Michael, the CEO, introduced himself as the owner of a successful international mining business group, a millionaire investor, and a former JPMorgan analyst. Charlie, the CTO, founded his first startup right out of college, sold one in the past few years, and worked with IBM. Both men pitched their experience to me more than their product (I later learn this is a recurring theme in investor meetings), nevertheless I thought they had a viable idea and one that I was interested in building. They told me that I would have $4M for the marketing budget and carte blanche to build my team. They seemed like veteran entrepreneurs, the kind I could trust, but one thing that would later haunt me was something Charlie said. When I asked him if hired employees were given a probationary period (it was standard for several of my past employers), he said “No, because I hire fast and fire fast.” I didn’t know which part of that sentence gave me more pause.