Some Really Dumb Business Decisions
We all make dumb decisions in our life. But most of us think business owners seem to have caught the golden ring when it comes to making smart decisions. Here are some examples showing that the smartest people on the planet are just as dumb as you and me when it comes to business decisions.
New Coke vs. Classic Coke
This is the one most of us know about. Coke changing it’s formula to compete with Pepsi’s sweeter taste back in the mid 80s. Coke was losing market share in grocery stores so they decided to change their formula and the big mistake was telling us.
Thousands of consumer calls later and “New Coke” was abandoned 87 days later.
Fox Sells “Star Wars”
In 1997 George Lucas (pictured above) bought all the rights to “Star Wars” from 20th Century Fox for $20,000. How much did that dumb decision cost Fox? The “Star Wars” franchise is worth about $30 billion dollars today, one third from merchandising alone.
Blockbuster Fails To Buy Netflix
Blockbuster, currently out of business, or almost out, declined to buy Netflix in 2000 for $50 million. Fourteen years later Netflix is worth $900 million and will dominate the Screen Actors Guild Awards this year.
George Lucas Sells Pixar
George may have made a good deal buying Star Wars but blew it selling Pixar to another pretty savvy guy — Steve Jobs in 1986. Lucasfilm dumped Pixar on Jobs for $5 million. Several “Toy Story” movies later Pixar today is worth $7.4 billion and is owned by Disney.
Apple Co-Founder Sells Shares
Chances are you never heard of Ron Wayne. Ron was one of the three co-founders of Apple Computers along with Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. Unfortunately Ron didn’t see much of a future for Apple and sold his shares in the company for $800. What would those shares be worth today? — $35 billion
Yahoo Rejects Buying Google — TWICE
Yahoo had two chances to buy Google. Once in 1997 for $1 million, and again in 2002 for $5 billion. What’s Google worth today? — $350 billion over ten times the value of Yahoo.
Decca Records Passes On An Unknown Rock Group
“Four piece groups with guitars are finished,” claimed a record executive at Decca Records after a two-hour audition by a fledgling rock group in 1962. Who was the group they passed on — The Beatles.
Some Final Thoughts
I hope none of your bad decisions cost you millions or billions. But as you can see not every company is guaranteed success and not every sale is a winner. All you can do is the best research possible and hope you are making the right move.
But in the end most of us just cross our fingers behind our backs and pray it all works out in the end.
Good luck with today’s decision making.