Business is easy, people are difficult
“Business is easy, people are difficult.” – D. Trump
I read that line for the first time in a book written by Donald Trump and Robert Kiyosaki called "The Midas Touch", which was surprisingly really-really good. But when Trump said, “Business is easy, people are difficult” it really got me thinking deeply, and I realized it’s true. I’ve watched a lot of gangster flicks and the reality is, those movies never end well. It’s always some guy who’s at the top of his game and some jealous bastard that messes it all up for the guy. Or even worse, sometimes the guy messes it all up for himself.
The truth is, business is easy. It doesn’t take a genius to understand supply and demand, especially the demand part. We basically invented it from birth; demanding affection, attention, food, beverage, entertainment and then more attention. It doesn’t take an Albert Einstein to say, “Hey! I know some people that will pay me to do something that they’re already paying someone else to do.” Or to even recognize that you would pay someone to offer a certain service and can imagine that your friends and other like minded people would do the same. Even our former president George W. Bush lead two oil companies that failed terribly and he still managed to own a Major League Baseball stadium in Arlington, Texas. Did I mention he was then voted President of The United States? OK, no politics. We all know business requires a lot of hard work, dedication and sacrifice. But to come up with a good plan of action isn’t difficult, getting the right people to be involved in that plan, is the difficult part. And with the right people in play, "Touchdown!”.
If you can’t fire em’, don’t hire em’!
Who’s seen Casino? Alright, hands down. Do you remember the scene when Robert De Niro’s character fires the cowboy because he doesn’t notice that three jackpots on the same machine, back to back, isn’t luck? In fact it is improbable. The odds of hitting the jackpot one time would be 20*20*20 = 160,000:1, but three times back to back…nope, not happening. Anyway, he fires the kid and all hell breaks loose, basically because the kid was juiced in being his brother in-law was some kind of county commissioner. And though he didn’t hire the tumble weed kicker, he did fire him and I’m sure regretted it as well. Remember when you were a kid and you got to pick your basketball or football team at the playground? The cool part about starting a business is that you get to pick and choose your team. Most of us by default choose our closest friends. Which is not always a good idea, but can be. Because the truth is we all have that one friend who talks like the king of the mountain, but lives and thinks like a peasant of the valley. They always are talking about what they plan on doing, but nothing actually manifests. That guy is usually a professional coattailerwho and will want to be a part of your venture. Don’t do it. Even if he or she’s not “that guy”, if you can’t fire them don’t hire them. Like the playground pickup games, if your team consists of your buddies and your buddies suck, you all suck. The objective here is to win, so make sure to pick the best talent whether or not they’re your best friend.
A brand new hire that you found on Craigslist will see you as a visionary and will be grateful when asked to complete a task. Your buddy who has seen you scarf down half of a cheese pizza at 4 a.m. after a night of bar hopping and then bar crawling. When you ask him, why hasn’t a certain task been completed with that serious 'I'm the boss' tone, he’ll flash back to your glazed eyes and pizza stained t-shirt. As a result, he’ll take you incredibly less serious than the new hire. Even worse their perception of you and behavior towards you can alter the new hire’s, as well. The bottom line is, if you can’t see yourself handing them a pink slip, don’t hand them an application. I’ve personally fired friends before, given the chance to do it all over again, I’d still fire them. But really given a 2nd chance, I would’ve never hired them.
This isn’t a popularity contest, this is business. Hire people that are good for the job and it will make things less difficult. Because as you, I and Donald know: business is easy.