Most of us are chasing Big Goals every day. Getting that promotion, KOW slippers surpassing Crocs in terms of worldwide sales numbers (I mean really, god-awful looking plastic shoes. How hard should that be??), writing a book, raising your children to become model citizens, or -very popular with visitors to developing countries- Making A Difference. But the thing with Big Goals is that they tend to be quite lengthy processes that require incredible perseverance. If they don’t turn out to unattainable altogether. Haven’t we all written a chapter or two of what was to become the next Man Booker sensation only to realize it is quite a bit harder than we imagined? And who hasn’t travelled to developing countries thinking ‘I could really do something to make it better here! If only they could go to school…’ Only to find out that after primary school comes high school, then vocational school or University, and that any of this education is actually quite useless unless there is employment. And KOW slippers have been out there for 3 years but our numbers are nowhere near those of the public’s favorite plastic slipper’s.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not a plea to let go of ambition. Or to not have Big Goals at all. Au contraire! I’m a firm believer in reaching for the stars. And your own imagination really is the only limitation. In fact, as a former diplomat with no handcrafting skills whatsoever who is now running a footwear brand AND factory, I think I’m quite the living example of that adagio. I am however making a plea to take a moment occasionally and enjoy the small accomplishments on your way to the Big Goal!
Today I’m doing exactly that: I’m letting in the Kingdom of Wow-effect. Rather than looking at my computer screen I am looking up into the workshop. My eye falls on a random pair of our KOW espadrilles on the edge of my desk. It was an idea that came up, barely five months ago. And as it goes with ideas, it was not accompanied by a sensible and detailed plan. I just went ahead and ordered 500 pairs of soles. Because, well, you’ve got to start somewhere! And now, I’m looking at rows of neatly stacked espadrilles in all colors and sizes and it hits me: we did it!! We are actually making espadrilles! Like that, an idea came into being. And I nearly missed this moment of amazement because my excel files kept screaming at me that The Big Goal is yet to be reached. It’s freaking amazing. We make shoes. I think I need to go out and buy cake. Or Champaign. Or both!