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Murphy’s Law: A Love Story

Car Love_XSmallMy client was a car guy…and he was terrific. A gifted mechanic, to say he loved what he did was an understatement. He was passionate about it. He reveled in the mystery of that unknown knocking sound and prided himself on being able to fix problems that defied even description. People kept telling him to open his own shop. “You’ll have them lined up around the block,” they told him.

After 15 years, he did.

And there was a bank to find, a line of credit to work out, employees to hire and shifts to create, policies to form, a lease to sign, equipment to install, and marketing to do. Months went by and the only car my car guy saw was the one he drove him home at night exhausted.

You see, my mechanic had promoted himself to the level of his own incompetence – running a company. And in doing so, he took himself away from his highest and best use which was fixing cars.

So if you know someone in this situation, or think it even sounds a little like you (maybe sometimes?), what do you do?

I don’t have a quick, ten word answer to this. But after 23 years practicing business law, here’s what I do know: Every business owner should have someone – may a few someones – outside the company to whom she can pour out her soul – all the angst of running a company, together with the stress and doubt that goes with it. Ideas come from give and take. And when they promote themselves to CEO, the give and take is the one thing most entrepreneurs seem to accept has been lost.

My advice: Don’t lose that give and take without a fight. Keep it. Make it a priority by putting sessions on the calendar.   After all…love takes work.