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Going into business with my Dad

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sonny_1080

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My Dad was approached with an idea to buy a business from a friend of ours who is very familiar with the industry. My Dad asked me to research the market and let him know what I find (I’m an economics major). My Dad said that the goal is to buy this business and use the profits to buy another one and so on until we have like 5.

The guy who approached him is invaluable because he knows a lot about the industry and has a lot of connections. He’s also got experience in marketing, accounting, entrepreneurship, etc. My dad is a certified entrepreneur. He wants to do the due diligence and if everything checks out, he’ll get the loan and put the money down... then NOT do any work.

But he said he doesn’t want another partner right now? He said my job would be to keep the business running, manage the managers, be on call for any emergencies, and expand from 1 location to several, not to mention help his partner with everything he needs.

Basically, he’s buying a business with his partner (the licenses and loan will be in there names), and my job is to help build it (basically do the work for my dad alongside his partner while my dad works his day job). My dad said that once the business is built and expanding and they start taking money off the table (as opposed to reinvesting it into more locations), then I would earn “sweat equity”... whatever the F*ck that means.

That’s as far as we’ve gotten. I feel like my dad would see it disrespectful if I approached him to get written terms but I don’t want to blindly spend my time and energy doing this so that he can give me a small percentage of the company since he put up the money, or worse, just treat me like an employee. I feel like that is way too stupid, childish, and naive.

However, in our meetings thus far, he’s said that I’ll be the one running it mostly. His partner is old and is expected to die within like 5 years. Either way, I’m kind of going in blind and we’ve done all the investigating... we’re just waiting on the previous owners bank statements to verify the P&L.

We have all agreed that when it comes to making decisions, we all three have to agree... so that gave me some relief knowing ill have some control.

My dad isn’t gonna want to do any work. I know him. He just wants to put up the money, hold the license so he has to sign off on everything, point his finger when he wants to change something, and collect as big a share as possible. I don’t know if I’m being dramatic or delusional being a little afraid that he might F*ck me out of money.

Either way, I know Could learn a lot from both of these guys and apply it to my next roadmap if this one doesn’t work out.

Does anyone have any advice or experience or input on this?
 

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GIlman

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no matter who your partner is, if you are concerned about getting screwed, don’t do it. Even if your not concerned have a solid contract, even with family.

it’s even worse if the business relationship falls apart and it’s family involved, because then you have to deal with the Strain of a personal relationship too.

even though some here are critical of such things, I am a firm believer in prenups, interpersonal contracts, etc when money or assets are involved. if you can’t decide upfront how an asset should be handled if the relationship breaks down, you sure as hell won’t be able to if/when the relationship breaks down.

that applies to all relationships, business or otherwise, IMHO
 

minivanman

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Not only did I think it was a BAAAAAD idea when I read the title, I think it's a worse idea now that I read what you wrote. You AND your dad need to realize, this is business. I can see that you don't understand it is a business because you are looking at him as your dad and you don't want to disrespect him. My 17 year old grandson (who has lived with us since he was 8) has helped me through the years and I treated him like a grandson, disciplined him as a grandpa and would take things away when he was acting like an idiot while working.... you know, like a normal boy does. lol Luckily for him, it never lasted over 15 minutes..... anyway..... I told him on January 6 when he turned 17..... if you want to work part time for me, you can. I will pay you x amount, when it is time to work I must treat you like an employee, you must treat me like a boss and you must treat this as a real job. So far, it's been going good. No arguments and he has done his job 98%. It sounds to me like your dad is looking at you..... like his son..... and that will never come close to working out for you, him, the partner or the business.
 
