Scott Fay tells the story about the first troubled company he bought. Things were running along for a bit until the fateful Friday when his office manager said “Hey boss. I think you’re going to want to sit down.” (Words an entrepreneur never wants to hear!)
The cash position was bad. Really bad. They were overdrawn in the checking account. The gas cards were being shut off. They had no cash. They were upside down 2:1 in payables to receivables. Oh – and it was Friday, so they needed to make payroll. Today. This was devastating news.
Scott decided the only thing to do was to go borrow the money. He visited his confidant and mentor. His friend was retired, and had available cash. As he told his tale of woe, his mentor listened patiently, and asked a few questions.
When Scott was through, his friend said:
“Scott, I have the cash you think you need, but I’m not going to loan it to you. You don’t need the cash. You need this experience. 99% of leaders in your position will give up and go bankrupt. You won’t. Here’s what you need to do:
- Decide that you will win. Period.
- Create a plan to get out of this spot, then
- Drive a stake in the ground and resolve never to get to this place again.”
- Will you use this opportunity to grow in your leadership?
- Will you do the work to become the person who can lead your organization through this season?
- Who is your mentor?
- Will you listen when they give you sound advice that will be hard to hear?