(Michael Louie’s article first appeared as a post in Success in Succession)
Have you ever stopped to think about why you are working so hard, an existential enquiry? I know we all have continuing responsibilities: family, employees, customers, suppliers. All are important and all, hopefully for you, are assisting you in creating wealth, especially family as they can provide the moral support and accountability that others may not always be able to provide. So, back to the question, why are you working so hard?
This question arose recently when I was discussing the longer term views with a friend who recently had enjoyed a number of very successful transactions from which his net worth multiplied four fold, virtually in a couple of years. He is very fortunate and understands that he did not do this alone. He did not really have an answer for why he was doing what he was doing, other than now that he had significant net worth, he was keeping score. For him, the goal is winning.
He asked me, why I do what I do? That really made me pause. Then it was clear, I was working so hard to make something for my future generations.
With the perspective of benefiting future generations, perhaps that has shaped the way of doing business, so that decisions are made, often with the long term in mind. Some thoughts and takeaways:
- Business and transactions are focused on profitability
- In addition to profit, business is about long-term relationships
- Most importantly, business, like life, is about the journey as well. Hopefully each interaction and transaction leaves me more knowledgeable, perhaps wiser.
So, I ask the question again, why are you working so hard? The question of why is one not often asked.
Learn, think, apply!