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sonny_1080

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Not only did I think it was a BAAAAAD idea when I read the title, I think it's a worse idea now that I read what you wrote. You AND your dad need to realize, this is business. I can see that you don't understand it is a business because you are looking at him as your dad and you don't want to disrespect him. My 17 year old grandson (who has lived with us since he was 8) has helped me through the years and I treated him like a grandson, disciplined him as a grandpa and would take things away when he was acting like an idiot while working.... you know, like a normal boy does. lol Luckily for him, it never lasted over 15 minutes..... anyway..... I told him on January 6 when he turned 17..... if you want to work part time for me, you can. I will pay you x amount, when it is time to work I must treat you like an employee, you must treat me like a boss and you must treat this as a real job. So far, it's been going good. No arguments and he has done his job 98%. It sounds to me like your dad is looking at you..... like his son..... and that will never come close to working out for you, him, the partner or the business.
But damn... I gotta start somewhere and be a part of something right? At least
Not only did I think it was a BAAAAAD idea when I read the title, I think it's a worse idea now that I read what you wrote. You AND your dad need to realize, this is business. I can see that you don't understand it is a business because you are looking at him as your dad and you don't want to disrespect him. My 17 year old grandson (who has lived with us since he was 8) has helped me through the years and I treated him like a grandson, disciplined him as a grandpa and would take things away when he was acting like an idiot while working.... you know, like a normal boy does. lol Luckily for him, it never lasted over 15 minutes..... anyway..... I told him on January 6 when he turned 17..... if you want to work part time for me, you can. I will pay you x amount, when it is time to work I must treat you like an employee, you must treat me like a boss and you must treat this as a real job. So far, it's been going good. No arguments and he has done his job 98%. It sounds to me like your dad is looking at you..... like his son..... and that will never come close to working out for you, him, the partner or the business.
I need to have a conversation with him so we are on the same page about me not looking at him as my dad and he not looking at me as his son in regards to the business. I think if I’m respectful and frank about terms, then he would be receptive.

But then again, he sees everyone as his subordinate not just his son.

I think he trusts in my integrity and my ability to get in there and make plays, but at the same time he’s taking a chance on me because I’ve yet to prove myself. He’s going to wanna teach me. He isn’t gonna ruin me like other partners would.

I just need to stop being a pussy and get terms written down. If he’s got a problem with that then I’ll cross that bridge. Either way, I can learn a lot just by song a part of this and then probably take the drivers seat for my own thing if this doesn’t work out.

Any thoughts?
 

Pritesh

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Firstly, going into business with someone who has a lifetime experience with an industry/niche is invaluable and personally I think you shouldn't pass on the opportunity.

Secondly, if you're scared about getting screwed over, just talk to a lawyer explain to him your dilemma. An experienced lawyer must have past cases dealing with such a conundrum, he may even tell you how to convince your dad to be onboard signing a small contract which makes you risk-free.

Again, do not pass on this opportunity. Coming from someone who has years of experience running my own business, opportunities like these where you have a chance to start a massive business with zero financial risks to you upfront, doesn't come very easily. There is someone willing to take a chance on you (with the money they worked their life for?), there can never be a bigger opportunity than this.

Think of it like this, worst case you get kicked off but, you gain valuable experience running a business and dealing with people with zero financial risk to you. Heck if you want you can even use it in your resume, if you end up taking the other lane. Experience managing a business for at least 1+ years goes a long way in the hiring process.
 
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minivanman

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Here is the way I look at it. The odds are, it's going to end bad. You could get lucky and have it work great.... but the odds are not in your favor. You and only you will have to decide what risk you want to take when it comes to you and your dad. I am not looking at your situation from a money or business or knowledge point of view. I'm looking at it as a father/son relationship that will more than likly end bad. My dad died when I was 10 years old so there is no amount of money or lifetime experience that I would let stand in the way of my relationship if he was here. Something for you to think about. To me, would it be worth it? No. It's easy for me to sit here in my great life and say that I'd trade all of this to work at Burger King the rest of my life if I could have spent the last 44 years with my dad and had a good relationship, but I'm pretty sure if I would have had that choice..... I'd be taking your order at the drive thru.
 

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I don’t have great entrepreneurs experience, but I try to tell my view as a father:
When I had the opportunity to get a business with a partner and let my son work for me, my intentions would be:
I take the financially risk, because I have my sure income and my life is sure.
My son hasn’t built up anything jet. When he takes a risk to lose much, he can go down for life.

So I take the risk, let him work for me for a sure income, and when the business works, I ll leave it to him.
Ifit doesn’t work, he has no debts, which can ruin him.

Just a different view!?
 

Entre Eyes

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Well if you do decide to give it a go I recommend hanging out at this place when you are not here at Fastlane.


His freebies alone are like a 4 Year Business College....or better.
 

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Two things.

1) Is his business track record a good one?

2) Does he have a history of screwing people over?

If the answers are Yes and No then there is no real problem. He is probably looking to ease you into being a business owner/entrepreneur rather than work for someone else. If it is any other combination you can see that means leave it alone.

Dan
 

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I don’t know if I’m being dramatic or delusional being a little afraid that he might F*ck me out of money.
If this is your attitude going in, don't do it.

Either way, I can learn a lot just by song a part of this and then probably take the drivers seat for my own thing if this doesn’t work out.

Any thoughts?
If this is your attitude going in, then it doesn't sound like such a bad idea.

If your worst case scenario is "My Dad screwed me out if money" then this doesn't sound even remotely close to worth it.

