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SWe Work – don’t be a schmuck.

Its been a year for IPO’s. Several. without the vestige of a chance to make a profit have nonetheless propered their rock star owners and advisors alike. In many cases the stock has subsequently collapsed, the rest will surely follow in due time. Now comes the weeping and wailing about the plight of the lovely but dicarded staff and their families.

Well here’s the thing. I have worked with few boards that have a worked out multi dimensional view beyond beating the nest Q forecast. Certainly no one on Wall street is interested in anything but beating those forecasts. As regulations are twittered into a new state of disregard  so this trend will be exacerbated.

Lurking round every corner will be the next ctastrophically inappropriate stock offering. It could be Aramco, desperately trying to maximise cash for a product that, like tobacco, has no positive relevance to the future. It could be the next Uber; it might be the next clever analysis of blood.

What is the message to employees? Wake up – this is your life, your career.

  • Do your homework. Loss making companies are not good bets. Those who make excessive claims are just that – excessive.
  • See your employment as part of a commentary on you. You were impressed by the buildings, by their philanthropy. But you did not check their P&L? their levels of debt?
  • You did not even ask for their strategic Plan? But you liked the nice people.

I keep hearing how “nice” were the people at We Work. Well “nice “people don’t just finish last, they oftentimes don’t finish at all!

Caveat emptor – never doubt that in becoming an employee you are the one buying the company’s story. so don’t be a schmuck, do your home work, ask friends, talk around but don’t jump just on dreams of “nice”.

Have a good day, James  

We Work –  don’t be a schmuck.

This has been a strange year for IPO’s. Companies wihout a chance of making profits have prospered a hundred fold for their rock star leaders and their financial advisors. In many cases the public stock has then collapsed. 

Now comes the weeping and wailing about the plight of the nice discarded staff and their families.

Well here’s the thing. Few boards have a thought out multi dimensional view of their core purposes beyond meeting the next Q forecasts. No one on Wall street is interested in anything but beating those forecasts.

As regulations are twittered thoughtlessly into a new state of disregard so this trend will be exacerbated. Lurking round every corner will be the next catastrophically inappropriate offering. It could be Aramco, desperately trying to maximise cash for a product that, like tobacco, has no positive relevance to the future. It could be the next Uber. It might be the next clever way to analyse blood.

What’s the message for the putative employee? 

  • Do your homework. Loss making compananies are not good bets. Those who make excessive claims are just that – excessive.
  • See your employment as part of a commentary on your life. You were impressed by the buildings, by their philanthropy? But did you not check their P&L? their levels of debt?
  • You recognised the names on the Board. But how many had an expertese in the company’s core techologies? markets?
  • You did not even ask for the Strategic Plan? 

But you liked the “nice” people. I keep hearing how “nice” they were at We Work. Well nice people don’t just finish last – they sometimes don’t finish at all!

Caveat Emptor – never doubt in becoming an employeee you are the one buying into the company’s story. So don’t be a schmuck, do your homework, ask your friends – don’t jump just on the dreams of “nice”.

Have a good day, James