Don’t Put All Your Trust in One Person

Put your trust in God, but keep your powder dry.
Oliver Cromwell

I had a good friend who had built a very successful carpet business from scratch. Twenty years later it was netting him over a million a year. This allowed him to open an art gallery, his true love.

Although his carpet business was a fairly large company, he had only one salesman, who was also his best friend. The trouble was, the salesman, as they often do, thought that he was not being paid enough. (He was making $250,000 in his late twenties, and this was 15 years ago.) One day he simply walked out; no comments, no arguments, no blow up, he simply left and started his own carpet business, taking half of my friend’s clients with him. It devastated my friend’s business; in less than six months, he lost everything!

In the karate business, the same story was repeated weekly. The dedicated instructor who had been taught from childhood by the senior master walked out the door with half the students, leaving the senior master devastated emotionally and financially.

I can’t tell you how many smart, successful people I know who have had hundreds of thousands of dollars embezzled by their bookkeepers or managers. (All of which could have been avoided by a 15-minute weekly audit of the financials.)

People are people; they are motivated by love, hate, jealousy, pride, money, ego, revenge, and a million other petty vanities.

Never put all your trust in one person.

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