Common mistakes made in a business partnership

Why are some business partnerships such a huge success whereas some others seem to be doomed from day one itself? Having a business partner by your side when you are starting a new venture is a great idea but there are so many things to consider first. Your business partner may be your best friend or a blood relative, but when it comes to business it’s important to be honest and lay all your cards on the table. Here are some common mistakes that business partners tend to make and the ones that you should watch out for

–       Not having an agreement: Your partner may be a trustworthy person or somebody you have known for a long time, but it’s always better to put things in writing before starting a venture together. Broaching the subject may not be awkward if your business partner is an acquaintance, but it may stir some unwanted feelings of discomfort if your partner and you share a close bond. Explain to your partner that it is better to be cautious than to have regrets and disputes later if things don’t work out as planned. Why not hire a lawyer to draw up an agreement after discussing all the clauses with your partner? That way, you can also seek the advice of a reliable third party.

–       Not being honest from the beginning: Honesty is a very important quality that is a must in any partnership. If there are other business ventures which have a better scope of succeeding or if there are any problems to be handled in your joint venture, it is important that the partners find a way out of any issue together. Do not assume that taking care of a concern all by yourself means that you do not need to keep your partner informed about any remedial action taken.

–       Not dividing up responsibilities: Those business partnerships which involve each partner looking after specific aspects of the business have a higher success rate than those ventures where both partners keep interfering in each other’s work.  As long as both partners are aware about any day to day concern, dividing up business responsibilities based on each partner’s skill and area of interest is a practical solution which works. For example, if one partner has a degree in accounting, he/she can look after the financial aspect of the venture.

–       Not choosing the right partner: Choosing a partner who listens to you, who can take suggestions, shares the same goals and has similar business ambitions is important. Choose a person who you are certain will stand by you when the going gets tough and who is serious about devoting the same amount of time as you to make the venture a success.

It is important to spend at least a few months studying the feasibility of the venture that your partner and you are interested in starting. A business partnership has so many advantages to offer, but its eventual success depends entirely on the two partners alone.