Apr 19 2011

Business Hockey?

Is your business on thin ice, 


racing around in circles,


bashing competitors in the


teeth, and getting nowhere?



If your answer to the headline question above is “YES,” then it’s probably time to pack up your puck and hang up your skates, or look for a different sport for your business.

The problem is not how you got where you are, nor is it –at this point– knowing where you’re going. Like extracting an accident victim from under a car or caved-in roof, concern one needs to be: How to get yourself out.

Entrepreneurs often dig themselves into holes (especially financial ones) while they have their heads down and are charging forward trying to make their ideas work.


The tendency is to grasp desperately at the first straws offered by the first investor who comes along and seems willing to plunk down enough rolls of quarters to post bail and get the new business venture out of the penalty box. Oh, sorry, back to hockey. (I never did like fighting with sticks, and on skates no less.)

The point is that jumping at an expression of interest from a venture capitalist, who may want to own 51-75% of your business is never a good idea . . . unless you’re a serial entrepreneur and looking to get in, make a quick killing, and then get out. And even then, it may not be a wise move. S~L~O~W yourself down. This is marriage.  

Venture capital (VC) deals are particularly risky if you know down deep that the business is teetering (no, not Twitter Tweeting) on the brink of bankruptcy (which is not always evident on the surface . . . and which many entrepreneurs refuse to accept or think about even when it’s staring them in the face!). 

First off, most VC professionals don’t make a practice of investing in incipient bankruptcies, so –even though our unprofessional federal government has proven that it thinks nothing of throwing good tax-dollars after bad business operations– a floundering business startup is not likely to see any real bailout options come along.

Unless money comes from an “Angel Investor.”


An Angel Investor might be Uncle Louie or Auntie Oprah or some recently re-acquainted long-lost college or Army buddy, or a wealthy next door neighbor who’s been watching the business take over the garage and who figures he can always foreclose on your property if a loan isn’t paid, and become a serious land-owner.

Before a struggling venture surfaces long enough to search for financial relief of any kind, it makes the most sense to look first INSIDE to see if overhead and/or operations can be trimmed or scaled back first without sacrificing the essence of the business’s product or service offerings. Note the word “essence.” (“Quality” and “Value” are variables.)


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Hal@Businessworks.US or 302.933.0116

 “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance!” [Thomas Jefferson]
Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals. God Bless You.

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