If your worst case scenario is "I'm going to learn how to run a company and have two mentors who are going to get rich on my efforts, and this will better prepare me for my own thing." Then it doesn't sound so bad.

But I do have one other issue with this.

All three of you have to agree or the decision doesn't get made.

How do you resolve a disagreement?

Because if one of you disagrees, then nothing happens.

And in business, sometimes the worst thing that can happen is nothing.

Good business partners discuss how to resolve conflict ahead of time.
 

Kevin88660

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My Dad was approached with an idea to buy a business from a friend of ours who is very familiar with the industry. My Dad asked me to research the market and let him know what I find (I’m an economics major). My Dad said that the goal is to buy this business and use the profits to buy another one and so on until we have like 5.

The guy who approached him is invaluable because he knows a lot about the industry and has a lot of connections. He’s also got experience in marketing, accounting, entrepreneurship, etc. My dad is a certified entrepreneur. He wants to do the due diligence and if everything checks out, he’ll get the loan and put the money down... then NOT do any work.

But he said he doesn’t want another partner right now? He said my job would be to keep the business running, manage the managers, be on call for any emergencies, and expand from 1 location to several, not to mention help his partner with everything he needs.

Basically, he’s buying a business with his partner (the licenses and loan will be in there names), and my job is to help build it (basically do the work for my dad alongside his partner while my dad works his day job). My dad said that once the business is built and expanding and they start taking money off the table (as opposed to reinvesting it into more locations), then I would earn “sweat equity”... whatever the F*ck that means.

That’s as far as we’ve gotten. I feel like my dad would see it disrespectful if I approached him to get written terms but I don’t want to blindly spend my time and energy doing this so that he can give me a small percentage of the company since he put up the money, or worse, just treat me like an employee. I feel like that is way too stupid, childish, and naive.

However, in our meetings thus far, he’s said that I’ll be the one running it mostly. His partner is old and is expected to die within like 5 years. Either way, I’m kind of going in blind and we’ve done all the investigating... we’re just waiting on the previous owners bank statements to verify the P&L.

We have all agreed that when it comes to making decisions, we all three have to agree... so that gave me some relief knowing ill have some control.

My dad isn’t gonna want to do any work. I know him. He just wants to put up the money, hold the license so he has to sign off on everything, point his finger when he wants to change something, and collect as big a share as possible. I don’t know if I’m being dramatic or delusional being a little afraid that he might F*ck me out of money.

Either way, I know Could learn a lot from both of these guys and apply it to my next roadmap if this one doesn’t work out.

Does anyone have any advice or experience or input on this?
The risk depends on how you get paid.

When your dad and his partner “take money off the table” do you get a share?

Are you being paid a salary?

It feels like that the answers were “yes” but you wish to get more affirmative answers.

Trust works in both ways. Obviously your dad trusts you. There are many ways that you as the in charge could “steal” money under the facade of business operations.

I don't know your dad but my gut instinct is that if he trusts you and have more to lose why would you not trust him.

I would be more concerned about other parties.

As you mentioned that your dad’s business partner is about to “die in five years” this will create trouble if in the future the family members of that partner want to liquidate the business and kill the goose that lays the egg. Is your dad going to be a majority share holder?

I assume your dad is a high net worth individual. Do you have any other sibling? You dad could be “secretly” laying plans for inheritance planning. If this thing works you get the company and your younger sibling gets the liquid assets..Watch out for that.
 

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SparksCW

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So many red flags!

You say your dad is a "certified entrepreneur" but also say he has a day job??

I worked for my dad for 14 years, I learnt a lot but I owned nothing and was under paid. I left with nothing but the knowledge and skills I'd learnt from grafting for him.

The "carrot on the stick" was always there, own the business one day... but when is one day? Seems it'd have been when he died then I'd own half of it as would my evil stepmum. Yeah, no thanks!

To me it sounds like your dad wants you to do all the work for none of the reward.

You'll work for years under paid with all the stress and responsibility, then when you finally ask for a share or more money there'll be a list of excuses/reasons why you can't, another carrot will be dangled to keep you interested until you ask again.

From personal experience I'd steer well clear, especially if you value your father/son relationship.
 
