A True MH Story.
An independent contractor was working for a multi-state company (MSC). The Contractor did good work, the MSC’s president, key staff, plus rank and file praised him publicly and privately. A payment (bonus) – part of a written agreement – was coming due to the Contractor, a 5 figure one, which would be the first of many. The principle/CEO of the MSC decided not to pay, and threatened legal Consequences for the Consultant if he tried to collect.
As the MSC had attorneys and deep pockets, what was the Contractor to do? All direct appeals to the MSC were met with deaf ears.
In sharing this story and what follows, I’m not taking sides. Nor is this story necessarily praising or condemning either party, both of whom I know personally.
With the odds stacked against the respected Contractor, he creatively decided to turn his disadvantages to his benefit. The Contractor interviewed some law firms, and because the Contractor had good records and could prove performance and good reviews from the MSC, he found an attorney willing to take his case on contingency.
First a demand letter, then the suit. After the normal pre-trial activities, after several months of depositions and related discovery, once the MSC realized they’d lose, they settled. The MSC paid more in attorneys fees, lost time – plus the settlement than the amount – far more than they tried to withhold from the Contractor. Plus, they obviously now felt they could no longer could turn to the Contractor for future, useful services.
The Contractor used jujitsu, turning the ‘stronger’ and ‘larger’ MSC’s “advantages” into disadvantages.
When you face a problem, step back. Think things through. Often you can turn the force of a challenge – or even an unjust attack – into an advantage. ##