The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten
340: Doing Business with Friends – Lessons Learned?
Aug 31, 2018
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In today’s episode of The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about a favorite topic of Hiten - doing business with friends.

Doing business with a friend can be a tricky one. If it’s not managed properly, you could end up with ruined relationships or worse, a failed business.

In to this week’s episode, Steli and Hiten share their thoughts on what you should do if you want to do business with a friend, how to manage the relationship so that you don't ruin it and much more.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About today’s topic.

01:13 Hiten’s reaction when Steli suggested this topic.

02:33 A lesson Steli learned recently.

04:48 How Steli improved his business relationship with his friend.

03:53 Why you need to make time for both business and friendly relationships.

07:33 Why you have to be willing to talk.

07:45 Why friends don’t make good business partners.

08:21 The number one mistake to avoid when you do business with friends.

08:38 Why nothing should be too small to bring up.

10:36 Why discipline is so important when you work with friends.

3 Key Points:

Eventually, work took over and it was the only thing we were talking about.
Friends don’t make good business partners.
When you work with friends, you have to be willing to talk


Steli Efti: Hey everybody this is Steli Efti.



Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah. Today on The StartUp Chat we're gonna talk about one of my favorite topics, doing business with friends. So Steli, have you ever done business with a friend?



Steli Efti: The question is, have I ever done business with somebody who's not a friend? And the answer to that question is-



Hiten Shah: Oh wow!



Steli Efti: It's been a long time. It has been a long time.



Hiten Shah: Oh wow! Wow.



Steli Efti: Yes, yes.



Hiten Shah: Okay, okay. Alright, it's like that. Okay well like okay. I do business with friends as well. I'm not sure if I haven't, yeah I guess I've always done business with friends or family which is a whole other thing too. Friends and family, let's do business with friends and family, let's tell people what they need to know. What do they need to know Steli, what do they need to know?



Steli Efti: First, they need to know what's not recorded, which was your reaction when I suggested this topic which it's breaking my heart I don't record everything we say. Usually I just, usually it's a little bit of background for the long term listeners that might care. Usually we get on these calls, its really every episode is raw recorded first cut, there's no real edits. We record our first thoughts, the conversation is really raw, the way it happens. I suggest a few topics and 99% of the time Hiten just goes, "Yeah let's rock and roll." On this one I said, "You know doing business with friends lesson learned," and there was a pause and then Hiten said, "Yeah, fuck." I was like, "Shit, I wish I had this on," his reaction was so beautiful. And this single word which is why I love the word fuck so much, has so many meanings at once. It was beautiful, it was heartbreak, it was all kinds of things. So I think this is gonna be a rich and beautiful little episode. Here's the thing, there's a lot of lessons that we've talked about that we might repeat here quickly that are just lessons of life and lessons of how to deal with human relationships that apply in all cases and especially in the ones with doing business with friends. I'll say one thing and then we'll spit bong and go back and forth maybe. One lesson that I've learned recently that has been a new one, I can go back to the old lessons that I think are fundamental basic comm...

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