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sonny_1080

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Here is the way I look at it. The odds are, it's going to end bad. You could get lucky and have it work great.... but the odds are not in your favor. You and only you will have to decide what risk you want to take when it comes to you and your dad. I am not looking at your situation from a money or business or knowledge point of view. I'm looking at it as a father/son relationship that will more than likly end bad. My dad died when I was 10 years old so there is no amount of money or lifetime experience that I would let stand in the way of my relationship if he was here. Something for you to think about. To me, would it be worth it? No. It's easy for me to sit here in my great life and say that I'd trade all of this to work at Burger King the rest of my life if I could have spent the last 44 years with my dad and had a good relationship, but I'm pretty sure if I would have had that choice..... I'd be taking your order at the drive thru.
I’m sorry to hear about tour father bro that sucks. My father and I haven’t always had the best relationship. In the last 6 years we’ve gotten immensely close. I have my fears but at the same time, Pritesh hit the nail on the head with how valuable of an opportunity this is. If not for anything but to get in the field, make connections, learn the industry, the business, etc.

Your response about your father made made me think about how many times I dreamed about going into business with mine when I was growing up. And because I’m blessed to still have a father who trusts me enough to go into business with (it wasn’t always that way), I feel I should be much more humble and grateful than entitled and controlling.

Thank you for all and specifically you minivan for being a sounding board for me
 
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sonny_1080

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Two things.

1) Is his business track record a good one?

2) Does he have a history of screwing people over?

If the answers are Yes and No then there is no real problem. He is probably looking to ease you into being a business owner/entrepreneur rather than work for someone else. If it is any other combination you can see that means leave it alone.

Dan
The answers are Yes and No... I starting to think the problem is me gentlemen. Growing up I’ve seen him go into business with people and it’s only been square business. I’ve worked for him in different ventures and I wasn’t always disappointed with what I was paid (as a kid), I was just upset that I wasn’t getting as paid as much as him and his partners. I was still fairly compensated.

I’m starting to think the problem is me.
 
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sonny_1080

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If this is your attitude going in, don't do it.



If this is your attitude going in, then it doesn't sound like such a bad idea.

If your worst case scenario is "My Dad screwed me out if money" then this doesn't sound even remotely close to worth it.

If your worst case scenario is "I'm going to learn how to run a company and have two mentors who are going to get rich on my efforts, and this will better prepare me for my own thing." Then it doesn't sound so bad.

But I do have one other issue with this.

All three of you have to agree or the decision doesn't get made.

How do you resolve a disagreement?

Because if one of you disagrees, then nothing happens.

And in business, sometimes the worst thing that can happen is nothing.

Good business partners discuss how to resolve conflict ahead of time.
Good point. My Dad says that [if all 3 of us don’t agree then it won’t happen] but I’m convinced that unless it’s a serious issue that me or our partner fervently disagrees with, we will most likely let my dad steer the ship.
 
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sonny_1080

sonny_1080

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The risk depends on how you get paid.

When your dad and his partner “take money off the table” do you get a share?

Are you being paid a salary?

It feels like that the answers were “yes” but you wish to get more affirmative answers.

Trust works in both ways. Obviously your dad trusts you. There are many ways that you as the in charge could “steal” money under the facade of business operations.

I don't know your dad but my gut instinct is that if he trusts you and have more to lose why would you not trust him.

I would be more concerned about other parties.

As you mentioned that your dad’s business partner is about to “die in five years” this will create trouble if in the future the family members of that partner want to liquidate the business and kill the goose that lays the egg. Is your dad going to be a majority share holder?

I assume your dad is a high net worth individual. Do you have any other sibling? You dad could be “secretly” laying plans for inheritance planning. If this thing works you get the company and your younger sibling gets the liquid assets..Watch out for that.
So true. He does have way more to lose than I do. Me not trusting him sounds kinda stupid when you put it that way.

I’m trust the other party. However I will bring up the other issues you raised. I’ve thought about them but have yet to discuss them.

Thank you
 
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sonny_1080

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So many red flags!

You say your dad is a "certified entrepreneur" but also say he has a day job??

I worked for my dad for 14 years, I learnt a lot but I owned nothing and was under paid. I left with nothing but the knowledge and skills I'd learnt from grafting for him.

The "carrot on the stick" was always there, own the business one day... but when is one day? Seems it'd have been when he died then I'd own half of it as would my evil stepmum. Yeah, no thanks!

To me it sounds like your dad wants you to do all the work for none of the reward.

You'll work for years under paid with all the stress and responsibility, then when you finally ask for a share or more money there'll be a list of excuses/reasons why you can't, another carrot will be dangled to keep you interested until you ask again.

From personal experience I'd steer well clear, especially if you value your father/son relationship.
I appreciate what your saying. This is my biggest fear.

Option A: let that fear put me back at square 1 with a different idea and start my execution process over.

