The Long Story Short | 01
There’s so much that goes on behind the scenes at Rapscallion_HQ that you don't get to see; some of it we hide for a reason because it’s not always strawberries and cream and that’s what the customer wants, right?
Strawberries and cream/Strawberry Soda on ice?
With a dash of whiskey?
After some long discussions and a month of reflecting on 2021; we thought it’s time to give you the Long Story Short.
Warts and all.
Now Gregor and I feel we are pretty resilient people; you need to have some guts to start your own business.
However, Season 2 of Covid aka 2021 has really tested us and for the most part, it felt as though the bottom had fallen from our boat.
Before we knew it, a hard Brexit had wiped out our Route to Market in Europe and took exciting discussions in France, Germany, Sweden and Denmark off the table.
Getting hold of the materials necessary to manufacture became torturous; cans, lids, cardboard, CO2 all became scarce, but through extensive negotiation by Gregor, we managed to keep the dream alive.
Welcome to the World of Manufacturing!
From covid restrictions, staffing, Brexit, supply chain issues to every bloody machine breaking down; it’s a wonder we still have a smile on our face!
It's times like these that we wondered why we wouldn’t just outsource production like many competitors, it certainly would be a hell of a lot easier!
But the truth is we love what we do. Every can that we manufacture has to be the best quality, made with only raw ingredients. No compromises. No shortcuts.
So the only way to continue was to keep paddling our sinking boat forward but by the time we got to December, the dreaded ‘Brain Fog’ set in.
Gregor and I were crawling to the finish line both mentally and physically and the more we speak to friends and family in all industries now, we realised we weren’t the only ones!
I don’t ever think I’ve ever seen Gregor (who I normally call the Grinch) so excited about Christmas!
Christmas was spent reconnecting with family and being totally absorbed by our new nephew; we forgot how mesmerising a baby can be, and how all our own issues can melt into the background.
After firmly securing our place as “World’s Best Uncle and Auntie”, we ran up North to Aberfeldy.
Days were spent reading, walking, swimming, paddle boarding and sleeping to shake off those 2021 cobwebs.
Nothing like kicking the brain fog then jumping into 2℃ water at Killiecrankie, right?
In truth, it was only Gregor that had the guts to jump in, head and all.
I defaulted to "gracefully" easing myself in and bopping around watching large pieces of ice float past me.
“Come let us spend the lightsome days, In the Birks of Aberfeldy”
Aberfeldy gave us the time and space to process the previous year’s successes and failures, and insights to start building stronger foundations for the future of Rapscallion.
We also had some incredible wins in 2021 that we are hugely grateful for; mentions in the FT and Guardian and Herald certainly gave us an immediate boost and we found YOU!
Or you found us?
We learnt a lot of lessons the hard way last year and I truly believe that we always need to give ourselves that time to think and reflect before moving forwards.
This year, we are implementing fixes to all the issues we felt in Summer 2021:
Raising Investment: securing the automated machinery needed to take the next jump in production.
Hunting for Talent!
Full Website Rebuild: More content, easier to use, building an online community.
Moving to Digital: Getting all of our manufacturing systems rebuilt online, improving our culture and communication with hybrid working.
So The Long Story Short is that we made it out in one piece and I hope you all did too.
If you want to see more emails like this or if you want me to shhh, please send an email and let me know.
Ps. Below is proof that I got in the water too.
And yes, I kept my beanie on... I will not apologise
P.s.s. And this is how Gregor was feeling after his first dive in...