Anticipation is power. When it comes to running a business, this couldn’t be more true. But you can’t see everything, because you’re not superhuman — you can’t be everywhere, all of the time. You need a team to help carry the business and to help it grow. Unfortunately, not everyone will be honest about what’s happening when you’re not looking.
The stories are everywhere: cases where business owners have had the rug pulled out from under them, been taken advantage of, or “bamboozled,” when they least expected it. Here are three lessons from Tony you can use to avoid those damaging situations.
LESSON #1: KNOW WHO YOUR PARTNERS ARE
“I’ve had partners I got in business with who are well-qualified, and they turn around and they lied about what they had.” — Tony Robbins
Partnerships can be highly beneficial to businesses. They allow you to take on new feats and collaborate with like-minded individuals to turn something small into a larger success. But partnerships can also be tricky and they require one thing above anything else: trust.
Without that five-letter word, you don’t have a partnership, you have a shakedown. In order to avoid an unfortunate result, do your research. Dig into your potential partners’ credentials and do a thorough check of their background. And keep this Tony trip in mind: just because someone comes to the table with money doesn’t mean they are credible. Do your homework.
LESSON #2: PUT THE RIGHT PEOPLE IN PLACE
“I can remember vividly coming home from one of my early seminars early in my career, my little company with 12 employees, and 11 of them showed up at the airport to tell me that if I didn’t fire the person who was running the show they’d all leave even though they loved me. And then I came back and found out that she spent all the money, and I needed $50,000 to keep the doors open, and I didn’t have $50,000. I needed it by
Monday, and it was Friday.” — Tony Robbins
Character is something we develop as we grow into adulthood. It’s influenced by many factors, and without any real effort, is unlikely to change. As Tony states above, not all of the people you hire will have a character that aligns with your values or beliefs. When that is a the case, they might think a certain behavior is acceptable that you clearly think is not. Hire people who align with your own values and beliefs, and the conflict of questionable character will cease to exist. Putting the wrong person in a position of power can be detrimental to your company, so be careful to hire the right people and put them in the right roles.
LESSON #3: DEVELOP YOUR MUSCLE
“Life gives you pain until you build enough muscle so that no longer can take you down. I used to try to figure out how to deal with $50,000, and then I had a ten million dollar thing, and now I’ve got a hundred million dollar thing. So when you learn how to do a hundred million dollar thing, you make $500 million. It’s all a psychological threshold of control. The more you can handle, the more is given to you.” — Tony Robbins
From questionable partners to money-embezzling employees, these people will only help you to identify what you’ve been doing wrong so that you don’t make the same mistakes again. It’s these lessons that help us to build the muscle we need to make our business rock-solid. Of course, if you can be vigilant about these common misfortunes ahead of time, and take heed to Tony’s lessons, you might save yourself a significant amount of loss of both time and money.