Episode #14 – Saiman Shetty – Life at Tesla, Lyft, Mistakes as a founder, Not settling for status quo.

In the latest episode, I chat with Saiman Shetty, an engineer turned product manager from the Silicon Valley, who has worked at Tesla, Lyft, and Nuro.

In his time in the US, Saiman has co-founded two startups, the first one being Hygiea, during his time at college.

Hygiea is a cool hardware/ software product that monitors garbage levels in trash cans.  You could set it up in your trash cans, and it immediately tracks and relays whether the bin is full or not, predicts how much temps is left before it needs emptying, helping enterprises manage their time and resources better.

Hygiea was a huge hit among the peers and went on to win many awards and accolades – and was one of the four winners out of the 128 startups that participated in Silicon Valley Business Competition at San Jose State University and received a one-and-a-half-year incubation offer from Plug and Play, one of the most respected incubators and investment firms in Silicon Valley which has incubated Google, PayPal, Dropbox and many other successful companies in their early stages.

Currently, Saiman is working as a technical program manager at Nuro, the robotics company that builds self-driving cars for delivering goods and is also building his second start-up called resumepuppy.com an online tool to help build resumes.

Given Saiman’s experience, this was a very thoughtful and truly wide-ranging conversation – we touch upon the mistakes he made as a founder, his experience in working at world-class companies, and how the company culture differs at these places and many more topics.

Click on any of the icons to listen to the episode in your favorite platforms including Spotify, Apple Music, and Google Play music. 

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Dive right in.


Episode guide:

05:00 – Who is Saiman? What is his story so far?

09:34 – What does a control systems engineer you?

16:30 – Why be a maverick when you can be a conformist?

21:00 – Inception of anything Hygiea

23:45 – Why pick an unconventional space like trash can management with Hygiea?

32:00 – Recipient of Einstein Visa

37:00 – Mentor, Armando Rodriguez

43:20 – What was the experience like at Tesla?

49:00 – Culture at Lyft – differences from Tesla

52:10 – What was the narrative at Lyft when taking on an incumbent like Uber?

54:30 – Difference between building a startup like Hygiea and Resume Puppy

01:05:00 – Random Deck

You can connect with Saiman in these platforms:

Be sure to check out resumepuppy.com if you have to update your CV 🙂

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