5 Actionable Tips for Choosing the Right Business Partner

Running a business solo can be difficult. In fact, a large number of today’s most successful organizations are visible products of meaningful contributions from two (or more) co-founders. But while the idea of a business partnership might sound brilliant, not everyone makes a great partner.

Your business partner can both build and ruin your business. So before you complete the paperwork and make it official, below are five tips for choosing the right business partner:

1. Choose Someone with the Right Skillset

Before deciding to partner with anyone, be sure to assess their strengths (or skills) first. A good business partner is someone whose set of skills complement yours. So if you intend to build a content marketing firm, for example, but suck at closing deals, then you should seek a partner who rocks at networking and marketing.

Successful partners are often individuals with varying strengths that blend well. So when choosing a business partner, consider going for someone with a wide range of skills. Partnerships with the right strength combination encourage the division of labor and help to speed up the growth of any business.

2. Consider Trustworthiness and Honesty

Trust remains the bedrock of successful partnerships. So, if your potential partner is someone you’re unsure will handle things while you are away — due to business, health, or personal commitments — then have a rethink.

Another key factor to consider is honesty. Partners ought to work (collectively) at their different capacities to promote the growth of a business. So when choosing a partner, avoid sticking with someone who isn’t truthful. Instead, go for someone with a track record of integrity.

3. Choose Someone Who Is Passionate, Too

When you are passionate about your work but your partner isn’t, then your business will experience decay over time. So, if you love what you do, then be sure to go for a partner who loves what they do, too.

Successful partners are often individuals ready to channel their time and resources towards the growth of a business. So when looking for a partner, it’s advisable you go with someone who will prioritize your company’s projects and work closely with you (even in discomforting situations), to ensure your business expands.

4. Do a Test Drive If You Need To

It’s always advisable you partner with someone you’ve worked with, in the past. So, in a situation when you’ve had no platform to work with a potential partner, do a test drive.

Working at non-profits and on temporary projects, for a specified period, is a great way to gather relevant information. During the time of the temporal collaboration, you can determine whether the potential partner is worth giving a pass mark, or not.

5. Choose Someone with Broad Experience

It’s unwise to have a partner who has zero knowledge of what your business is about. So when making your search, ensure you look out for someone who has experience in your business field. Or, at least, someone capable of bringing good ideas and contributions to the table.

Also, if you intend to start a business you haven’t done before, then it’s advisable you partner with someone who has. Not only does this helps to reduce your chances of failure, but it also helps to keep you away from bankruptcy.

Not everyone needs a business partner. But if you feel you need one, then the tips above can help guide your choice. Whether you intend to build a huge online business or a small roadside store, be sure you choose a partner who will help scale up your business — and not ruin it.


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