Partnerships are a big part of life. In their personal lives, most people look for a partner with whom they can share everything, good and bad, and rely on for support and encouragement. In their professional lives, not all business owners may be looking for a business partner to go in on their business with, but they still form partnerships in various other ways.
For example, as Instagram has reached over one billion monthly active users and opened up a lot of opportunity for influencers, more and more businesses have partnered with influencers, and 92 percent of businesses firmly believe that influencer marketing is effective. Additionally, businesses partner with other businesses, whether it be to create a new product, create a package deal, or in a customer/supplier type of relationship.
Unfortunately, not all partnerships work out well, and when it comes to business, that can end up costing you money on top of the other problems it can cause. And, although there are tools you can use to make short URLs for affiliate marketing, to do your taxes, or to take care of various other aspects of business, there is, unfortunately, no tool that you can use to help you pick the perfect business partner in whatever sense. So, although it is left to you, logic, and sometimes your gut feel to determine who would be a good fit for a business partnership, there are certain things and traits you can look for that can help you make a better, smarter decision.
Look for Someone with Relevant Experience and Skills
Having a business partner with experience and skills can be greatly beneficial to your business, as long as their skills and experience are relevant, that is. Even if you’re not looking for a business partner but are looking for more of an influencer, their skills and experience come into play. For example, as experienced and skilled as someone may be in the restaurant industry, that doesn’t necessarily help you in the clothing and fashion industry, or just because an influencer in the home décor business has plenty of followers doesn’t mean they will be the best fit for your pest control business.
Look for Someone Who has Financial Stability
Cash flow problems are the reason that 29 percent of startups fail, so when looking for a business partner, you’ll definitely want to consider their financial stability. Even if they bring skills and experience to the table, if they are unable to manage money well or spend it faster than it can come in, then they may not be the best fit for you. You don’t need to find a partner who has never had any money troubles at all, but the ability to create and stick to a budget as well as the ability to save and spend wisely goes a long way when it comes to running a business.
Look for Someone Who is Trustworthy and Reliable
There are plenty of people out there who are all too happy to take advantage of every situation they can, even if it may not be moral or ethical. There are also plenty of people who will over promise and under deliver, leaving those they work within a tough spot. Those types of people are not the types of people you want to partner with when looking for a business partner. You should look for someone who is trustworthy and will stick to the values and goals you have set, and who is reliable and will come through on their promises no matter how hard it may be.
Look for Someone Who’s Not Afraid to Disagree (in a Professional Way)
It may be tempting to find a business partner who totally agrees with you and will do whatever it is you want to, but if you do, you’ll be stunting your business. Disagreements are healthy and beneficial and can help you keep perspective. If you can find a business partner who isn’t afraid to disagree with you and let you know it, (but do it in a healthy and professional way), then you will very likely be able to watch your business grow and thrive into what you want it to be.
Look for Someone who Maintains Balance in Their Life
Balance is everything, but when you run a business, it can be easy to lose that balance since you are always working or always have working on the brain. In fact, 66 percent of full-time employees say that they don’t believe they have a work-life balance. While there may be times that you have to work more than others, it’s important to ensure that you are still taking time for yourself and your family, and if you’re looking for a business partner, you’ll want to find someone who understands and tries to maintain balance as well. If your partner isn’t able to keep things well balanced, you won’t have the support you need to keep your balance either.
Business partnerships can be incredibly fruitful and rewarding, but if you don’t find the right partner, they can be a downright nightmare. While there’s no way to guarantee you’ll find the right business partner, looking for qualities like the ability to maintain balance, financial stability, and other listed above will help you ensure that you can find the business partner who’s best for you and your company.
What other qualities do you look for in a business partner?