Finding a business partner or support system is a sensitive aspect of building or growing your business. A partnership means you’re committed to another person on various levels. The effects of this relationship go beyond making money; your whole dream and goals are at stake. You must think through whom you choose to share your responsibilities. On the flip side having another person or people to bounce ideas off is incredibly powerful and valuable.
For one thing, you don’t want a copy of yourself. Even though it’s tempting to work with someone who tends to agree with you, it’s a perilous approach. Here is a deeper look into why you need to partner with someone who thinks differently from you.
Better decision-making process
In business, every action is preceded by a decision. You need to weigh your options and think of how your next move will affect your company. The challenge lies in the fact that quite often there is little time to make that call. Even if you work well under pressure, it’s too easy to focus on only one aspect of a given situation. That’s where a partner with a different worldview can make a difference. They could point out things that might never occur to you, and by combining ideas, you will come up with a superior solution.
On the other hand, if you both have a similar approach, there will be nothing to counterbalance a bad idea. You may even start to feel resentment when it becomes apparent that there is no need for the other person. The key here is to purposefully look for a point of view that is not the same as yours. There’s a great article that covers this more and gives a few more success tips here at Inc.com
Conflicts create new opportunities for growth
It is a common belief that a good relationship should always feel smooth. That may not be a realistic view since business never runs along a predictable path. As a result, you are very likely to have some conflict at various points of your partnership. The good thing about conflict is that if forces you to analyze your current situation. A good business partner will confront you when something doesn’t match their expectations. Many entrepreneurs avoid working with such a partner. It’s counter-intuitive to work with someone who doesn’t share the same worldview.
Of course, you want someone who is also able to put their emotions aside. You won’t get far if all conflicts end up in angry arguments. The idea here is to have someone who can check your behavior and your decision-making process.
Co-manage strengths and weaknesses
Although it’s not always easy to admit, everyone has strengths and weaknesses. As a business owner, you should know yourself well enough to know you’re not good at everything. Some things should be handled by other people if you want to get the best results.
Perhaps the most important reason to have a business partner or a tribe of entrepreneurs in your back pocket is to cover the areas in which you’re weak. It’s inevitable that some aspects of your business will confuse you. For instance, you may be good at selling but less competent as a manager. The opposite might be true as well. You may be great at ensuring the smooth running of day-to-day tasks but fall short when it comes to dealing with new customers.
Plan ahead for a partnership
If you want to find a perfect match, it’s best that you plan. Don’t just go for people who are easily available to you. Start with building a clear picture of what you need. That way, you’ll avoid jumping into a relationship that might end up being a disaster. You could put your whole business in danger by partnering with the wrong person.
Write down the things you don’t need from a partner, to help you understand what you already bring to the table. Remember, you’re not looking for someone who is just like you. Then, make a wish list of the qualities and skills you want. Be careful here; make sure your list comprises the things you need on the decision-making level. If you could just hire someone to do a particular task, then cross it out. Even if you can’t afford an employee to handle it yet, don’t let that force you to bring on a partner. Once you know what you’re looking for you can begin your search. Feel free to test relationships with several people. You could start with minor projects to see how you get along. By working in real-life conditions, you’ll be better able to decide if someone is a good fit for you.
The folks you share your biggest dreams and goals with the need to complement your skills, character, and personality. Work on having a clear idea of what you need and don’t need. Alternatively what you can offer that person professionally. I myself have a few entrepreneur friends that are very successful on their own, however, we value our weekly or even monthly check-ins. The ideas that come to fruition on these chats I value so deeply! Take your time with this process. Your perfect tribe is out there. I’m always looking to align myself with other forwarding thinking professionals so please reach out if you’re looking to grow your business think tank 🙂