It is exactly 365 days since I had one of the most brutal experiences one could imagine in any business. Although the paperwork reflects it as voluntary liquidation, it was in essence a violation of every bit of integrity and more than that – a deep betrayal of friendship and trust.
Now, I can tell that you enjoy a good entrepreneurial story, but I am going to hold out on this ending for a little while longer. You see, I’ve been instrumental in, and begun more than a half-a-dozen startups in my life. Some of them were really successful. One or two did ok. And there were two disasters too.
But it was all a big learning curve. And if I had half the chance, I’d probably do it all again. Would I change tactics and thinking? Sure. But I’d also be ready to make some all-new mistakes, all over again!
I think that’s the most fascinating part about business: it is impossible to ever know it all. Just like the ending of my opening bid to this story, it could represent one big cliffhanger that leads you into a whole new adventure of learning in the next episode. A fresh beginning.
My intention is to share all of my learning here – one cappuccino at a time. I want to take time and write about things I’ve leant. Lessons, in part, to remind me of what it is that I know now. Possible warnings not to make some of those mistakes again.
Some will be gems, gleaned for conversations with people who inspire me. Others, conclusions you may have come to long before. But the important part of knowledge is that we share.
The decision I came to as I worked through some emotions on the issue that brought me here today, is that one needs to look at every situation presented to you, as an opportunity. This year was mine to stop and take stock. To grow. To make a conscious decision to move forward and to build again.
Big. Magnificent. And with more purpose.