People change, positions shift, priorities get re-ordered, and your co-founder just dropped ‘the big bomb’ – ‘I’m no longer interested in working with you!’
Granted, those may not have been his exact words but it still hurts anyway. In fact, it’s okay to feel confused and angry, especially if you believed you were building a life-long partnership. However, it’s time you got your acts together because the business will not run itself!
Here are 3 steps to seamlessly handling the ‘exit’
Outsource the extra workload
Do you lack the time, resources, and expertise to properly manage the duties formerly performed by your co-founder? Don’t get tempted to hire full-time employees to handle them. Rather, outsource the duties to expert freelancers/part-time employees who will give you a run for your money.
Review and negotiate the exit clause
Schedule a meeting to review and negotiate the exit clause with your co-founder. If you think it’s something you can’t handle alone, get a legal adviser and your board of trustees involved. Decide on whether or not to buy out the co-founder, let him continue as a (silent) partner, etc.
Update your business plan
Once you’ve activated the exit clause of your business plan, you can no longer use it as a blue print to run the business anymore. Take that business plan back to the draw and start updating it to fit the current realities your business is dealing with.
As you struggle to make sense of the ‘chaos’ created by your co-founder’s early exit, keep in mind the following in mind:
- The business is not ‘doomed to fail’ just because your co-founder no longer believes in its vision (his/her exit may turn out to be the best thing that ever happened to the business)
- Don’t be in a hurry to invite the next-interested person to join your finding team. Patiently observe and look out for those qualities that make up an excellent co-founder.
Have a profitable business day!
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You’d be glad you did!