Business Ethics / Investing / Investment Groups / Respect

Respect… an exercise applied to business

Business People Meeting Bowing Japanese Culture ConceptIt’s kind of the calibrator for society, don’t you think? Whether we are talking about relationships (romantic, friendship, or work), it is what separates up from down, good from evil, right from wrong, something from sustaining or imploding. It’s the greatest currency anyone can possess or give, and it costs nothing.

Respect…In other words, for anything to last, succeed, and thrive…it has to be there.

Lately, I have been seeing a lot of “disrespect”. Don’t worry, I’m not going to make this into a political blog and discuss the interactions of the elected U.S. “Kid in Chief” with the berated media. Even to write this blog is a “tell” that I’m getting old and grumpy! With that disclosure, let’s look at the workspace specifically (and with an additional exclusion of the recent Harvey Weinstein and the runaway #MeToo phenomenon).

Funding of new projects

Grace Century brings our projects to a wide range of entities; from High Net Worth Individuals, VC’s and to Angel Investors. In the beginning, these firms are young, underfunded, and time is of the very essence. Let’s be honest with ourselves (I am speaking to all of you in the industry) if you see something interesting; you probably like it immediately. If it’s complicated and hard to understand…it’s not going to get better with time. I am not suggesting the elimination of due-diligence (on the contrary), but you know pretty quick if you want to do something. When a group like ours, who has already done extensive due-diligence… presents something, then it should just be a matter of do I truly have the funding and how much!

Maybe it’s just my naivety speaking. Let’s talk investments under consideration:

If you let a project that you are considering for investment sit on your desk, you are hurting two groups…the companies and yourself. Time is the most valuable asset we all have. If you aren’t going to do something …or if it is a 5 out of 10 in your mind…let it go! They will appreciate the quick decision, you will be respectful, and a group like ours will think of you first, next time… if we know exactly what you didn’t like about the project.

We try our best to have a turnaround of 3-4 days at most. After seeing as many projects come across our desk as we do, it gets pretty easy to see warning signs. I don’t know why these groups in the VC space take so long. We worked with one that took 6 months of due-diligence on one of our projects. In the end they accepted it, and then; they did nothing with it! Maybe it’s ego, maybe it’s bandwidth (their ability to take on another project). Like a kid waiting for the postman to deliver a package, trust me you aren’t doing anyone a favour. Whatever it is, I would say to have the mutual respect to do the right thing. Understand, people’s livelihoods are at stake.

Respect Blog Nov 2017 Image 3.jpgAnd it’s not just when it comes to investments. (here is where it turns into a rant…but heck it’s my blog!)

Listen up all you “Newbies” (and I won’t classify the age group, and you are exempted if you listen to Gary Vaynercuk) and take heed). The world is not about you! Everyone has hopes and dreams. You were not born and then instantly the world owes you a living! Please, and I mean please…understand that if you graduate college and come out with a general degree, to get paid $125,000 /year…you have to be worth $200,000 to your employer. It’s just the way it works. If you did get that job, your employer expects you to be there before the required time, stay as long as necessary, and as for those promised vacations, gourmet coffee, and relax pods in a tranquil room? Have the respect to understand that business is in operation to make a profit. The school I came from taught that my stress levels, comfort, and dogs belong at home.

So, in closing, and I hope I don’t get too many irate comments, have respect. It goes both ways. If you are to be somewhere at a certain time…be there. If you say I’ll know more on Monday, even if you don’t know more…let the people waiting to hear know. If you say you are going to do something, even if you change your mind…do your best to honour your commitment, If you disagree on all my points, I respect that and go write your own blog!


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