You have dreamed of owning your own business and being your own boss since you were a child. Now — finally — your dream is about to become your reality. But you realize that you need some help in order to make your business a success. You find yourself seeking a business partner.
Before extending the offer to someone in your life, consider some of the potential benefits and downfalls you could experience if you choose the wrong person to be your business partner.
You could lose a friend
The classmate from school that became your lifelong best friend might be all wrong when it comes to the qualities that make a great partnership. His happy-go-lucky attitude and love of the easy life that makes him such a fun friend could make him a terrible choice for a business partner.
Good partners have qualities that you lack — and vice versa
If you are an idea guy with a sharp mind for numbers, you may want to seek out a more gregarious partner with a quick smile and a knack for salesmanship. That will also help the two of you get out of each other’s way and stay in your lanes.
You share the same work ethic
Ideally, both partners have the same level of commitment toward the success of the business. While some partners are “silent” and contribute only financial support, if you are looking for an active, involved partner, consider the amount of time this person has to devote to your enterprise. If they have too many other obligations that can make them lose focus on your company, they are likely not a good choice of partner for you.
They are willing to sign a detailed partnership agreement
Your business law attorney can draft a comprehensive partnership agreement that covers all contingencies, including an exit strategy for the unforeseen future. Protect yourself and your business by insisting on a signed agreement before making any partnership promises.