Any investment requires a certain amount of vulnerability. We leverage our decision to engage, justifying it based on reputation, effort, or expectation. It is an exercise in risk management, a determination of cost versus glory. It challenges: what blow will you be willing to absorb in order to gain (insert figure)? It stakes short term expenditure against future dividends, wagering the now against the possibility.
We all have assets. When it comes to relationships, we all are assets. We invest ourselves. We base our opinions of our partner similarly as that of where we’d place our money: on past successes, their current market value, or reliable projection data. There is a transfer of emotional capital, all limited by the quintessential factor of trust.
Return on Investment
The most shrewd investors possess something that emotions can interfere with: reasonable expectations. When they review a business model, a value proposition, or just general earnings potential, they are looking for two things (among many):
1. The proprietary nature of the business
What makes it unique? Can another rendition of it be made and compete successfully? Can it become (and remain) a market leader?
2. Where (and if) it fits in their portfolio
What you support says a great deal about who you are. They think: “What would this affiliation say about me? Does it accurately reflect what I embody?”
In any relationship, the same considerations are taken into account:
1. What is special about this person (and how do they make me feel the same)?
2. Does this person help me: a) become better b) accomplish goals (and vice versa)?
When you align yourself with the right person, it reduces conflict and the weight of the investment. A responsibility does not have to be a burden. It becomes a passion and not a chore.
It will be tested, so you must employ the right metrics and safeguards. At the end of the day (and everyday for that matter), we judge by results. In a relationship, it may not be black and white, but it might be simpler seen as black or red. There is a healthy inclination to trace the bottom line, but an anxious one too.
Sometimes you meticulously analyze your margins, sometimes you go with your gut.
Be patient, choose wisely.