Miss Opportunity: What Would You Do?

Following is a real life scenario.

What would you do? You are invested financially and productively in a new company, a wildly innovative new venture. Your job is to manage the operation. You have designed the logo and written the manual for the product. You have drafted the contracts. You are the go-to guy with plenty of practical experience. This is in contrast to your two partners who are twenty years your junior. Your main job is to act as referee between the arguing two.

One partner is the engineering guy, the one who is making and designing the parts. He is creative but his mind is jumping everywhere but on the job at hand. The work is not getting done. There is no focus. The second partner is a good salesman, but his enthusiasm gets the better of his judgment. He is spending money on production that the company doesn’t have. Worse, he just signed a large deal with a client that has a reputation for not paying their bills. There is a very good chance that the client won’t.

The partners each own 45% of the company. You own 10%. As youngsters, they have nothing: no assets, no cash and no credit. If the business bellies up, they won’t lose anything, but you will lose your house, your other investments and probably your wife.

What would you do?

The company was called Apple. Steve Jobs was the enthusiastic cheerleader. Steve Wozniak was the brain trust. Ron Wayne was the guy who did not want 10% of the craziness and quickly sold his shares for $800. Today, they call him the unluckiest man in Silicon Valley. Read More.

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  1. No wonder Ron Wayne looks so miserable in that AP photo…