During the endless war in Lebanon, Mashkur Sarwar’s family escaped and began again in New York. This Arab immigrant then flourished in his education by completing his early schooling here before moving on to pursue a Bachelor of Commerce at prestigious New York University. Afterward, he rose through the ranks as an acclaimed Senior Web Developer. In the beginning of the millennium, Mashkur began to take notice of and become fascinated by the innovative technology known as “the internet.” As a result, he enrolled in two web development courses and successfully completed Harvard’s CS50 program. This academic achievement certified him as an expert in both web design and mobile development.
After a decade of experience as a Senior Web Developer for some of the most respected companies in the industry, Mashkur took his expertise and founded MS-WEB. With the advent of WEB3.0, he has been bestowed with unfettered authority to curate his clientele. He is devoted to guaranteeing that all customers are adequately catered for in New York’s brisk tech business environment. His specialties comprise responsive web design, full-stack coding, and project administration.
Whether it’s a museum, hotel, or any other structure, the grandeur of historical buildings never fails to leave Mashkur Sarwar in awe. To him, there is no greater satisfaction than being able to explore different cultures while still managing his work from the peaceful confines of his hotel room. As he travels across various locations around the world, he continues to be productive with whatever project has called upon him during this sojourn.
Beyond being tech-savvy, Mashkur has a strong commitment to giving back to the city he was born in. When his wealth increased, he made generous donations to organizations that aim to benefit those who are less fortunate and improve their quality of life in Lebanon. He also established a vocational institute for people living in Beirut. Additionally, Mashkur cherishes traveling around the world with his family and every moment spent together.
Where did the idea for your career come from?
After working as a Senior Web Developer for 10 years, I decided to fly solo and started MS-WEB, my web development agency. My unique selling point is the reduction in development-launch friction. I wanted to develop games in one week contrary to six weeks while conserving performance, sustainability, and user experience. And for that, I decided to launch my own agency.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I am a man by the clock. I wake up sharp at 6 am. After jogging and going to the gym, I have my breakfast at 7:30 am and I leave for the office at 8 am. My day in the office is usually packed with meetings and discussions and I shut everything at 6 pm sharp. I don’t bring work with me home. My time at home is purely for my family and friends. I love cooking so I usually make dinner most of the time. 10 pm sharp is my bedtime.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I sit down alone, ponder over my ideas, write them down, analyze and evaluate them from all possible angles, chalk out a rough draft, and the next morning put it in front of my team to brainstorm. After hours of discussion, we reach an implementable and practical design that can be brought to life.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Digitization of almost everything. The power of the internet has come into play in its true spirit and it’s amazing. Fintech has completely revolutionized the business space and great things are yet to come.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Punctuality. I value time more than anything and that’s why time values me. It not only increases my productivity but also makes me more organized and systematic.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Never fear taking a risk. The more you are fearless about taking a challenge, the greater ability you have to cross that gap out in the field.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Failure is a bigger success than success itself. Let me explain. When you lose you evaluate your journey way better and in more detail to figure out what and where things went wrong. When you succeed you hardly give a second thought to your mistakes. You miss the opportunity to learn and grow when you succeed and that’s why I consider it a less valuable thing than failure. Failure opens the door for learning provided you embrace it with a growth mindset.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Read and learn! Never stop learning new things. Every day there’s something you need to learn and you meet someone who knows more than you and is doing better than you are doing. Growth and learning are hands in hand. I still consider myself a student of this ever-growing tech world. You start losing when you start believing that you don’t need to learn anything anymore.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I hardly focus on strategies to grow my business because for me this agency is not a money-making business. It’s my passion and money comes along. I pay all my attention to delivering the highest quality work that follows best practices. I don’t believe in offering something faster and cheaper just to target the mass audience. For me, my uniqueness is high-quality service that speaks for itself. My customers are those who are happy to pay more if they are offered a premium service and quality product. I try my best to be that premium option that is always in high demand.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
An entrepreneurial journey is full of ups and downs for everyone and I’m no exception. Since I had no business management background, initially I had to struggle to manage things but a good team is key to success. Today I have a great team that adds value to my vision and I am proud of them.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Invest in e-commerce. E-commerce is one of the fastest-growing sectors today and it is undoubtedly an alluring option for potential investors. If you want to do something big and have expertise in marketing and business management, e-commerce is a safe, low-cost, and profitable investment option.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I bought earbuds worth $100 from a small startup last week. And they are worth the price. I love listening to music and the sound quality of the earbuds is quite amazing.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
Google Doc. I just love this app! It makes my day-to-day professional life so much easier. I make notes in it, I share my ideas with my team, and I write my things to do in it. It enhances my productivity. From my rough ideas to meeting minutes, everything is on my Google Doc.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie is an amazing book I would recommend everyone to read. I read it a long time ago and still remember its lesson that influences my business to date.
What is your favorite quote?
Live and let live!
Read and learn! Never stop learning new things.
Always pay attention to delivering the highest quality work that follows best practices and be that premium option that is always in high demand.
Never fear taking a risk.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.