Nishant Malhotra: The Middle Road Fuses Media With Edtech To Promote And Educate Thought Leadership

January 3, 2023

The middle Road fuses Media with EdTech to promote and educate thought leadership, upskilling, and knowledge management within the social impact sector.

The company focuses on the international development and financial services sector. The startup has Publications, Online Learning (Online Courses), Podcasts, and YouTube section.

The platform has insightful and comprehensive publications, posts, deep-dive online courses, and podcasts on topics on sustainable finance, finance, economics, development economics, statistics, impact evaluation, valuation, and much more.

The mission of the startup is to disseminate affordable quality higher education for bettering humanity. The vision is to become the largest platform within its work.

Site address www.themiddleroad.org. Introduction Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lTkjxLqxjM&t=2s.

Tell us about yourself?

I am an award-winning social entrepreneur winning the Indian Achiever’s Award 2021 from the Indian Achiever’s Forum for my contribution to the social impact sector.

Before my present avatar, I wore many hats and worked extensively in the financial services sector – worked across industries significantly in the asset management sector (private banking).

Multifaceted and well-educated, I have a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and an MBA from China Europe International Business School, Shanghai, China, and Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Pune, India.

A prolific social enabler and a fitness enthusiast, I love to catalyze continuous social change within the global arena through my startup.

After my master’s degree in public administration, I was looking forward to building a company – a world leader in promoting and educating Millennials and Gen Z on themes within the social impact sector.

Innovative and artistic, it would fuse Media with EdTech for bettering humanity through affordable quality higher education. I am passionate and best equipped to deliver measurable impact by integrating various actors within the international development sector.

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

I would have started the paid version much sooner. My startup was free for a couple of years before moving into a subscription and paid stand-alone courses.

I would have started the B2B outreach much sooner, however, I had problems recruiting third-party developers for website development.

I am involved with all aspects of my startup, significantly, building all the material and content, researching, writing, and delivering online courses and publications. It would have been judicious if I had done more to learn on web development technologies, example php.

What problem does your business solve?

My startup delivers scholarly online learning content using multifaceted, multidimensional but minimalistic techniques to an audience focusing on social impact, especially the sustainable development sector.

The startup aspires to direct world-class higher education and informative content through media (e-publications, podcasts, videos, etc.) and online academic learning/ e-learning modules.

The thought leader startup brings a fresh perspective in disseminating knowledge and skill-building among its core audience (Millennials, Gen Z, Social Enablers, Undergraduate and Post Graduate students) through a creative blend of best pedagogical practices.

The company artistically fuses media and e-learning for educational purposes using online tutorials across diverse topics fusing learning experiences through storyline documentaries, for example, the video on the genesis of the Capital Asset Pricing Model YouTube. (www.youtube.com/watch)

Interviews and in-depth conversations with leading social enablers enhance the understanding of the pedagogical approach to education.

All the content posted on The middle Road site complements comprehensive instructional videos across topics ranging from finance & economics, impact evaluation, sustainable finance, statistics, and much more.

The venture envisions empowering a community of global enablers equipping them with fundamental and critical thinking knowledge for academic and career development.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

During my spiritual sabbatical, I traveled around and a couple of countries abroad. This experience had a transformational experience on me, kickstarting the idea of integrating a platform for Millennials, Gen Z, and Social Change Enablers for a better tomorrow.

A startup with a blend of education and media with a significant focus on the social impact sector.

I felt there was no venture catering to the younger generation synergizing a wide range of themes governing issues facing the world complemented with technical skills sets for pursuing careers within the social impact sector.

The overarching aim of the venture is to build a community of enablers globally and equip the audience with academic know-how through various facets of learning with a focus on disseminating equitable education.

The platform is a revolutionary idea in furthering causes, especially within the sustainable development sector.

The startup caters to different customer segments – B2B, B2C, and B2G, envisioning to offer services as a full-fledged single-stop platform integrating and delivering solutions to all actors within the social & development ecosystem.

What is your magic sauce?

The startup offers quality content at affordable prices.

The venture believes in a multifaceted approach for promoting and disseminating knowledge and skill-building through scholarly, well-researched publications, deep-dive discussions with leading social change enablers, subject matter experts, social and business leaders to share perspectives on their work.

The company works on a network effect by inviting leading social enablers based on key holistic performance indicators designed to drive network effect among the guests facilitating credibility, personality, and leadership status globally.

The startup offers educational videos and modules tailored across specific topics to educate the audience on skill sets required to work effectively in their job.

Motivated by the seventeen sustainable development goals, The middle Road promotes work, thought leadership, and activism linked to SDGs through an online community.

For a well-rounded approach, the venture offers consulting, advisory, and training to its audience.

The platform brings a young and refreshing approach to address some of the most pressing problems facing humanity, for a more equitable tomorrow.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

I want to expand my company overseas across continents with a key focus on America and Europe.

My strategy is to be part of a leading global accelerator program, get funded, and have excellent mentors to guide the pathway of my venture ahead.

My vision is to build the largest platform on the themes encompassing the mission of my company.

Recruit talent globally, reinvent the platform using cutting-edge technology with a renewed focus on setting up material across publications, podcasts and online courses.

Invest in buying media equipment and nuturing talent to expand into the B2B and B2G segment. To complement my startup, I will open a non profit that focuses on social impact consulting.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

My biggest challenge has been to find an expert third-party web development agency specializing in web development and digital marketing due to a limited budget.

However, my startup has a global audience.

To be more effective, I am focusing on the B2B segment setting up collaborations through co-work and academic institutes.

I am adding more features example educational webinars, in-person training sessions to add more for my customers. Plans to tie up with international players for podcasts and governments for the effective roll out of my startups are on the anvil.

How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

I do the outreach myself. I reach out to educational institutions, and coworking spaces globally and take free sessions on topics related to my startup. I interact with academic institutions for feedback on my startup esp. online courses.

For example, at Vellore Institute of Technology, India a leading technology institute in India wherein I judged an event for the center of social entrepreneurship and development club.

I am building online training sessions and have taken educational webinars with Atal Innovation Mission, Niti Aayog, India to build, and showcase experience to a global audience.

These training sessions cement my startup as a thought leader and subject matter expert to incorporate B2B collaborations.

I regularly invite leading social change makers for thoughtful conversations on The middle Road podcast channel.

I build content lucidly with real-time examples to share an instructional approach to topics covered.

I focus on artistic acumen to drive creativity to promote and disseminate knowledge for online learning experience.

Publications and podcasts complement the online learning component of my company’s offering.

As a one-person company, I am building my image as an influencer. Integrating all actors within the social impact ecosystem, building global collaborations and a community of enablers backed by high-quality rigorous material on key subjects

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