|03-19-2007, 05:15 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
relationship with my parents / business
Hi, I'd like to hear some recommendations on what to do in my situation. I usually don't try to whine like this, but I am completely out of ideas.
My dad has a software business that's been there since 10 years ago. After a great initial success, the business has been going downhill ever since. This is, I believe, primarily due to my dad's lack of business skills. He's a technical genius, but as for managing a company and making sales, there is much to improve. After hearing him explain the product and the business to me, I think there is something of value in it, but it takes business skills to convert that value into profit, and that we have not done. I tried giving some pointers, but he thinks I'm too inexperienced to help, and ignores me.
I've been studying business for awhile, and I've taken entrepreneurship classes and read books on business. I have no real-world experience, but even I can see that what my dad is doing is pretty much completely off mark. Same with how my parents control their personal finances -- they have no idea how to use debt constructively. They got burned a couple times, and they just totally stay away from it, not realizing that it was their ineptitude and not the debt itself that got them burned.
One case in point: we have a $1M office building fully paid off that's just sitting there doing nothing. Meanwhile, my mom is living in a single room apartment, working at Walmart for $8/hr, and penny-pinching her groceries, thinking she's contributing to the family. I first advised them to sell off the building completely in order to have enough money for survival and invest in the business, but in the name of "security" they totally rejected the idea. Then I advised taking out a mortgage so that you can win both ways, and they are so deathly afraid of debt that whenever I bring up the topic they stop all discussion.
We're almost out of cash for rent and food, and we are borrowing money from friends and family (and even those lifelines are drawing thin). Yet they seem so totally oblivious to the obvious solutions. They seem so stuck in their own ruts that they can't even see that they're stuck. Somehow they've gotten the idea that as long as they have one property, they're "safe" -- even when everything else falls apart. But no matter what I say, they don't believe me.
Right now I have my own apartment, and no job since I've been disinterested in working after undergoing serious spiritual work and pretty much losing what I thought was my main purpose in life (success). I can probably force myself to do something, but it seems so pointless -- if my dad would let me help him handle the business and personal finances I'm sure I can do a good job with it. It seems so ridiculous to be doing anything else, like chasing pennies while a dollar's sitting in your pocket.
They also have the mistaken notion that if I go to grad school and get a Ph.D, my life will be set. I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in formal education, but they seem intent on forcing me to go one way or another. They actually want me to go right now, even in this direst of dire situations. "We'll pay for it" -- when I don't even want to, when they don't even have the means for it, when the situation is so grave that I can't even believe this topic is coming up.
This whole thing is so absurd I'm almost convinced it's some karmic situation and maybe not something I can handle. Maybe it's best for me to get a job and handle my own life, and just let them hit bottom, who knows. But they're my family and I want to help, yet they don't seem to want me to.
Lol, there's your stereotypical dysfunctional Asian family right there The heartbreaking thing is that the problem isn't even "out there", it's so simple and close to home, and yet it seems I'm powerless over it.
|03-19-2007, 06:15 AM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2006
You can't force someone to change.
You won't be able to convince your parents with words that you might be able to manage their finances better than they can.
Why not? Because you have nothing to back up.
Imagine your own child, half your age telling you they know better than you what to do with your money. Despite having done nothing with their own, and as you say, currently unemployed.
Help your own finances first, then go back to them when they can recognise on their own that you know what you are saying.
Is your father selling software or support?
If he is selling software, you could try asking him to give you a go at selling it.
Or even better, don't tell him, do it anyway then turn around when you have results and show him.
|03-19-2007, 06:37 AM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
Thanks for the wakeup call, I didn't really want to admit those truths to myself but it's pretty clear now that you've posted them
Good idea on the selling software on my own, I was thinking the same thing but hoping it wouldn't come to that. Maybe some life lessons I'm supposed to learn here.
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