True friends stick by you through thick and thin. As a “Failed Businessperson” one can really feel like a leper sometimes.
As an entrepreneur when your credit is terrible, friends from the golf club have vanished and ladies who do lunch eat without you. You may feel like a leper. An outsider. I know there were times when I did.
But if you are reading this as someone who is not a Bouncepreneur, perhaps you work for a major business or in government ask yourself how you can assist a friend going through this process.
But remember bitterness never does anyone any good. In fact it can slow your recovery. Think about friends that desert you in the following way. They are simply ignorant of modern business conditions. Society has changed. Businesses fail more and more, it is vitally important that society change it’s attitudes. Unfortunately at this time too many people associate business failure and criminality. This will change and it is a key part of our Bouncepreneurs Charter to affect a change in thinking across society.
When you get involved with Bouncepreneurs I really hope you make some friends for life. All Bouncepreneurs have lost a business. That is our common experience. And we admit it. We learn from it and share the experience “warts and all.” Our common experience is what will bring us together and make us a force for good and change not just in business, but in society too.
When you are suffering Entrepreneurial Grief I can tell you really find out who your real friends are. Seize the opportunity to identify those people you can rely on in life’s ups and downs.
Hard times will always reveal true friends. But be prepared for some real surprises. See the experience as a guide for the friendships new and old that you can rely on for the rest of your life. Without Entrepreneurial Grief you may never have had this opportunity. So see it as a blessing.
In my own Entrepreneurial Grief phase I was very, very surprised by some friends.
One of my friends I though was a brick, really let me down. As a VP in a major business he dangled some badly needed freelance work in front of me for months and then finally told me he “didn’t work with friends.” His promises of referrals to his other colleagues never materialised. There was something in his manner I could not quite work out. Then it dawned on me. As a successful entrepreneur my house and car were bigger than those he could afford on his salary. My holidays were more exotic too. I realised he was enjoying the turnabout of fortunes. He really was.
Another friend restored my confidence in people big time. I played sport with him and he had always been competitive to the point of annoyance. In post match coffees he always told me about how well he was doing. I never expected much from him. How wrong I was. He found opportunities, little jobs and projects, advice and some curries at his expense. Genuine, kindness and heartfelt support. He was a brick.
But here are some great quotes about friendship in tough times
Sometimes your circles decrease in size and increase in value.
A good friend will always believe in you – even when you don’t believe in yourself.
A good friend will speak badly to your face but never behind you back.
A friend is someone who makes it easier to believe in yourself.
A good friend always quotes Del Boy with this time next year we’ll be millionaires.