When Family + Business Collide – A new born baby while running a business

In corporate world, travel, usa by Michael Michelini5 Comments

Met my good friend, Mike Andrews today, who went to Stevens Tech with me, at his company Hudson Digital Systems for internet marketing training and SEO consulting for his business. Again, trying to use public transportation has been difficult…looked to take a train to West Paterson, NJ but so many connections for only 16 miles….he ended up picking me up in Hoboken and grabbing some Mexican food.

It was great to see his operations, parents are both actively working in the office. Met with his inhouse web marketer, Nat, and used a few hours in the conference room going through marketing online.

The fascinating part to me was not my passion, internet marketing, but instead the after effects of his having a baby with his wife and starting a family. He said how much his life has changed, his eyes have opened to life in a whole new way. He loves his new addition to his family, and has put it way ahead of his current business…..making him find new ways to manage his business that has been consuming the past 5 years of his life.

We have been in touch even while I was overseas in China / Philippines, and have discussed ways I could help too. Its also especially difficult for him, because just as he is having his new baby daughter, his father, who started this family business – is coming into retirement…thus adding more stress / responsibility on his plate.

In his shoes, I wonder what I would do. Its his family business, who have put all their time and money into growing and building this business. Yet his father is the one who started it, has the sales and client relationships, now its passing on to him. And at the same time, he is in love with his wife and new baby, who demand more TLC (tender love and care) and the work is piling up.

This is one of those hard (maybe easy to some) decisions you have to make

MONEY OR LOVE / FAMILY

And it makes you think, what is life all about? He and I were driving around a bit today, and in cars seems when real stories come out. We both seem to agree money isn’t everything, and that Americans are under false sense of security with their jobs, home mortgages, nice new cars, and other possessions. Money comes and goes. So do possessions. I think they can be replaced rather easily. But life, love, family…those are things that we have to think about….can’t get time with our family back.

And this is another reason I am waiting for marriage, sure everyone says you can’t time things, and it happens when you least expect it, but….right now I have to develop business…and still “Find myself”.

Having too many choices has been confusing. I talked to my friends in China, and they are jealous of American freedom, especially mine that I utilize (As most americans don’t really appreciate/realize/use their true freedom), to go where I want to go, get loans rather easily, and do the job I want to do. In China, friends tell me they have to work a certain job in order to save money, to pay for family, to pay back debts, etc. But we have this in USA as well. ITS CALLED AN EXCUSE if you ask me.

Its hard to do what you really want to do in life. Even me now…I am hesitatnt to think I can really do what I want to do, and make money with it, for fear that it won’t make much money, or that I won’t impress my friends and family.

So back to Mike Andrews, he is a guy in a crossroads as well…..trying to live up to his family’s hopes and desires by maintaining and growing the family business, yet at the same time, in love with and wanting to spend more time and attention to, his wife and daughter.

What would you do?

  • “How much” is always just a line in the sand. With a small company in a massively competitive niche market, where do I draw the line as to how much I devote to it? I could probably work 10 hours a day 7 days a week and always feel a little behind.

    How much energy and how much more do I pour into a cause, where the industry is run by a bunch of crazies. I’ve had meetings with a cursing monstrosity who was literally bleeding/gushing out of the back of his skull, but his staff was too scared of him to point it out (and I was just hoping he’d drop dead). I’ve had PIs from an angry competitor dig up everything about me (my old creative writing online journal, my entire employment history, activities from my fraternities, meetings/conversations I’ve had); then the people who hired them melded dispersed heavy fiction throughout the facts and created a blog from a fake customer “exposing” me and then sending out the fabricated defamation to the prominent industry big wigs and company owners. They had to make up quite a lot since I happen to be an upstanding guy who’s never engaged in any type of questionable behavior (to the point where I’m undoubtedly boring). There is a competitor using the “A” from Andrews in their company name, in the face of a separation agreement that prohibits them from doing so, back from when my father and these other guys worked together a long time ago before splitting.

    Most of the competitors create false comparison guides and undermine my company’s products by making up specifications. They also made up and continue to make up incidents about our equipment being removed from sites to close sales in competitive situation, unable to stand on the merits of their own products. Some industry snake took our proposal/quotation templates and was selling a competing equipment under our name, capitalizing on our reputation, using our name/credentials/references (and just changing the documented phone number of our business to his cell phone).

    The list of insanity goes on, but I only have time to write so much. I have to constantly defend myself, my business, my products, and in one case, my family. What do you do when the competitors have no morals, no ethics, no lines they aren’t willing to cross? You would think I’m part of some top secret military arms deal out of a movie or massive banking conspiracy…but no….I sell veterinary x-ray equipment so a doctor can look at your dog and see where Fido’s leg is broken. So why are people so crazy in this industry? Because the commission on a sale might be a little higher than in the auto-industry, and people/companies live sale to sale and can’t bear the thought of a loss. You should see some of these “big shots” at conferences…it’s almost hilarious to see incredibly sized egos on people with such limited skill sets.

    I hold myself and my company to a high set of ethics and practices…and it costs us sales on a daily basis. We are relatively small, so as we “just do our thing” and “take the high road” we are effectively spinning our tires ad nauseam with very little travel. Just an endless battle against people who have no significance to me, while detracting from quality time with those I do care about.

