Putting Friendship over Business
My co-founder and I have known each other for 20 years, Mobio Interactive has been around for 4 years. We’ve had a lot of flights and a lot of difficult times, but most of those happened 4 years ago. So when we started the company together, particularly when I started the company full time and quit my job. We made an agreement that the company will fail before our friendship does. We did that because we care about our friendship a lot. But now that we have been working together for 4 years and we’ve been in the startup scene and met a lot of other companies. We realized that this was a really smart thing to do for the company.
Most companies actually do fail because of disagreements between the co-founders which is something that is not going to happen with us. So that whole issue about having the company fail because we don’t agree on something or because we don’t trust each other is avoided by this promise. I don’t know if this is something other startups can do. It is pretty difficult to make that kind of commitment unless you have a long history with somebody but I think that trust is extremely important. If you don’t trust somebody then there is nothing really you can do to repair problems when they are happening.
You have to believe that your co-founder will never do you wrong. They will never stab you in the back and that belief and trust is something that you give, a decision that you make, and is something that you take away. Once you take that away from them, you’ve increased the risk that your company will fail because of a disagreement. Trust is super important. Therefore, make that decision and make that commitment then you can worry about the other things. Lastly, don’t focus on making money. Focus on solving a problem and if you solve that problem better than anybody else, the money will follow.