Value the Friendships

May 2004
by Don Tubesing

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As the end of my term as PMA president approaches, I sometimes find myself thinking about–and valuing–the many publishing colleagues who have become a significant part of my friendship network over the years. So many book people I first met 20 and 25 years ago have periodically appeared and reappeared at various events, providing us with chance encounters that have built our relationships over time. And even more significantly, so many of us have quietly shared our personal struggles and joys over a late-evening beer. What an important and unexpected resource these friendships have become in my life! So I offer these reflections on them to you, not as a sentimental farewell, but as a thoughtful challenge.

Memoirs of an Independent Isolate

Years ago I read a study in the Harvard Business Review outlining the lifestyle characteristics of the American small-business entrepreneur. Personal isolation was identified as the quality most prevalent in this group. Yep, it’s a given–create your business dream in your own mind, do the work yourself day and night to make it become real, mortgage your own house as collateral to pay for your vision, defend yourself regularly against all doubters, try to collect your receivables within 120 days, and solve the unexpected problems late at night after your assistants have all gone home for the evening. Guaranteed to produce a sense of isolation! It’s just the nature of the beast. I can’…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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