    Right now, this business is what I know exceptionally well. What I do might one day provide a great payoff for my children. But will my wife and children be happy with me while I subject myself to unnecessary torture, and actually worry about their well being since I can’t be certain a competitor won’t actually go too far? Luckily, if necessary, my skills are transferable and I’m confident of my capabilities. Most of the individuals in my industry are stuck; they’re scared, not too bright, etc, so they circulate among the companies creating an atmosphere of stagnation and stunted progression. A lot of them have money, or are backed by companies with money, and continue to spend their way out lawsuits, angry clients, bait and switch tactics, and more.

    What’s even more annoying, is I know Mike’s blog post and my comment will be read by my competition, and circulated. They have found online content far more obscure than this. It’s sad, but fear, pride, and desperation have driven people to things worse than habitual lying and commercial voyeurism.

    I could go on about this forever, but I think the above is plenty, probably too much.

  • Whoa, this is definitely the longest blog comment I have ever seen 😉

    You are scaring me, maybe not your competitors will come after me!!! jeez, I have not heard this before in other industries….i did have a “troll” on this blog a while ago with a fake name leaving negative comments on almost every post…..I tracked it down to a competitor of the electrapour product and he was angry about some marketing materials verbiage….

    But yes I guess you seem to have it worse……but your customer must understand….I mean, when I hear someone talking negatively about others…I feel they are just hiding something themselves. Its just not positive vibes….

    Hope it all works out bro….

  • Actually this will be the longest blog comment…though mostly because I copied in “parenthesis” as if I were replying to a thread. If that makes sense.

    So here goes :-p

    “Mike Says on 10-29 “How much” is always just a line in the sand. With a small company in a massively competitive niche market, where do I draw the line as to how much I devote to it? I could probably work 10 hours a day 7 days a week and always feel a little behind.

    How much energy and how much more do I pour into a cause, where the industry is run by a bunch of crazies. I’ve had meetings with a cursing monstrosity who was literally bleeding/gushing out of the back of his skull, but his staff was too scared of him to point it out (and I was just hoping he’d drop dead). I’ve had PIs from an angry competitor dig up everything about me (my old creative writing online journal, my entire employment history, activities from my fraternities, meetings/conversations I’ve had); then the people who hired them melded dispersed heavy fiction throughout the facts and created a blog from a fake customer “exposing” me and then sending out the fabricated defamation to the prominent industry big wigs and company owners. They had to make up quite a lot since I happen to be an upstanding guy who’s never engaged in any type of questionable behavior (to the point where I’m undoubtedly boring). There is a competitor using the “A” from Andrews in their company name, in the face of a separation agreement that prohibits them from doing so, back from when my father and these other guys worked together a long time ago before splitting.

    Most of the competitors create false comparison guides and undermine my company’s products by making up specifications. They also made up and continue to make up incidents about our equipment being removed from sites to close sales in competitive situation, unable to stand on the merits of their own products. Some industry snake took our proposal/quotation templates and was selling a competing equipment under our name, capitalizing on our reputation, using our name/credentials/references (and just changing the documented phone number of our business to his cell phone).

    The list of insanity goes on, but I only have time to write so much. I have to constantly defend myself, my business, my products, and in one case, my family. What do you do when the competitors have no morals, no ethics, no lines they aren’t willing to cross? You would think I’m part of some top secret military arms deal out of a movie or massive banking conspiracy…but no….I sell veterinary x-ray equipment so a doctor can look at your dog and see where Fido’s leg is broken. So why are people so crazy in this industry? Because the commission on a sale might be a little higher than in the auto-industry, and people/companies live sale to sale and can’t bear the thought of a loss. You should see some of these “big shots” at conferences…it’s almost hilarious to see incredibly sized egos on people with such limited skill sets.

    I hold myself and my company to a high set of ethics and practices…and it costs us sales on a daily basis. We are relatively small, so as we “just do our thing” and “take the high road” we are effectively spinning our tires ad nauseam with very little travel. Just an endless battle against people who have no significance to me, while detracting from quality time with those I do care about.

    Right now, this business is what I know exceptionally well. What I do might one day provide a great payoff for my children. But will my wife and children be happy with me while I subject myself to unnecessary torture, and actually worry about their well being since I can’t be certain a competitor won’t actually go too far? Luckily, if necessary, my skills are transferable and I’m confident of my capabilities. Most of the individuals in my industry are stuck; they’re scared, not too bright, etc, so they circulate among the companies creating an atmosphere of stagnation and stunted progression. A lot of them have money, or are backed by companies with money, and continue to spend their way out lawsuits, angry clients, bait and switch tactics, and more.

    What’s even more annoying, is I know Mike’s blog post and my comment will be read by my competition, and circulated. They have found online content far more obscure than this. It’s sad, but fear, pride, and desperation have driven people to things worse than habitual lying and commercial voyeurism.

    I could go on about this forever, but I think the above is plenty, probably too much.”

  • Aiya….dude I re-read it thinking you actually added your input…..

    So you have nothing to add??

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