Azima Business Clinic.
What to look for in a business partner-Part 3.
The main aim of starting a business is to solve a need in the society, not to make profits. Business is something you bring into existence. You will have to nurture it to grow to full blossom. During the start up stage, the business faces a lot of challenges before it penetrate the market. These includes but not limited to marketing the products/services, raising start-up Capital, logistical Planning. The list is endless.
A good example is the 2004 study by a Bank in the U.S.A. The study revealed that up to 79 percent of small business failures cited “little/limited available capital” as one of the reasons for the business stagnation or going under.
One way to weather business challenges is by forming business partnerships. A Partnership offers the advantage of allowing the business owners to draw on the resources and expertise of each co-partners. It makes more capital available for the business thru pooling of resources. Running a partnership business is less straining as partners share responsibility in managing the business to realise its objectives.
However, choosing the person who will help you start and run a business isn’t as simple as selecting a friend you can get along with. A partner has the ability to either cause the business grow to greatness or can make the business come down. Come with me we unpack more on what to look for when searching for the ideal business partner.
In order for a partnership to do well, 90 percent depends on how the two partners are compatible. How well do you know your prospective business partners? Do you trust them? Trust is a non-negotiable quality in a business partner. Their level of integrity should be so high that you’re sure they won’t cheat or steal from you.
But it should even be deeper than that. You should be able to trust your partner’s judgement in business matters. And if you have a disagreement, you should be able to trust them to handle it maturely. Trust them to always tell you the truth even when it’s difficult, to treat everyone around them fairly, and not to start a competing business.
Experts recommend that you should know your partner for at least a year before going into business with them. Make sure that you have shared values – to help you steer the business in the right direction.
2. Complementary skills.
Being friends and trusting each other isn’t enough. Your business partner should also have skills and a personality that complements yours. For instance, in the case of Apple, Steve Jobs was the entrepreneurial visionary while Steve Wozniak was focused on creating the products.
Partners with complementary skills are more likely to build a thriving business. The broader their range of skills, the clearer their division of labour. According to Michael Gerber in his book The E-Myth, there are three key roles in every business.
There is the Entrepreneur – the creative visionary:
The Manager – the one who handles administrative roles and brings planning and order:
And the Technician – the crafts person who focuses on creating the product. Make sure that you and your partner have strengths in different areas.
3. Financial strength.
A business is fueled by money. Without this lifeblood, a business is destined to fail. As an entrepreneur, choose a business partner who has some financial muscle. Combined with yours, the capital you bring to the business will make it easier to achieve your business goals.
Before you start, agree on how much each of you will contribute as capital and what percentage of the business they own. In addition, your business partner should have good credit and proper financial management history.
Just like in the case of marriage, money is one of the root causes of business divorce. Therefore, have everything clearly stated in a signed contract agreement.
To be continued…..
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With profound respect.
Coach Maina Azimio.
ICF- Accredited Certified Professional Coach, Conference Speaker and Corporate Trainer in Wellness.
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