Things that could have gone wrong ...but didn't

My parents have always told me to take time to be grateful about the good things in life. While I don't see value in counting good things on a daily basis (remember the widely successful 3 good things exercise? Doesn't work for me). With time I have realized that it is good to take time out to be grateful once in a while (even though we don't admit it, parents are right. Aren't they? :)). If nothing it puts things into a macro perspective and is a welcome change from daily fire-fighting. 

I had listed down "how I fail" in an earlier post (connected reading).  In this post I will try to be candid about things in the last year that could have gone wrong (in the businesses I invest in or help run)... but didn't:

1. Last year we launched a brand of snacks. This year we doubled the portfolio and expanded sales. This is what could have gone wrong but didn't: 
- The distributor could have not liked the new products we offered and consequently could have decided to not launch anything. 
- The products went through the usual development process to establish the ideal product-market fit. Although the manufacturing staff were experienced, the process and raw materials needed specifically for Canadian market was new. We could have made numerous mistakes in getting from samples to manufacturing in large quantities. 
- The products were manufactured in the middle of incessant rains and flooding (in India). The products could have turned up soggy. 
- Packets were designed and the  electronic cylinders were manufactured. Cylinders were then shipped to the pouch manufacturer for making the pouches. The final products (tens of thousands of pouches/packets) were then shipped to the snack manufacturing facility. All that was done again in the middle of rains and flooding. 
- The shipping company took a while to get the products cleared from customs. I am guessing border control did a whole bunch of testing on them but found nothing. 

2. As part of a capital investment in a company, a friend and I funded the construction of a small factory India. Although we had delays and went over the budget, we didn't screw up in any major fashion. We were also able to control the pace of cash flows until the factory got ready (that changed soon after but the factory construction was finished by then). 

3. I had made an angel investment in a startup run by a friend, couple of years back. This year my relationship with the CEO came to an almost breaking point. In the end good sense prevailed and we were able to de-escalate the situation (even though I was not happy about it). 

4. One of my other investments came close to a exit but the investment firm backed out at the last moment. The company management was rose up to the challenge to find another investor. As of today a fresh exit is on the cards and things look good so far. 

I guess irrespective of reasons, some things work and some things don't. The reasons can help improve the chances of success in future, but the real point is to move forward and do the best you can. 

No comments:

Post a Comment