Or better yet, move back to Bangladesh 🇧🇩 to build the next chapter of our history.

Mirza Salman Hossain Beg
5 min readOct 25, 2023
Photo by Samuel Ng on Unsplash

Having spent the last 18 years working in part-time and full-time capacities in 7 different industries across 2 geographies and with BUs across 11 nations, I had the privilege to witness some of the behaviors people go through when deciding on their career choices.

Starting a professional career can be challenging, but transitioning into a new industry or moving out of our comfort zone from a stable mid-career job can be even more difficult. As we get older and have more variables to deal with in life, like family, health issues, etc, we start making safer choices and often find ourselves stuck or unhappy with our careers.

But if I can share one insight from my career that was the reason behind my growth trajectory and finding more meaning in my choices, it would always be my willingness to challenge my comfort zone and try something new.

After graduation, I was about to pursue BATB and Unilever Bangladesh MT programs. Instead, I bunked them entirely and joined a local newspaper company (Prothom Alo) as their first Brand Executive. There, I learned how the media world works, how to launch an offline brand online, and how to monetize digitally back in 2009. I was among the first few people in the country to learn the offline-to-online monetization universe at scale. Had I not chosen this job, I wouldn’t have discovered the possibilities in the digital business landscape and learned how the media world works up close.

A little further into my career, while working for the fastest-growing WiMAX startup in the country (QUBEE), doing some of the best digital campaigns and brand executions at that time, I decided to leave that comfort zone and join one of the earliest startups in Bangladesh, G&R Ad Network (AdTech), to lead their sales and marketing. My close friends and colleagues thought I was taking a risky bet instead of exploring the big MNCs, which would give me better stability. My then-boss told me I was making the biggest mistake of my life. But if I hadn’t joined G&R, I wouldn’t have met some of the best product and engineering professionals, building a fantastic locally bootstrapped AdTech engine. I wouldn’t have learned how to grow a business 20x in 2 years, pitch to investors, and get acquired!

One year after the acquisition of G&R, I again left my comfort zone and spent 3 months unemployed by choice to figure out what I would do next. I ended up joining the Gramneenphone (GP) digital team. More than 80% of the people at GP told me directly and indirectly that I would fail. I’m not cut out for a mammoth like GP. I won’t survive more than 6 months. What I did instead, despite being an outsider, even surprised me! :)

Three and a half years after moving to Bangkok, Thailand, with a great job and living the best life I could ask for, I decided not just to rechallenge my comfort zone but, this time, uprooting my family with me to return to Bangladesh! Except for my family and my cofounders, everyone questions me why on earth I returned to Dhaka! There’s no sugarcoating that it is the biggest sacrifice in my life to date, and this is the riskiest of all adventures I got myself into. However, after spending over a year now building a startup in the worst time in history due to macroeconomic reasons and being in my worst health (thanks to Dhaka city), I still feel 100% aligned with my purpose to return home and do my part to build the next chapter of Bangladesh’s history.

I’m sharing my story because I’m sure many of you are feeling stuck, unhappy, or just restless to do something more meaningful with your time in your career. You’re tired of being in your comfort zone and looking for a push to make a leap of faith for something your heart already knows would be worth trying.

You might be thinking, but what about your family challenges and the responsibilities you currently have? Instead of anchoring yourself with this massive weight on your shoulders, I welcome you to think differently. This is something I’ve been applying for many years now. Trust me, I, too, have the constant family challenges I’ve been dealing with for a decade now, but that should not stop you from embarking on your own pursuit of life!

TRY THIS: Ask yourself two questions.

  1. What did you do to help your current situation over the years that significantly helped everyone in the process? If you had to continue this way, where would you and everyone affected in your case be 10–20 years from now?
  2. Now ask yourself, what if you took a calculated yet worthy risk in the next 3 years of your life, where you’ll be giving yourself permission to do something you really want and learn a lot in the process? Even if this time investment doesn’t yield the desired outcome, how much will you genuinely lose during this adventure of yours?

I bet most of you will find question #2 revealing something you didn’t imagine before. If you do it seriously enough, you’ll probably have a self-discovery like never before (much like I had many times over the years).

So why should you join 10 Minute School or quit your job to pursue something you always wanted, or better yet, return to Bangladesh from your comfortable life abroad to build Bangladesh 2.0?

Long story short, you can either have a clear sense of purpose like mine to do something larger than your life and do it regardless of the consequences because it’s an existential matter.

OR, you can do it because you owe it to yourself. You owe it to all your dreams and aspirations and the hard work you did to get to where you are today. You must do it because, deep down inside, you know you won’t be able to live with the regret of not trying something to challenge your comfort zone and find out what’s on the other side.

Bangladesh is at a tipping point now, and the next 5–6 years are crucial for what will become our beloved country. This small window of opportunity is not just for the country to accelerate into the future but also for any Bangladeshis living abroad to take advantage of. There’s no better time to make use of your years of experience and leverage them to do something big for yourself and the country.

The time is now.

If my thoughts resonate with you and you want to allow yourself to explore something new, I would be happy to schedule a call and discuss how you could make your next choice in your career. Just ping me on my Linkedin, briefly explaining your thoughts and aspirations, and you’ll be one step away from making your next leap!

🙋🏽‍♂️ PS: I have limited time; hence, this free mentorship/chat is only for those in mid-careers and looking to switch to pursue something new and challenging, like joining 10 Minute School.

And if you’re already convinced that you want to make the next move and explore some of the critical leadership roles we are looking to fill at 10MS, email me explaining why you’re the one with your latest resume!

Let’s do this! 🚦



Mirza Salman Hossain Beg

I write for dreamers, creators, and eternal optimists who want to accelerate life for the better. For my latest work, follow me at www.salmanhossain.com