How to Have a Successful Business Partnership

Updated on July 29th, 2019

A business partnership can be an incredible success or an unfortunate failure. What starts out as hopeful excitement can quickly turn into stress and resentment when one partner feels like they are doing the bulk of the work or reaping most of the benefits.

That said, there are many business partnerships that are successful and many ways that you can set up your partnership for success. Here are some tips if you’re considering forming a new business partnership:

Choose a Partner With a Different Skill Set Than Yours

You don’t want to choose a business partner who has similar strengths as you do. Ideally, you would each have a passion for the business but different skills to bring to the table. For example, don’t choose a partner who has a writing background when you’re already a good writer or someone with an extensive PR background if that’s your industry as well. You want to join your strengths together to create a stronger business, not one that’s too one sided.

Decide Who Will Represent the Company in the Media

Rarely will two partners sit down together for interviews or run meetings together. One person should be the figurehead of the company while the other can be the Chief Financial Officer or the back end technology expert. In most partnerships there will be someone who is more of a natural leader or more interested in being the face of the company in the media. If your partner is better suited to that than you are, then think of ways you can help. For example, maybe you’ll help pitch the company to the media while your partner will be the one actually giving quotes and interviews to the media.

Create Legal Contracts and Boundaries

It doesn’t matter if your partner is your best friend from grade school or your twin sister. Every single business partnership needs set guidelines and boundaries of what to expect. This process should never be rushed. Sit down with business coaches and business experts and read about successful partnerships. What made them that way? Discuss what will happen if you disagree. Discuss what will happen if the company runs into financial trouble. Discuss what happens if for some reason someone wants to be bought out and leave to do another job. Discuss how on what terms and how your partnership will be dissolved in this case. This will save you from signifiant headaches down the road, especially if you formalize your agreement and sign it.

Ultimately, when you start a business partnership or begin to conceptualize it, it’s hard to imagine that something might go wrong. After all, you’re excited about your upcoming business, enthusiastic about the prospects, and passionate about your cause. However, despite the excitement, it’s extremely important to make sure that you’re making a wise choice in your business partner. Think about which partner will be responsible for which activities and what will happen if one or both of you is unable to work for a period of time or can’t contribute in some way. Essentially, by being methodical about your partner selection and setting up your business, you definitely have a better chance of being successful on your next partnership venture.

Catherine Alford

Catherine Alford

Catherine Alford is a personal finance expert that enjoys helping moms find their passion for paying off debt. She wrote the book "Moms Got Money" where she helps you crush your debt and live a happier life.

About Due

Due makes it easier to retire on your terms. We give you a realistic view on exactly where you’re at financially so when you retire you know how much money you’ll get each month. Get started today.

Due Fact-Checking Standards and Processes

To ensure we’re putting out the highest content standards, we sought out the help of certified financial experts and accredited individuals to verify our advice. We also rely on them for the most up to date information and data to make sure our in-depth research has the facts right, for today… Not yesterday. Our financial expert review board allows our readers to not only trust the information they are reading but to act on it as well. Most of our authors are CFP (Certified Financial Planners) or CRPC (Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor) certified and all have college degrees. Learn more about annuities, retirement advice and take the correct steps towards financial freedom and knowing exactly where you stand today. Learn everything about our top-notch financial expert reviews below… Learn More