi like to learn from and support innovative new ideas and ventures – be it by anyone, Lesbian, Gay, Trans, Questioning or an Ally! And one of the best ways to do that is to ask questions of the people doing exciting things in our worlds – How did they get started? Where did they learn their skills? What makes them tick? Will they give us a job? etc.etc.
Oye Happy! is a fantastic ally venture based out of Hyderabad that’s kicking things off in a big way. What do they do ? They create surprises!!! Yes, that’s right – could it get more awesome? We had a chance to sit down with their Chief Troublemaker, Parul Sharma ( fuddy duddy job titles are a thing of the past !) and talk a bit more about their work, fun and happiness.
Q – Oye Happy ! How did you come up with that name for your business? What were you drinking / thinking ?
Harsh and Varun, the founders came up with it when we needed a catchy name. A name people can remember. A name which you can scream out loud and yet it sounds good. Oye Happy seemed perfect. They may have been drinking hot chocolate when the name was coined.
Q – On your Facebook Page, you mention that you are in the happy business of organizing surprises! Tell us a bit about how you came up with the idea of selling happiness for a living ?
Oye Happy was started with 2 simple thoughts. First, people today are too busy for the very reason they stay busy for – to be happy! Second, let’s make money out of something which is genuinely fun. And so, with the idea of spreading smiles and happiness by organizing surprises, Oye Happy started in June 2009.
Q – Soooooo… How does the real work actually happen at Oye Happy? Who does what? What kinda workflow do you guys have?
If you’d like to surprise someone in the family…or a friend…or maybe someone extra special…let us know. Tell us about the person whom you’d like to surprise – for birthday, anniversary, first kiss anniversary or any other occasion at all – we’ll whip up extremely innovative and personalized ideas to take him/her by surprise. We have arranged for surprise book launches for writing enthusiasts, exclusively recorded radio shows for music lovers, a royal lunch in a private Haveli for a foodie couple and lots more. We first understand the person who is to be surprised and work out ideas exclusively for him/her. And that’s what makes us different.
Speaking of the workflow, the entire team contributes with the process of Ideation. Once an idea is selected, we execute it. Our Headless Creative and his team handle the design and content. The Chief Happiness Officer and I (Chief Troublemaker) handle the logistics and execution.
Q – Ideas! Where do you come up with different ideas for surprises for your clients? Where do you seek your daily inspiration?
Inspiration lies in the smallest of things. It can sometimes be in a Calvin & Hobbes comic strip, a half-written sentence on a piece of tissue paper, a full mug of beer, a lame video on YouTube or someone’s status update.
Q – From your latest post on FB, it looks like you have something big in the works launched at Hyderabad Airport. Tell us a bit more about this exciting new development.
Located at the Arrivals area in Hyderabad airport, Oye Happy is India’s first surprise store at the airport. We are also inclined to believe that we may be the first store-of-its-kind in the entire world. What we do is simple – the moment when someone meets his or her loved one at the airport is special in itself. We make that moment surprisingly special by helping people surprise their loved ones in unique and extraordinary ways, right at the airport. We have a whole range of customizable ideas – be it for adorable Moms, nervous finances, I-hate-to-smile fathers, grown-up toddlers or childish grand moms. What makes our surprises awesome is not just the uniqueness of the ideas, but also the fact that some of the ideas can be customized specially for the one you’ve to receive. Besides, our billing happens inside an autorickshaw which makes the shop even more awesome!
Q – What are your future plans for Oye Happy ? How BIG are you dreaming ?
There is no square feet rate to dreaming so we have really big plans. To start with, we want to be present in every major airport across the world. We are also on the verge of launching an e-commerce portal so that anyone can surprise anyone across the country, and gradually across the world.
Q – What advice would you give any budding entrepreneur or potential small business owner with an idea or secret skills?
The most difficult thing about starting a business is starting a business. Planning and advice and excel sheets can never start a business. Action can. Start with your first order, no matter how small it is, and things will begin falling into place. Also nothing can really prepare you for the goof up’s, a lot of things will definitely go wrong. Constant fire fighting shouldn’t be a reason to panic.
Q – If I wanted to get Oye Happy! to organize a surprise for a someone, How would I go about doing so and where in India do guys operate?
Until the time our e-commerce portal is launched, you can call us on 9000300534 or 9989712254 and we shall help you do something truly awesome. We can either create a gift and courier it across or use the assistance of one our freelance happiness consultants in your city to turn up at your doorstep with a surprise.
Q – Finally, Does one have to be a happy person to work at Oye Happy?
You just need to be a person. If you are a beer-drinking alien with a golden spaceship the chances will be much higher because that will be way cooler. You get extra points for being animated.