Hands On Podcast: Don’t over-build, over-plan or over-hire + Eating your own dog food (literally)

by Index Ventures


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Don’t over-build, over-plan or over-hire + Eating your own dog food (literally)

Dylan Munro is a Canadian Harvard graduate, charades enthusiast and the COO of Spot & Tango, an innovative dog food company promoting healthy, happy canines. Before striving to solve the pet health crisis, Dylan worked on diverse projects at McKinsey in a quest to find his true passion until he met Russell Breuer, CEO of Spot & Tango. In this episode, Dylan shares his secrets for not taking himself too seriously, building a scrappy leading company and finding small but meaningful ways of sticking out in a crowded market.

Listen to Hands On on Spotify. Also available on Apple Podcast & Simplecast.

Jump straight into:
(05:52) - Dylan’s roots and how he stumbled into the dog food industry. “There's been no innovation at all. It's just the same old dog food with new pastel packaging for the past five decades.”

(06:55) - Words to live by (and not live by), a pearl of wisdom on watering plants and a round of Either/Or. “I want it to succeed at all costs, but I never take myself too seriously in the process. You know, there's always room for laughter.”

(15:24) - Canine Nutrition: Innovating in the pet food industry and addressing the pet health crisis in America. “When you take your dog to the vet, the first thing they'll say is, ‘What are you feeding your dog?’ And it makes a big difference – if you eat better, you feel better.”

(22:13) - Doing more with less: How to stick out in a crowded market with a small, scrappy team. “If you can be different in enough little ways, it can add up to a big big difference in your brand.”

(29:48) - Learnings from Dylan’s musical background and The Harvard Undergraduate Drummers (THUD). “I think it taught me how to be a manager at a relatively young age, build a team and have the confidence even though there's still moments of self-consciousness for sure.”

(30:26) - Why dogs? Treating our pets as a part of a healthy family. “People don't know what they're feeding their dogs and it's not their fault. It's because everybody's telling them that what they're feeding them is amazing. And it's really not.”

(34:01) - Crazy Points: Some of Spot & Tango’s unconventional practices. “Even not so long ago we were out there hands-on ourselves. Some people would look at that and say, ‘Really? The COO and CEO of the company are going out there and packing boxes for eight hours on the weekend?’”

Published — June 30, 2022