When you are in the business of relationships, always remain the buyer.

It doesn’t matter what type of relationship you are in; owner-employee relationships, intimate relationships, parent-child, etc. if you have the mindset of the buyer, you will do well.

Let me explain further.

From an individual standpoint, to be a buyer means you maintain certain standards for yourself. When you enter a coffee shop, as a buyer, you are asking the barista to pour you a certain standard of coffee, albeit earthy, dark, floral, etc. You, as the buyer, chose that specific venue because subconsciously, you are upholding one’s specific values surrounding your chosen coffee. If for whatever reason, that standard of coffee was not delivered as expected, you are best to throw it in a bin after leaving the shop, rather than muster through trying to drink the java juice. Why? Because if drunk, you are lowering your sense of worth. You may have lost money and time by seeking out a better cup elsewhere, but you will be a much happier and productive human, once your coffee ritual is complete and your day begins on the right foot.

From a business owner’s perspective, you want to maintain a certain standard of values when it comes to many aspects of running a business, but let’s just provide the example of customer interaction. You have likely trained your staff on how you want them to communicate with the customer. If that employee is not following the business playbook, then you, as the buyer (of your employee) must realize that the product’s standards are not in check with your own personal values, and therefore should not accept (to buy) the product (employee). This means letting go of the employee, rather than letting go of your values. As an owner this may cost you a financial loss (cost of employee search, onboarding, training, mentoring, etc.) but in the long run, you save exponentially in relieving insidious mental distress.

From a husband-wife perspective, you choose your partner (can we dare say ‘bought’) on the basis of this partner likely aligning with your own values and standards. If you feel the partner (dare I say ‘product’’) is depreciating in value, you do have the right to sell or exchange the partner for someone else who has maintained your standards throughout the partnership. This may cost you thousands of dollars in splitting of assets and lawyer fees, emotional distress, (especially if children are involved) but the gain in emotional freedom is insurmountable. And the interest gained from investing in your well-being through maintaining your values will continue to compound.