18: CONTROL Never relinquish control.

CEOs of public companies are sitting ducks…and it’s getting worse. Always remain in control — either via equity ownership or organizational bylaws. Be wary of dilution created by financing. Never sign a financial instrument with performance covenants. 10% of nothing is nothing. It’s better to have 90% of something small and valuable rather than 10% of something large and worthless. Trust your instincts. Never let “professional management” replace you or your team. Never assume you’ll be able to get the votes on your board necessary to advance your agenda. Never, ever give up control. If you lose control then read Machiavelli 10 times. Never put somebody in a position to impact your control that you do not respect.