Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Moving the (million $) mountain

mountains Arrived back in Maastricht on Monday, but immediately plunged into a week of work, prioritizing a few big jobs ahead of the social networks.  It’s paid some dividends, a couple of big jobs are done.

An elephant was the “Pitch and Prospectus” to raise money for a client. It’s the final push to get their product to market, and a clear and compelling presentation of the business prospects and needs is crucial.  They’ve agreed on the “80% draft”, a version that’s good enough for others to critique it, and I’ve transitioned from writing, illustrating, and formatting to making calls and sending e-mails to initiate the outside reviews among some VC friends.  We’ll see if we have a fundable proposition by next week.

I remember a business class where the instructor asked whether we would take his “Million Dollar Deal”.  Suppose he asked for a year of loyal servitude: on call 24/7, ready do whatever he needed (nothing illegal,  but hard work).  At the end of the year, he would pay out 1 million dollars.  Would you take it?

Absolutley.  He argued that it was a bad bargain: health, family, friendships, outside interests would all suffer.  But it’s a million dollars! Think, for one moment, of the real costs.  But…but…

I’m feeling a bit like that now: there are lots of payoffs implicit in getting the client’s company funded, completed, and exited.  But my real costs are also very high.  So, turning back to the New Year’s touchstone: keep it all in perspective, and life in balance.

And, as Felix Dennis notes, even a million dollars may only make people “comfortably poor” these days. 

2 comments:

Textual Healer said...

Felix Dennis- he was once an editor of OZ - a magazine that tried to overthrow the establishment. How depressing to read to read that he has nothing more on his mind than filthy lucre. Another counter cultural icon who sold out to Babylon.And worse still he comes from the same town as me.

Dave Hampton said...

it's always interesting to see how people evolve...I'm not sure if they selll out or just get older and more settled. Sometimes I feel the same way when people reconnect through a social networking site. At first it's a bundle of happy memories, but as I follow their updates and activities, sometimes I wonder what happened between then and now to explain their new outlook on life.