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5 Tips on how to choose a great business partner

BY Erna Basson

Having a business partner can be so rewarding for you and the company, with beneficial advantages for both parties but the crucial part is choosing the right partner. I, myself have several highly influential, well-known business partners across the world and I am very lucky enough to have great relationships with all of them.  I am very fortunate to have gained an amazing business partner just last week in one of my companies in South Africa that will see an increase in our margins by 220% - Now that is a great partnership, don’t you think


I want to share with you the 5 things I look out for before partnering with someone and you can apply this in your business partnership or even a personal relationship.  


I also treat my marriage as a business as I have an equally involved partner in my marriage.


So here goes, 5 things you should know before entering into a business partnership:


1.  Why are you looking for a business partner


This is literally the first question you need to ask yourself.  Why are you looking for a business partner?  Is it because you feel you don’t have what it takes to do something on your own (having doubt and fear), lack qualities that your business partner have or are you just looking for a business partner for funding purposes?  Any of the above reasons are 100 % correct, that is why we have business partners.  We are all human and no one is perfect and you cannot be great at everything, we all have strong and weak points and your business partner will add on what you lack and vice versa.  I always say 2 heads are much better than 1, and a good idea is only a good idea until your business partner comes up with a great idea.


2.  What role will they play


How will the business partnership work?  Are they just investors, secret partner or will they be involved?  Make sure you clear this out before entering into a partnership.  I cannot emphasize the importance of proper communication between you and your business partner.  Never assume they know what you know - assumption is the key to all fuck ups (pardon my french), never assume your partner is aware of the role he/she will be playing.  Get this cleared out from the start.  
What will your responsibilities be in the company and what will his/her responsibilities be in the company?


3.  What value will they add to the company


What value will your business partner bring to your partnership?


Knowledge
Skill
Funding
Resources
Database
Support


Know where your business partner fit in.  the more of the above boxes you can tick with your business partner the better.  Business is all about adding value to your customers and it should not be any different for business partners adding value to the business relationship


4.  Are you on the same mindset level


This is crucial!  Are you on the same mindset level?  Do you both want to be successful?  Do you have the same work ethic?


5.  Do you have the same expectations for the vision and outcome for the company?


Do you both share the same vision for the company?  Are you expectations the same for the business partnership?  This just goes back to proper communication.  The more you communicate the less assumptions there will be and this will result into less fuck ups right (again pardon the french, but I call it how it is)


In conclusion, if you go through these 5 steps you are in for a rewardable business partnership

 

Erna Basson & business partner Ndaba Mandela

 August 08, 2017
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