Retiring a Prototype

Posted by on Apr 17, 2015 in Rants & Reflections, Sue's Blog | 2 Comments
Retiring a Prototype

I made a really tough decision earlier this week. I decided to put my Hawai’i work on hold until further notice.

My trips back-and-forth for the past four months have been very successful in re-establishing my network, and I have enjoyed every minute of it. But at this point, I do not have enough confirmed clients to sustain my monthly trips. So after much deliberation, my husband and I decided that I need to stop pursuing business there and concentrate first on establishing myself here on the mainland. 

It was kind of devastating. For maybe… half a day.

Once the decision was made, I realized that I’ve been entirely too distracted for months. I had a whole bunch of lines thrown out, both here on the mainland and in Hawai’i, and keeping an eye on all of them has been simply exhausting. On Monday I started the process of reeling back the Hawai’i ones, and with each email message I sent — and kind reply I received — I felt an incredible sense of relief.

Then came the energy pulse.

I started making commitments again to myself and my community here. I said “yes” to doing a taiko performance that I couldn’t commit to earlier. I volunteered for a neighborhood service project in mid-May. And I restarted a morning walking routine.

The peace of mind that I got from this decision must’ve been exactly what I needed to re-boot, because sometime mid-Wednesday an idea for a brand new business model popped into my head. I’m putting the pieces in place now to make it happen.

In all the entrepreneurship literature, you often hear the mantra of “fail fast, fail often.” I was thinking of titling this blog post that, but it was way too negative. I would never call this episode a failure. It was just a prototype. For that matter, every one of my jobs so far have been prototypes leading to this moment. I’m ready for the next iteration.

Did you see that? I just grew my Sisu.

Yuen Designs 2.0 was launched on November 1, 2014. It had a good 6 month run, but stay tuned for 3.0!


  1. Meriel
    April 18, 2015

    aloha Susan,
    I have watched you lead, follow instructions, guide, decide, accept, reject, change direction and more over the years. I commend your integrity and strength and wise self awareness in this most recent decision. Change is sometimes painful but when you believe in what you are doing, everybody benefits. Look at how quickly peace settled in. And look at the opportunities you have given yourself for new directions in your immediate backyard. Taking time to smell the roses AND value them Eh? Good on you! More success and fulfillment lie ahead. Congrats and Godspeed!!!!

  2. renee yuen
    April 25, 2015

    Cool pens! But really, best of luck with the relaunch. You’re smart and innovative. It will all come together!


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