Season 1     EPISODE 7
নভেম্বর 26, 2021

A crisis among co-founders | Garima Sahai

Garima Sahai, the co-founder of a social enterprise focused on providing high-quality sanitation solutions for rural India, shares how the absence of a detailed road map for the growth of the organisation led to differences between her and her co-founder, resulting in Garima stepping away from their organisation.

2 min read

Garima Sahai is a United Nations and Forbes recognised social entrepreneur in public health. She is the regional head (Asia) of strategic partnerships at Medtronic LABS, where she oversees the expansion of all their social businesses through government and large-scale institutional partnerships. She previously co-founded Svadha, a social enterprise driving an ‘unorganised’ rural WASH market to a ‘solution-driven’ organised sector. Garima is an economist by training and has more than 13 years of global multisectoral experience in impact measurement, strategy, and business development.


“When I thought hard about the reason for these misalignments, I realised it was because I hadn’t done sufficient due diligence around the ‘adaptive aspects’ of the partnership with my co-founder—aspects which go beyond technical compatibility and revolve around ‘how’ we achieve our long-term vision. In hindsight, I feel that going ahead with my business idea on my own would have been a better route to take. I could have partnered when the road map was clearer, or when I could identify tangible gaps that needed to be filled. It would have been a better strategy to bring on a business partner after having tested our ability to work together for some time, and having assessed the key aspects of the partnership.”

Read more:

  1. Read Garima’s story on Failure Files.
  2. Read more failure stories on Failure Files.
  3. Check out some ideas and tools from Fail Forward to help your organisation take risks, learn, adapt, and fail intelligently.
  4. Understand why the social sector must recognise and talk about failure.
  5. Learn why talking about failure is crucial for growth.

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