When you’re starting or growing a business, it may be useful to add another person’s expertise to your own in order to reach your goals faster and more easily. Partnering with someone else can increase your chances of success and help you leverage your time and resources more effectively. Here are four tips you should know when you’re looking for or considering a partner in your business.
Choose a Partner with Different Skills
When you partner with someone, you want to avoid the trap of choosing someone who’s too much like yourself in terms of skills and abilities. If you do this, you’ll be missing a valuable opportunity to bring new perspectives into your business’ leadership. Instead, try to find someone who knows things you don’t, as this will give both of you the opportunity to learn from and grow with each other.
Don’t Pick Relatives
Though there are many small family businesses out there, the risks of going into business with a relative often outweigh the potential rewards. If things turn sour, an important personal relationship can be damaged forever. Crucial though your business can be in your life, it isn’t worth starting long-term family tensions over.
Establish Your Goals at the Outset
When you’re starting a business with someone or bringing a partner in, it’s important that both of you share a similar vision for the business. If you want to stay small and local but have a partner with global visions, it’s unlikely that you will be able to have a fruitful partnership in the long term. Make sure you are both on the same page as far as major goals go, and you’ll be able to ensure you’re both working toward the same things.
Be Prepared for the Worst
At the outset of a new partnership, it can often seem difficult to imagine your partner cheating or shortchanging you. However, in business, such things happen more often than you might think. The best way to protect yourself against this problem is to ensure that you and your partner have a very clear and precise contract in place that covers the handling of future disputes related to the business. You should also retain the services of a reputable business lawyer in the event of any incidents between you and your partner. Navigating business law and understanding your rights will be far easier with the help of a professional.
Often, taking on a partner can be the best way to start or expand your entrepreneurial project. Be sure to choose your business partner wisely, and you’ll be able to reap the benefits of a successful joint business venture.