My Favorite Mistake — 222: Tech CEO Indus Khaitan’s $6.5 Billion Mistake and What He Learned

Episode page with transcript, video, and more

My guest for Episode #222 of the My Favorite Mistake podcast is Indus Khaitan,  the CEO & Founder of Quolum, a company funded by Sequoia and Nexus.

Mark's new book – The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation

Indus has 20 years of business growth, product management, and SaaS experience. He has analyzed SaaS buying for 20+ companies with over $500,000 in SaaS spend and has been the leader of growth for a unicorn.

Indus grew up in a mining town where 2-3 homicides daily were a norm, and eventually escaped what he calls the “India Coal Mafia” that plagued his life and left for America. He made the most out of this move and became a founder, a father, and a pilot. He now aims to help others make the same growth in their business and life.

In this episode, Indus shares his favorite mistake story about selling a previous company “prematurely.” Why does he now think they should have persisted? What was the thought process at the time? What was the risk of not selling? We discuss all of that and more.

Questions and Topics:

  • What's a unicorn?
  • What do you mean by the “Indian Coal Mafia”?
  • If everyone is telling you it’s a mistake… are you wrong or being a visionary?
  • What positive comes out of a mistake?
  • Lessons learned for next time? Trusting your gut? Putting your foot down as you said? Risk of overadjustment?
  • Learning vs. agonizing over it
  • This isn’t your profession, but I have questions for you as a Pilot – preventing mistakes?
  • Difference between preventing mistakes in a repeatable process (like taking off and landing) vs. doing innovative things?
  • Doesn’t mean anybody can fly a plane?
  • Get there-itis may have killed Kobe Bryant
  • Tell us about your current company, Quolum…
  • Mistakes companies make with their portfolio of SaaS applications and spending?

Support this podcast: