Business Random Thoughts Selling

A simpler approach to solving problems

I love coffee! Not just any coffee but the freshly roasted, mid-dark or darker, 100% arabica that’s sourced from the best locations in India (or abroad, if I’m traveling but I don’t believing in shelling out a fortune for coffee; trust me, I’ve gotta keep it real at times.)! Now, go ahead, call me a coffee snob or simply crazy. It is what it is. Perhaps, the internet has really ruined me!

Anyway, three of the best sources I buy coffee from are: BlueTokai,, and Devan’s Coffee House. Sleep Owl Coffee is the latest edition to the list. They’ve literally eliminated the joy of “preparing” coffee (which, honestly can be a mess at times, particularly when you don’t have time) by putting it into an envelope! Yup, coffee bags! And I’ll be honest, I was a damn skeptical at first. My friend literally had to beg me to try a few samples. So, I did and man, I was happy! These guys get it! I’ve been a customer ever since!

Last year, in September, I ordered a couple of packs of flavoured coffee. It was good as expected. Just that each bag had a tag (that rhymes!) stuck to it, which means you had to pull it off before infusing the bag into water. Unfortunately, the bag got torn each time I tried to pull it off, no matter how gently I did that. It was frustrating as I’d wasted half a dozen of them already.

Surprisingly, I got a note from the company within 3-4 days regarding the same issue. I was blown away. The timing was just right. Apparently, this was a wide-spread issue across that particular batch of the product. They sent me a replacement pack for each I’d bought and I now had too much coffee of the same flavour! Anyway, I decided to quickly consume the defective lot by extracting coffee from the bag and putting it into a pour over. It wasn’t inconvenient, it’s the way I’ve been making coffee for ages.

I didn’t order anything else from Sleep Owl after I ran through the batch until last week. The order got delivered yesterday. (It’s a medium-dark variant, pumpkin spice flavour.) I opened the coffee bag and lo!, the tag isn’t stuck to the bag anymore. Perhaps, it was an accident but it wasn’t. I opened another pack this evening and they actually have stopped sticking the tag to the bag! This is great! Here’s why — the biggest question I had while finishing those defective coffee bags was, “why the heck do they have to glue this tag in the first place?” It didn’t make any sense. And I’m pretty sure someone might have mentioned it too!

Here’s the best part and why I think this company is going to make it big – they listened and acted on it. Sure, they’re an innovative start-up, it’s what they’re suppose to do. But if every company was to act on what’s so damn obvious, the world would’ve been a much better place. Since, it’s not, we rave about those bold innovators who make the change.

The biggest learning (or rather, an affirmation) I’ve had is this — the most effective approach to solving problems is often the simplest. Just detach the problem from the solution.