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Friday, February 19, 2010

An Absence Explained

I’m almost as bad as Sigmund with these sudden absences. As they say, “my bad.”

What happened?

It was the Arrangement. I modified it. And it bit me. But I get ahead of myself. First I must catch you up, dear reader. So rather than going through the first three arrangements, let me start with the most recent one. The Internet one.

In late October of 2008 I embarked upon my fourth Arrangement. I mostly used Seeking Arrangement, an Internet site. I spent three months vetting hundreds of candidates down to four. I put a lot of miles on my jet. By February 2009 I tried to pick one. What happened at that point was a departure from my plans.

As I noted below, an Arrangement consists of an entrepreneur, a business plan, and an investment. It results in a contract with a term, goals, a consulting contract and scheduling commitments. That worked in my first three Arrangements. Not so this time.

This time I found out that none of the four could produce a business plan. Their personalities were entrepreneurial. That was not the problem. And they met the other criteria I had for charm, wit, looks, elegance, and so on. But their ability to focus and produce something, even a plan, was too limited. The limitations were from a lack of ability, or a lack of experience, or a lack of focus.

Of course the purpose of mentoring is to help a lack of ability, experience or focus. But I needed some baseline capability to build upon. I was not finding it.

So I modified the arrangement. I felt two of the candidates only lacked experience. So I decided to support them while they brought themselves to the point of producing a plan. I put them through school. I allowed them to have the time to develop their interests and skills to the point where a plan could be produced. So I dropped the business plan component out of the Arrangement. During the first year their focus was to be purely on studies. There would be no romantic meetings or sex. The stated goal was for one of them to move to a real Arrangement in 12 to 18 months.

Unfortunately, upon reviewing progress after six months very little was happening. So I suggested that we drop the implicit transition to an Arrangement and just complete two years support for their education. The two women were not happy with this and independently petitioned “for another chance.” This escalated to a point during the Thanksgiving holiday, shortly after my last post. Various personal dramas and other events made the situation untenable. I would not back out of the financial commitment, but I wanted out of the rest.

Modifying the Arrangement was a bad idea. Without the stability of a project, the non-traditional commitments and uncertainties brought out the worst in the participants in terms of insecurities.

My other Arrangements were so much more enjoyable that there is no comparison.

I’ll write about why.

And how I am trying things differently this time. How I will try the Asian approach. In America.


Anonymous Dale said...

So no business venture, and no sex? Isn't the point of this arrangement concept efficiency? At the moment it's looking very inefficient indeed. But looking forward to the next instalment.

2/22/2010 7:31 PM  
Anonymous Dale said...

"I spent three months vetting hundreds of candidates down to four. I put a lot of miles on my jet."

Still scratching my head over the time this must take. Isn't there an some equivalent of a recruitment consultant / headhunter? Or do you do test drives? But when I read the sugar baby bloggers, they're all adamant: no test drives! understanding is no test drives?

2/22/2010 7:36 PM  
Blogger Sam Spayed said...

Yes, it takes a lot of time. And the test drive policy seems to vary from person to person. I never expect a test drive but often they are offered. I believe the "no test drive" policy is stated by women mostly to set expectations. And so they don't feel uncomfortable that they will be perceived as prostitutes.

I am unaware of a recruiter. There are high end dating services. Oddly at least two women also volunteered to help screen for me. But I don't think they would know me well enough to do a good job.

3/27/2011 11:50 AM  

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