Here’s a business example I hope might prove useful to all of you here: I’ll go through the story and highlight the lessons you need to adhere to as I go.
Story time. I’m a self-employed rehab trainer who has run my own business for years. Recently one of the places I worked out of was closing, so another trainer who I had known for several years approached me about the possibility of teaming up together and opening our own gym. I didn’t know him personally very well, but I knew his work ethic (which was high) and that he had a good system under his belt and if we worked together, we would likely do well.
For the past ten months we planned, developed logos and web sites, found property and secured it and done a six-figure renovation with the help of a hefty bank loan. We had five staff members. There’s been insane hours and stress poured into this thing over that time. I personally spent probably a couple of hundred hours on the place unpaid to try to get things rolling.
Lesson One: Trust your gut
There were red flags from the start. Stupid decisions made by me that were far too trusting in this other person. When it came time to finally sign the bank loan I was actually on the phone with my lawyer asking what he would do because I wasn’t 100% sure. Not having any other options (or at least that’s how I felt) forced me to do something that my mind was screaming at me not to.
Lesson Two: Don’t listen to what they say, watch what they do
The treatment escalated once the location opened and started to operate and my role as an equal was subverted repeatedly. Things we had agreed upon weren’t honoured. Decisions were made without my input. And when confronted about it, he ignored things, said I was crazy or sluffed them off as a mistake. He had control over the finances and things started to not get paid on time.
He treated contractors and employees poorly if they didn’t do what he wanted. I spent a lot of time playing good cop while he played bad cop constantly. Marketing was terrible. Then I saw signs of him being part of a shady MLM company. The last straw was him flying himself to the Dominican to attend a conference for his MLM company with points from the company credit card.
Lesson Three: Prepare for true colours to emerge
I told him I wanted out, which he claimed came as a surprise.
Then I found out the big reveal, which is similar to those of you who find out your girlfriend is a cheater. The guy had basically been screwing me intentionally from the start. My name had been taken off everything, there was no signed partnership agreement, and he basically used me as a guarantor for the bank loan.
Once the decision was made, the relationship we had deteriorated into nothing and now lawyers are involved. This is someone who planned their future with me previously. Just like many of you with LTRs, things can turn on a dime, and this should be expected when they go south.
Lesson Five: Reputation is important
I have a great network in my city and I’m at least business friends with a ton of people, which I’ve intentionally cultivated over the years. Once I reached out, I had four options available to me to relocate my business within a couple of days. I’ve also been spreading the word (subtly as to not incur any legal issues) about what happened, and this guys name is going to be mud within my industry in my city from now on.
The court of public opinion is in today’s world a real thing and having that in your favour can reap benefits after the situation is over.
Now, the good news is that while setting himself up to own the business, he has also taken on a ton of liability that I don’t have to worry about like a massive commercial lease my name is nowhere near. Him and his wife own a home whereas I don’t so the bank loan officer (especially once I told him the story) told me they would go after that asset first if it ever came to that. He’s already struggling financially (due to his crappy marketing and spending like crazy) and the writing on the wall is his business will fail within the year while mine will be fine. So at least I have that satisfaction.
My own personal lesson is that I was stupid and didn’t trust my gut, take a perspective look at things from the outside as I should have, and then let things get too deep. The fallout looks like it will be minimal in the grand scheme of things but all of this could have been avoided if I had followed the principles above.
As with relationships with women, the same rules apply to many different places in your life. Business relationships many times turn out the same way as any other one, and as a Red Pill man you should conduct yourself with the same principles in mind.