- Sophie Clifford Eva Edel
Helping founders leave each other elegantly: a case study in facilitated conversation
you had a shared dream as co-founders. it's not worked out and it's painful. how do you unravel your partnership without tearing each other apart? we at the resolution pod have helped partners do. just that. here is one story.
Two founders had decided to end their partnership. Trust had broken down between them. One felt she had essentially carried the other for the past couple of years. The other felt unfairly judged, as though nothing she did was ever good enough in the eyes of her co-founder. Communication between them was nearly impossible and yet there were a load of decisions to make over the company's assets and liabilities (would one of them take the company over or would they dissolve it? who would be able to use the IP they had created going forward? who would be responsible for which practical steps necessary for the dissolution?).
How we resolved it.
We met with them separately - understanding their perspectives on the past, the issues that needed resolving, the outcome they hoped for and the one they could live with. We then brought them into a room in which we had visually presented the key outcome they wanted and all the issues we needed to resolve in this one session. We facilitated the discussion - in their dynamic one was susceptible to just reluctantly agree to anything without having really expressed her needs. So we ensured nothing was left unsaid and what was said was presented constructively. They came to an agreement.
What they felt:
gratitude. hugely relieved. positive.