There seems to be such an immense force to build a direct to consumer product business quicker than the cadence of the business. Always so many moving parts in any business and some times it works and sometimes it doesn’t. The stakes get higher at each round. Having an expert engineering team who gets how to build organic growth for the full gross margin is a serious asset.
There are many unbelievable product people out there building brands. The best product people tend to be the best entrepreneurs particularly when it comes to software and deep tech platforms. Yet it takes time to build a brand and that goes hand in hand with a company. Growing at all costs is tremendous pressure and puts the importance of building out the proper senior team with the right skills as a sidebar.
Uber changed the way we use transportation. The culture was awful. Away who seems to have found themselves of forgetting to build a happy company culture was not given the memo either. There are many more that we have yet to hear about. Why?
There is a cost to growth but with the proper tools, there doesn’t have to be. Why doesn’t everyone sitting around the board table talk about this and make it a priority? Why aren’t they helping the founders who go from an idea to a team of ten to a company of a hundred work with someone to understand what that means. Why not create a culture where people learn, work hard but also have flexibility in their lives with internal role models and mentorship? It takes a shit load of time and energy but the bonus is people will be happy, they will be loyal, they will be excited to participate in building something big with staying power. It is as simple as kids who don’t get enough outdoor playtime or art in their curriculum is a huge mistake because those creative things actually help their math and science brain.
This concept of just plunging capital into CPG to get in front of as many eyeballs as possible with the foot on the gas at all cost to building as quickly to get to an exit makes zero sense to me.
There is going to be another reckoning of millions down the drain with unhappy employees and companies way overvalued as consumer product companies when it could have been such a different story. Perhaps it is something to think more about when building a company. You catch more flies with honey and honey sticks.