Actually it’s both, a little more and a little less. It’s difficult to pinpoint the real birthday of MING: though we’ve now been selling watches in the public domain for just over a year, these products of course have a significantly longer gestation period. And there’s a design period before that, and a funding/business period that might or might not run concurrently…I think you see where this is headed. This week’s series of posts are perhaps a little more philosophical and candid in nature than our usual; it’s not often that one gets to look back on such a major journey. We’ve collated thoughts from each of our team members in an attempt to provide a more balanced, overall view.
We'll kick things off after the jump with Ming's and Praneeth's thoughts.
The team will tell you I’m the eternal pessimist; there’s a backup plan for everything. I didn’t expect us to get anywhere near this far in the first year; I’m happy we’re still a going concern and that we remain in a position to make watches that excite us. More than anything as we look to grow the lineup into less mainstream models, we have to ask ourselves if the pieces still get us hot and bothered, regardless of what they are. The best model should always be the next one.
I really do believe this, both because I can see the board a year or two or more out from now, and I know that as much as I like what we’re selling now – I like what’s coming even more. I could tell you what’s probably already known – it’s much more difficult to design a cheaper watch than a more expensive one – but I’d rather say that the challenge of designing something with less forces you to really prioritize what’s important, but oddly also tends to spur you into ‘what if’ questions that lead to interesting results when the budgetary constraints are relaxed somewhat.
Most importantly though, I have to say a huge personal thank you to my team and our suppliers – if my own stress levels are any measure, it’s been one of the most challenging things any of us has done - both the volume and nature of the curveball tasks, and you’ve all gone above and beyond (even if sometimes it seems the watch industry has trouble keeping schedule!). I am constantly reminded we are friends first, watch lovers second, and professionals last – but by no means least.
Lastly: without the support of our friends in the media (too many to mention individually) and all of our enthusiastic customers (even more) – there’s simply no way we’d still be here today. Thank you for your confidence in us; especially those of you who are still patiently awaiting your 19.01s – we are doing our utmost and are confident they will be delivered on schedule.
Here’s to even more exciting things to come in year 2!
It’s clear by now that MING has had a significant impact on the lives of the entire team - but it’s been personally memorable for slightly different reasons. I am the youngest member of Team MING and it’s not everyday you're invited to be part of an undertaking like this. While some still think I’m crazy for my career choices, it’s been a defining experience - personally and professionally - and a choice that I would happily repeat.
Over the past year, there have been sleepless nights, countless expletives and far too many cigars expended at problems we could have never predicted, but we’ve also met fellow watch enthusiasts and collectors - many of whom we now call friends - and witnessed sketches on a piece of paper transform into watches on customers wrists. I remain convinced that the whole team is mildly masochistic, for that’s the only way to thrive amid all the various curveballs and surprises (both good and bad) that the year has thrown at us.
I am and will always be grateful to MT for conscripting me into this craziness we call a watch brand and to the team for their confidence and trust in me. As Dr. Bosse mentioned, these are some of the finest gentlemen, I’ve had the pleasure of working with.
Finally - I would be remiss to not thank our production partners, friends in the media and of course, our customers, for all their support. None of this would be possible without all of you.
Here’s to an exciting second year!