The toxic business partner
We are brought up in a society that promotes trusting people and that people are good, we are taught do to others as you would have them do to you.
However, this is a very dangerous standpoint for any entrepreneur, as we live under the assumption that all people have the same virtues, values, and ethics as WE do. Therefore you walk around with this inherit, mostly unjustified, trust in the people we choose to be close to us.
We will make ourselves believe that the people we choose to be around oneself are no longer strangers but will do everything you would, they would not lie, they will work hard, they will not be selfish, and so the list can go on and on.
But be careful, this could be a very tricky and expensive mistake to any entrepreneur, as I have learned. As Malcolm Gladwell notes in his latest book “Talking to Strangers” based on various reachers, we have a likely hood of only identifying half of people lying to our faces. This is not great odds for entrepreneurs distracted by being busy trying to build a business, which means that half the people we trust will be to our detriment!
Therefore always be openminded, be careful of those people always promising a better tomorrow without any track record to back it. Be careful of those always blaming others for the failure of a transaction, be careful of those always focusing on this new deal/transaction without closing the previous deal/transaction, and be careful of those who damage or threaten existing relationships for no apparent reason.
Be careful of denial, and listen to those around you. If others questions that partner's intentions or ethics it is time you do so as a matter of urgency.
Because we are brought up on a notion of such a trusting nature, we as entrepreneurs need to be more vigilant in choosing as well as monitoring business partners, if there is every time an excuse or a different story or blaming others or focusing on this “new” deal, remember the warning of a toxic partner and start evaluating before you also stand the risk of losing everything, on the perceived concept of loyalty and honor.