Recently, there was a post on LinkedIn about how for a business partnership to work 1+1 should add up to 11! That is, only if you can see yourself working together for the next 11 years should you take the risk of forming that partnership. That’s a lot of years of togetherness, almost as long as most marriages last these days!
So before committing and taking someone on board, take into consideration these 7 tips to ensure a bright future of growth and success!
Do you get a good vibe when you hang out with your prospective partner? Does he have the same ideals and values as you? Do you see yourself working with him? Do you have complimentary skill sets? Is there a general understanding and respect for each other? Ask yourself these questions and if you doubt any one of the above, it’s better to reconsider or wait it out, till you find the best fit.
When two partners come together for the first time they may have completely different expectations and outlook towards the business. It is necessary to address these expectations in the initial stages itself. For any business to work, it is critical for the partners to work together and chalk out a concrete roadmap and each must work together towards a common goal. Identify what part of the business excites each one of the partner, define a clear purpose and write out what the future of the business looks like. Use this as a reference for any activity that each member takes up.
It’s important to understand if your work style matches with that of your partner. It is necessary to have complimentary methods of decision-making so that day-to-day business can run smoothly. Many a times teams in problem partnerships don’t communicate enough and aren’t vocal about their expectation from the other. This leads to a lot of dejection and doubts about the future of the business and partnership.
No matter how close you are to your partner and how much trust you have in him, it is an absolute must to have everything agreed to and signed off on paper before starting daily transactional activities. It’s sometimes easy to overlook and many even take it for granted that the other has the same financial expectation from the relationship. And this can be the root cause for the failure of a business. All Financial dealings must be easily accessible to all partners of the business.
Vital questions like how will the profits be shared, how will you deal with initial investment, who is going to take care of the running cost of the organisation, what if there is a financial crisis, what if the company has to shut down must be addressed. These questions may seem too pessimistic to bring up in the initial stage, but it is mandatory, so as to avoid any chance of misunderstanding and suspicion.
It’s better to deal with a moment of discomfort than a lifetime of silence. There will be times when partners will disagree. However, to avoid ill-feelings, their point of view needs to be heard out and they need to be given a chance to fight their case.
Ideally, it is best to have a monthly scheduled meeting so that all partners are prepared and have a clear time to put across his thoughts.