Tag Archives: Andrall Pearson

Risk and Failure

“I finally got around to reading your interest card,” said Andrall Pearson former President and COO of Pepsi Co. and my professor during a second year course at the Harvard Business School.  His quip came as he leaned on my desk with hushed tones moments before class started.   The card, an arcane pre-Internet system – think index card – held a few sentences authored by students to convey our interests to professors.    On my card I’d divulged my dream of running an emerging business.  That day the class was scheduled to discuss a 1980’s-style emerging business, Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT).   OAT was founded in 1978 by a high school anthropology teacher in her three-story house in Cambridge, Massachusetts.   My little visit from Andrall was my heads up, referred to as a soft-call, that I would be leading the class’ discussion that day.  I had about a minute and one-half to prepare. Continue reading