Having problems choosing a business partner? Here are 5 crucial tips to help you choose the ideal business partner.
If you’d like all 10 tips, please download the PDF from the sidebar to the right.
Take Your Time
Unless you’re in a panic for a partner, there’s no reason to speed through the process. If you take your time and weigh your options, you’ll eventually find the right person eventually. Rushing through the process without doing your due diligence in evaluating a potential partner will only hurt you and your business in the long run.
While you need to find someone you like, you also have to be critical of them in the beginning. Is the person driven? Has he had any success stories? Can he financially afford to be in a “startup” business partnership? Are there competing responsibilities?
It might seem counter-productive to discuss exit strategies when looking for a business partner, but this is a must! Both parties need to agree beforehand how they envision the partnership ending one day. For some business owners, they would love to be bought out. For others, they love their work and would never want to sell. Even a great partnership can end badly when it comes time for an exit.
Ask to get in touch with a family member, friends and past business
partners. When talking to a reference, ask about work ethic, job experience and why the person has moved on. What are her strengths? What bugs her about her current job or business?
Clearly Define Roles & Expectations
Not all of us excel at marketing, or writing, or bookkeeping, or management of employees, or the technical aspects of running a successful website. Then again, not all us enjoy those tasks either. It’s important to write out as many roles and responsibilities as you can for your business and then divide those in
a fair way. Also, make sure that the responsibilities assigned to individual partners encompass their skill set and interests. A sure-fire way to start a business partnership on the wrong foot is to “dump” the stuff you don’t want to do onto someone else. You want to enjoy your work, and you want to make sure that your partner does too.
Have you used any of these tips to find a good business partner? Do you wish you had? Do you have other tips you’d like to share with members of the SBP community? I’d love to hear any and all thoughts you have on this subject in the comments below!