I was thinking today about a company that used to be one of our biggest competitors, Ethos 360, and how much we can learn from a company that just plain didn’t do the right thing when exiting the industry.
You can read the story here, but basically Ethos 360 shut down in mid-October due to some disagreements in management. The company, unfortunately, did not honor contracts to complete plans, laid off all of the employees, disconnected phone lines, shut down the website, and stopped responding to emails. It’s almost like they didn’t exist.
Except they still did, or at least long enough to allegedly charge the credit cards of clients who were in the process of having their business plans developed for their final payment. Then… crickets.
To me, this is sickening. There are a number of good business planning firms out there who do good honest work. I get up every morning and make a conscious decision to make an honest living that day, working for Optimus to sign up clients for business plans and then work with those clients to give every single one the best possible chance for success. Ethos 360 took the opposite approach that October day in Portland, closing its doors, throwing loyal employees out on the street, and disrupting the dreams of a number of entrepreneurs.
We’re trying to help as best we can. We have added a page to our website to help those impacted by the closing of Ethos 360 complete with links to file a complaint with the Oregon Attorney General and the Better Business Bureau profile.
I wish I could do more. Sometimes, people make decisions that severely impact the lives of others and there just isn’t anything you can do about it. For those people, it’s just another day at the office (or lack thereof).