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A recent event prompted me to write this article. A client decided to accept a partner into his company. Up to this time our client was the sole owner. 

I had heard many reports about the new partner, long before he joined the client’s company. The reports were that he was a dominant and aggressive manager and his prior employees were often fearful and worried. He solved personnel problems by firing people, never with training or consultation. He had little consideration or empathy for the other party when negotiating business agreements. Other reports told of his frequent extra-marital relationships despite being a father to several children. I told the client, very definitely, not to enter into partnership with the man. My advice was not accepted, and our consulting services terminated. 

Several weeks later the client called with an alarming story. His company usually spent $2000 to $3000 per week on Google Adwords and more on other promotion. The day the new partner started customer calls from the Adwords and other promotion stopped. The phones fell instantly silent. The partner said to the owner, “How could this happen? What have you done!!!” he was enraged when he was told by the owner, “No pay this week as we have so few jobs and very low income” The phone silence continued for two weeks, when our client came to his senses and ended the partnership saying, “That’s it. Go!”

The following day, with nothing else changed, the phones rang hot. Ten times more requests for service arrived in that one day than could be delivered. Customer calls continued at a high volume over many days then settled down to the number that was usual before the partner arrived. 

My client then contacted the company accountant to tell him the partnership was over. The accountant noted this then sent the client an invoice for $6500 for data and information services the partner had requested from the accountant to know if he should enter into the partnership. He fully expected the company to pay for this. Now that he is gone it is yet another bill our client has to pay.

We are once again servicing this company after our client called with this sad story. He began with, “Please don’t say, ‘I told you so’, but….”

Some people have an amazing ability to stop inflow of communications and therefore, to stop the inflow of money. This ability is closely linked to the kind of ethical standards they hold. They may be able to demand money by dominance and force and may even become wealthy in this way. But such people are very dangerous when associated with an ethical company, one that operates on the principle that an excellent product or service, delivered rapidly and efficiently, is the route to success. In this case we have an unethical person in an ethical company. That is a big problem, especially if the person is in a senior position. The two opposing standards collide with result that activity stops, and money does not arrive. 

Peter Simpson