John Huntsman is one of the most successful businessmen in American History, making most of his money in the chemical industry. There is a famous story about his extreme integrity that surfaces often in the blog and podcast world.
In 1986, he agreed to sell a portion of one his companies for about $50 million ($100 million today) with a handshake agreement. The potential buyer did not sign a contract and proceeded with drawn out due-diligence and legal arrangements. During this period the value of the sale jumped from $50 million to $250 million (about $500 million today), and the buyer returned to Mr. Huntsman thinking he had to renegotiate b/c there was no signed contract.
Instead, Huntsman told him that the $50 million price stood b/c that was the agreement, verbal or otherwise. This story is famous and it says much about why Mr. Huntsman was so successful (who among us would or could leave $200 million on the table?). Here is link to the story: http://characterqualitystories.com/cqs/node/133
There are people in the real estate and mortgage industries who have similar reputations for extreme integrity and they are highly successful b/c of it. We of course take enormous pride in our reputation at JVM and stories like the above are part of our training program (everyone is trained and authorized to “leave money on the table” whenever integrity demands it).
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