Note: I began this short series on Starting Your Own Business and I appreciate the comments it generated. My friends who own their own business gave great advice beyond what I offered!
If you own your own business, friends (and family) actually seem to believe that you now owe them a favor. They come to you asking for help in your line of work, and there is often an unspoken expectation that you will:
- Give them a discount
- Give them better work or effort
- Give them faster results
- Allow them to pay slower
I don’t know where it comes from, but friends (and family) somehow believe that their relationship with you, they should get a better “deal”. Even worse: If you hire them, they think they can work less and get paid more. They expect favors…which results in money transferred from your pocket to theirs.
So, beware that you do not carry the same hidden expectations of friends and family. They deserve the same level of excellence (and the same pricing) as you would give to any other customer. Do not fall into the trap of thinking that friends and family are your “easy” customers who don’t get your full attention.
Here is an interesting corollary principle: Some people believe the same of “Christian” business owners. Some believe that Christians should give discounts because of their faith. I can’t tell you how many times I heard someone look at their bill and exclaim “but I thought he was a Christian?”
Business is not charity. Business is a transaction. If you want to give someone charity, then give them your money…but don’t let the transaction suffer.
Thanks for listening.