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Dealing with Uncertainty
2 min read

Dealing with Uncertainty

I had this topic jotted down a few months ago.

If the default state for a startup is failure and building a startup and succeeding in it is a probability game, then as a founder how do you grapple with that level of uncertainty?

It somehow feels a lot more appropriate now, as it is a question lurking on everyone's mind. I have this question too.


The way that I visualize this is that, I am an individual who has the capability to drive. And I have a vehicle - its a two wheeler, or a car, or a dirt bike. Could even be a road roller, if you think of it. There is the destination that I need to reach to achieve a goal, and the path to it has to be tread.

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Photo by Dino Reichmuth / Unsplash

In this scenario, what is certain is the individual capability you possess (to be able to drive) and the capability of your team (the thing that gets you there).

Know where the destination is. That is what changes. When things rock and rumble, the destination where you have to go to achieve the goal changes. And instead of heading to the city, the destination is now on the top of the mountain. and there might or might not be well laid roads.

Depending on the tactic that you might require to get there (and where the destination currently stands) you either need a team that can be adaptive on its feet, or to put together a new team if needed.

In video game parlance, you have a quest and you have to reach a destination to find a rare item, and when the system goes into chaos, you realize the item has now been shifted to some other location and you need a change in strategy and tactic.


If you are tackling a fundamental long term need and are not chasing a short-term trend, when things settle down, people will pursue it again. And with the whole system up in crisis, it means things have hit a pause. You are not exactly moving, but neither is anyone else. It is like someone has cast a time freeze spell. If you want to move a few things around to course correct and change trajectory, now would be the time.

Take the time to continuously invest in yourself. As Abraham Lincoln famously said,“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” ― Abraham Lincoln

Most of us exhaust ourselves because we are continuously swinging with blunt instruments. Being agile and adaptable to the situation means, both you and your team are now sharpening your axes, so all you have to do is one good swing to get back on track.

This is the time when being extraordinary pays.

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