Miki Agrawal ’01 – Things Required To Make A Business Run
Miki Agrawal is half Japanese, half Indian, she has an an identical twin sister named Radha and also a third sister, Yuri, who is less than one year older than them. Miki is French Canadian by birth (grew up in Montreal until she was 18 years old), she speaks 5 languages (fluent in English and French, very proficient in Japanese, and proficient in Hindi and Spanish).
Miki played soccer semi-professionally for the NY Magic post college, started out as an investment banker upon graduation (Deutsche Bank), then left to work as a commercial/music video/film production coordinator/manager for three years after that.
Her entrepreneurial spirit then kicked in and at 25 years old, she decided to start the process of building the Slice concept. At 26, she opened Slice.
Here she reflects in an eClips interview ** about how many little things are required to make a business run.
“At the very beginning, it was just silly little things like placement of plates and forks and knives and timing, getting pizza out the door properly, getting delivery guys to know what they were doing. These are just real practical things that you just never think about. So, when someone comes and places an order, the plates have to be right there. You have to grab things. We had them over there so it was an extra thirty seconds to get there and those thirty seconds all added up. So those are all just little adjustments that you just have no expectation of it. You know, things to buy. You forgot to buy the rubber mat to stand on, but your knees were hurting. Shoot, I have to go get a rubber mat. So these are all just little things that you can’t even…it’s just one of those things that you just have to do it and figure it out. It’s so hard to say one thing. Hiring was really hard, finding the right staff. Do I hire somebody with no experience, but has a lot of passion for food? Do I somebody with a lot of experience, but they want a bigger salary, but I’m just starting up so I can’t pay that? There are so many things that you have to think about. I have this amazing idea. I brought these great people together. We raised the money. We built the place up. That was hard. Now, extra hard stuff comes along. Marketing – out of the thousands of restaurants in New York City, how do you separate yourself? Out of the thousands of pizzerias, how do you separate yourself? It’s just timing. The pizza business is a timing business. It is so time sensitive. It’s out the door right away. We originally didn’t time ourselves. The pizzas were coming out and they would be closed in a box. The delivery guys would then take it. The timing wasn’t right so it would take an extra five minutes to get it packaged. It’s these little things that you just can’t foresee, that four years later, we are a lot more seasoned in how timing works and all the little things that we need, where the checks go and you know!“
– Miki Agrawal ’01
Founder Slice, Inc
** For now you still need to log into eClips with your net id and password before clicking the above link.