Option B: accept that fear and roll the dice anyway. I’m grateful for the fear because it will keep my eyes open. However, IM GOING TO HELP MANAGE THE BOOKS. And if I’m not paid fairly when we take money off the table then I bounce. And ill be in a much better position to take the drivers seat than I would be if I pass on the opportunity.

Thank you for your input. However the more I ponder this the more I realize my dad and his partner are literally gifting me with a huge opportunity that would be so stupid to pass on.
 
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Entre Eyes

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Thank you for your input. However the more I ponder this the more I realize my dad and his partner are literally gifting me with a huge opportunity that would be so stupid to pass on.
I agree. If we had a wall of TV monitors of all the challenges/scenarios Online Marketers and Entrepreneurs are dealing with currently I would say yours becomes more appealing than less. :)

You have your eyes wide open going in that is obvious and a great start.

At every step just continue to seek out successful Business Owners for insights.
 

Grinder20

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My Dad was approached with an idea to buy a business from a friend of ours who is very familiar with the industry. My Dad asked me to research the market and let him know what I find (I’m an economics major). My Dad said that the goal is to buy this business and use the profits to buy another one and so on until we have like 5.

The guy who approached him is invaluable because he knows a lot about the industry and has a lot of connections. He’s also got experience in marketing, accounting, entrepreneurship, etc. My dad is a certified entrepreneur. He wants to do the due diligence and if everything checks out, he’ll get the loan and put the money down... then NOT do any work.

But he said he doesn’t want another partner right now? He said my job would be to keep the business running, manage the managers, be on call for any emergencies, and expand from 1 location to several, not to mention help his partner with everything he needs.

Basically, he’s buying a business with his partner (the licenses and loan will be in there names), and my job is to help build it (basically do the work for my dad alongside his partner while my dad works his day job). My dad said that once the business is built and expanding and they start taking money off the table (as opposed to reinvesting it into more locations), then I would earn “sweat equity”... whatever the F*ck that means.

That’s as far as we’ve gotten. I feel like my dad would see it disrespectful if I approached him to get written terms but I don’t want to blindly spend my time and energy doing this so that he can give me a small percentage of the company since he put up the money, or worse, just treat me like an employee. I feel like that is way too stupid, childish, and naive.

However, in our meetings thus far, he’s said that I’ll be the one running it mostly. His partner is old and is expected to die within like 5 years. Either way, I’m kind of going in blind and we’ve done all the investigating... we’re just waiting on the previous owners bank statements to verify the P&L.

We have all agreed that when it comes to making decisions, we all three have to agree... so that gave me some relief knowing ill have some control.

My dad isn’t gonna want to do any work. I know him. He just wants to put up the money, hold the license so he has to sign off on everything, point his finger when he wants to change something, and collect as big a share as possible. I don’t know if I’m being dramatic or delusional being a little afraid that he might F*ck me out of money.

Either way, I know Could learn a lot from both of these guys and apply it to my next roadmap if this one doesn’t work out.

Does anyone have any advice or experience or input on this?
@sonny_1080, this may sound like a great opportunity, but it's a sheep in wolves clothing.

Nothing is guaranteed in business, which is why it is so rewarding and addictive once you have successfully escaped a job. My biggest concern is you will never get that feeling because it was given to you, therefore not appreciated.

Additionally, you will be focusing the majority of your time trying to gain control over and approval of the business from your dad instead of growing the business. This will eventually end very badly for your relationship between you and your dad, giving you an unnecessary sour taste of business ownership.

If you decide go into business, do it for yourself and something you want to do and leave family out!
 

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It sounds like an opportunity to me.

I have a friend from the Netherlands that did something similar. His dad bankrolled the new biz, something to do with fruit, son worked his butt off for a few years. Now it's pretty much being handed over to the son as a really successful biz.
 

Ing

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You must know your dad!
 

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rogainer

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Could be an amazing opp depending where you're at in your life - but if you feel like your dad is going to screw you.. that would be a hard no from me dog.. because if that's your first thought, I can't imagine any part of your working relationship being positive.
 
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Could be an amazing opp depending where you're at in your life - but if you feel like your dad is going to screw you.. that would be a hard no from me dog.. because if that's your first thought, I can't imagine any part of your working relationship being positive.
It wasn’t my first thought. I was going over the CENTS formula in Unscripted and started tripping on control. Having thought about it more, I’ll have a significant influence over every decision that’s made.
 
OP
OP
sonny_1080

sonny_1080

Bronze Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2019
172
252
165
Just re-read this in Unscripted:

“Any value-adding experience is good experience.”


That settles that. Thanks @MJ DeMarco
 

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