Business Idea

Since a lot of you are smart and successful, perhaps you’ll serve as a brain trust.

My boss is a great guy, and we have a great relationship. We work well together and enjoy each other’s company.

Today he proposed an idea.

He wants me to sign a lifetime employment contract.

“Whoa, that’s pretty weird. Besides, lifetime employment contracts are unenforceable.”

He assured me that there is a specific lifetime employment contract that courts will enforce.

I was listening.

“Here’s the deal. I’m an honest guy, so let me make some disclosures. This business has a 50% chance of failing within 10 years. If it does fail, you’ll pay me 50% of your net worth outright. You’ll then – depending on what the judge enforcing our contract had for lunch – pay me anywhere from 40-60% of your earnings, in the form of a monthly check, each month for the next 10-20 years.”

I was really confused. But there must be an upside. Otherwise, there’s no court in the world that would enforce the contract.

“OK, I’ll promise you a substantial portion of my net worth. This must mean you’ll guarantee me future employment.”

He explained why I was wrong. “No, that’s not how this contract works. You will remain employed at-will. This means I can fire you for any reason or no reason at all. I can fire you if you bore me. I don’t even need to explain my reasons. You’ll just show up to work one day, and your stuff will be gone.”

The idea seemed off-the-wall. Is my boss going crazy?

I summed it up, “OK, so you’re saying that you guarantee nothing. You can end the relationship tomorrow. Even if you end it, and even if it’s your fault the relationship ends, I’ll still be required to pay you 50% of my net worth immediately, and then continue paying you for additional decades?”

“See, you’re a smart guy. That’s why I want you to sign the contract. A smart guy like you is more likely to end up paying me more money in the long run. You understand the contract perfectly.”

Perhaps I’m a bit dull today. There must be an upside. Otherwise, I’d be insane to enter into the agreement.

Should I sign the contract?

  • finndistan

    You forgot to mention the products of that business deal.

    How you will be deprived of their proximity while paying more than 100% of their maintenance.

    And these products can be and will be used against you, all the time while you are paying that maintenance fee.

  • Carmo

    Looking forward to showing this to my female co-workers who constantly tell me i need to settle down and get married. I wonder if they will be able to read between the lines. Doubt it.

  • Koanic

    I recommend freelancing for as many companies as possible instead.

  • Dex

    A solid example of why you only marry someone that is capable of bringing as much to the table as you. Of course, as I’m sure it the case for most of us, I have never met in my life a woman that can bring anything to the table. Other than fake tits. And even those get boring.

  • Rob

    I don’t know. I’d find out how much vacation time you get before signing anything.

  • Rollo Tomassi

    My advice, be an independent contractor for multiple companies. You can set your own hours, and determine your level of interest based on their amortization schedules. Obviously your services are in demand; why else would your employer want to consign you to exclusivity if he weren’t wary of his competition’s interest in your services?

    • tm

      @ Rollo Tomassi

      Yes, but only if you’re always wearing protection gear

  • Pingback: Marriage | SNY Ideas()

  • jon bon van dame

    Awesome Analogy for Marriage!!!! Explains it perfectly!

  • Gannicus

    You forgot to mention that your boss’ business will automatically depreciate in value yearly, at an accelerating rate of depreciation.

  • Wake


  • Bronan the Barbarian!

    Brilliant analogy. Yet, so many men still sign the contract…

  • (r)Evoluzione

    Re: your last tweet (and this post): “I’ve never seen – or even heard – of a woman improving after marriage. Have you? ”

    Yes, I’ve seen a woman improve after marriage. It’s rare, but it happes. Know what happens? I’ll give you a hint: It starts with an H and ends in -ypergamy.

    In every case I’ve seen, in marriages where the woman gets fit, gets a degree, starts a successful business, she starts to get bored, and her hubby starts to look like a loser.

    Take home lesson: If you do choose to sign the wack contract described in the post above, then you better be a hustler, with a strong drive to keep improving yourself, especially if you’re married to a type A woman.

  • samseau

    What a bargain!!!

  • Odds

    I figured it out about halfway through. LOL

  • Jesus

    don’t say no to love!

  • Obstinance Works

    And people are surprised when a contract like this ends with someone getting their face shot off?

  • unnamed

    Oh you, )@#($. I was just thinking about this kind of comparison last night and you had to go and beat me to it. Truly if work were like marriage, nobody would work, nobody. Anyway, it is a great article thanks for writing it.

  • Retry

    Not bad of a paradigm. However, it’s still too mild compared to the real thing.

    For instance, there’s the moment “I’ll falsely accuse you of horrible wrongdoings just to get more when the contract gets dissolved. You’ll probably do some jail time.”

    It’s good that the message is so clear- I think anybody can guess what the contract is a metaphor for.

  • alal

    unfortunately, guys who sign these types of contracts think (rightly or not) that they are otherwise unemployable anywhere else and that their boss has all the value while they have none.

    on the other hand, some don’t think at all, and go with it because they see all their friends and role-models in these types of deals.

  • Bigmark

    I know it is still a bad deal but you can fuck your boss…..


    Go for it man, I got a good feeling about this. Gotta trust your gut in situations like this.

  • Days of Broken Arrows

    Go with your heart.


  • Mannis syndrome

    I’m embarrassed to admit it didn’t click until I started reading the comments haha.

    Thank god I’ve never wanted to get married.

  • TransMillennium

    When I read the title I thought first that you were going to sign an editing contract for your first book about your adventures in the hustle or that you were going to open an MMA gym for skinny punksters who want to become hard.

    Then, as I started reading I thought you were going to sign a lifetime contract with the possibility of increasing your net worth, become a partner of the firm, travel around the world closing deals and playing the big game earning the big bucks. But I tend to distract myself from the reading and invent my own stories.

    Then I continued reading, ok, it’s a lifetime contract, maybe you will receive social security, dental plan, insurance and the possibility to save for your first house. My imagination continued flying.

    Then, I saw this was some kind of wicked unilateral contract. You signed, you assumed all the obligations and you could be enforced to comply when you’d stopped complying with the terms and conditions of the contract, while at the same time your boss and employer wouldn’t commit to a reciprocal obligation to you, equally enforceable by the judge.

    This is not a laboral contract, this is an slavery contract.

    • Danger & Play Blog

      Slavery contract is exactly right.

  • Ben

    Damn clever mike, you should cite this in some recent post. It’s fucking art.

    • Mike Cernovich

      I forget about this post. Thanks for reminding me!