The past few weeks have been insane. From leaving for Taiwan for a 3 week reservist stint to falling the sickest I’ve ever been(when i got back to Singapore) and then having to cope with a backlog of work and technically losing my lead developer to another job(which puts a huge dent on things but it’s totally understandable) Not to mention that someone we contracted a project to disappeared and now i’m forced to build a system that would take 6 weeks to build in about 2 weeks with the deadline being while I was in Taiwan. Other personal issues plague this mind too but many are beyond my influence.
But these past few weeks I reflected on my life and had some time to think about the work I do. Unfortunately, it’s not been going the way I had hoped and the day-to-day rush never really gave me the chance to look at it as critically as I do now. I understand now more than ever what Meng Wong meant by the “consultancy trap”. I’ve never been more stressed, tired, bogged down and unhappy. And I’m still getting remnants of that 2 week migraine whose cause no one can seem to identify(frequency is getting less though).
And so I’ve decided to get my team to leave the consulting and development business. I think it’s just not bringing us the returns we had planned to get…or maybe we’re just not cut out for it but we’ll figure that out later. Being a startup of sorts, we may still do a project or two in our personal capacity to just tide us though rough times. We realised that consulting has caused us to sidetrack so much that we’ve been unable to build our own in-house product. Something we had hoped to do since we started the company. Something that requires everyone to focus on solving just one thing and doing that well. Perhaps someday I’ll write about what I’ve learnt over this past year but that’s a whole different post altogether.
So what are we going to do now? We’re going to create our own in-house product. We’ve toyed with several ideas for months but finally settled down to pursuing something that was totally not on our radar until now. It’s going to force us to learn about a whole new industry altogether. Scary, yes. Excited, yes. Difficult, definitely – just as difficult as breaking the news to the many partners that we’ve been working with for so long that we’re embarking on something quite off the main road.
I don’t know if this is the best course of action. But based on the present circumstances, I know that this is the right one.
A small team has to cut their losses quick and focus their efforts on a single point on the wall if they’re going to stand any chance of punching through it.
I hope to see you on the other side.