Sunday, September 23, 2018


Just a quick post to point out that employees don't inherit or otherwise wrestle control of businesses from their owners. Every once in a while I hear talk like this, but no matter how good an employee might be, they will not become an owner unless the owner decides to somehow sell it to them.

Most game store sales are of this variety, usually with the owner disengaging while the employee provides a certain amount of profit for a certain amount of years. If the employee founders, the owner can step back in and take over, per the stipulation of the contract. Most are likely to just shut down at that point, as they clearly have life goals that no longer align with running a store.

I'm not sure it's necessary to explain US contract law or how an LLC or corporation works to maintain control of a business, but that's where you might want to look when you're mentally voting on who should own a store. These exist to protect business owners from each other, the public, employees and anyone else who wants to have their hand in the pie (except the government). On top of these, we have partnership agreements, which add additional protections, like allowing owners a chance to grab shares before a divorced spouse has a chance to become their new partners. No where in our partnership agreement do I see the validity of game room leadership coups.

Also note that most excellent managers have seen how the sausage is made and usually have no desire to own their own store. I've offered such ownership or other attempts at retaining their talent on a couple of occasions. The community may believe they should own it, but not only is it unlikely, the candidate is not interested in the position.

Finally, my job is to create processes and procedures and hire excellent managers and employees so that they are doing most of the heavy lifting and I can do other things, like have vacations, family life, or one day retire. The more successful I become, the more my staff will shine. This is by design.

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