Business Partnerships

One life lesson I learned long ago is that until you know how someone is about money, you really don’t know how that person is. Money has the ability to reflect the best and worst in people. We all know it but somehow when it comes to partnerships of all kinds we all too often play people pleasers numbed by the novocaine of looking bad.

There are 3 types of potential partners one takes on in business. They are as follows.

  • Friend
  • Family Member
  • Business Associate that has become a friend of sorts.

The most common reason one brings a business partner aboard is the worst reason to do so. The most common reason is to “share the fear”. As a business coach I have found this to be the case nearly every time someone wanted to bring on a partner. Whether they knew it or not, they wanted what I call “a liability sponge”. The logical follow is that once the fear has worn thin, the partners begin to compare who is doing more or less than the other, who is taking more time off, who comes in late and the list goes on. The partnership begins to look like 70% of the marriages – they begin to look really dysfunctional and often end in divorce. Unfortunately in most cases (or fortunately just the same) there was no vow taken before God where the partners stated “til death do us part”. There is only money holding them together.

If you do bring a partner on, be comfortable knowing that you could lose them as a friend or family member forever — long before death does you part. For me, all the money in the world can’t replace certain relationships in my life. Despite many temptations to mix business with pleasure I know better. I know better because I’ve done it and I’ve even lost a couple of friends in the process. Here is the good news. If you are going to bring a partner aboard in your new or existing business my article to follow, Business Partnerships – Doing it Right, will help you make it as painless as possible.