Taking on a partner is a big decision. That means you get half the profit right? In business when you meet someone that you may be compatible with, is it worth the chance? My partner and I are relatively new (1 year together). I definitely have some thoughts on this subject.
Alyssa and I met in a continuing ed class. It was an early morning, all day, all weekend class.
This brings me to Rule #1 – never partner with someone who has less drive than you do. For me this has always been my first concern. If you are a hard worker and you pair yourself with a lazy/dreamer …. you’re doomed. The fact that my future partner was there seeking continuing ed along with her full time work week, told me at least a tiny bit about her drive and dedication.
Rule # 2 – Make sure your partner wants what you want, not just in the short term but most importantly the long term!! Alyssa and I can talk for hours about plans. When we first met I remember saying to her, “I’m worried about telling you my ideas because at some point your going to call me crazy”, her response, “not likely”…… YYYEEEESSSSS!! This is extremely crucial. If your goals don’t have the same size …. why bother?
Rule #3 – Communicate, communicate, communicate!!! I’ve been married a long time and I believe this is the cornerstone of ANY relationship. If you can’t be candid through the tough days (which there will be) and the high fives …. find a new partner. Don’t waste your time. If someone can’t take your candid self …. they can’t take you!
Rule #4 – Find someone who brings something to the partnership you don’t have.
My partner and I are a lot alike …. but different. I’m 6.5 years older, I’ve been an entrepreneur for many years and I’ve had more of a hard knock real life approach. She is more educated and obviously a bit younger. Her organization skills, drive and professional background has helped our business substantially. I could offer many examples but a real life example is her credit. Her credit has opened doors and catapulted our business to places that my “feast and famine” entrepreneur life would have never taken us.
Rule #5 – Do your best to slowly develop a personal relationship. If you can’t relate to the person in a social setting …. that will cause problems. My partner is much more of an introvert than I am. I’m a mom with a loud family life. It was hard for me at first to slow the social pace with her. I’m used to the all or nothing scenario. I find when I’m out with her in social settings we have a great time …. for me this is a MUST!
Rule #6 – Plan out who …. is suppose …. to do what! I have had people tell me this over and over. When I originally thought of taking on a partner I asked anyone I knew in partnerships advice. They all said …. make sure it’s clear what each person’s responsibilities are! I guess this thought goes back to the golden rule of communication. We didn’t’ do this properly in the beginning. Do this! Do this!! DO THIS!!! You may not know what you don’t know but .… you can amend your company’s plans as you go. This exercise will make you spend a ton of time talking plans out and give you a foundation to work from.
Why partnering is a good thing!!
- The shear fact of accountability can be a game changer.
- Finding a partner who has the same goals, drive, dreams (that isn’t your spouse) is priceless.
- Two heads are truly better than one. There have been many scenarios that one of us had a solution when the other one was clueless.
- Many real estate investors fail .… having someone to help with the heavy lifting and big mistakes makes the growing process palatable.
- I cherish my partnership with Alyssa. I will work hard for it and protect it. Have I had doubts? …. HECK YEAH!! That has ONLY happened when we’ve communicated less than we should have. I know she makes me a better version of my entrepreneur self. 🙂