Business partnership is often like a marriage and with more and more people entering the world of entrepreneurship every year, this has definitely become common. Needless to say, a business partnership is one of the crucial decisions in life and deserves all the enthusiasm and expectations; ensuring that nothing goes in vain makes sense. It is extremely important to know as much as you can, about your business partner, which also includes his status, family and finance. Before you sign on that dotted line, make sure that you have all the required details that would help you measure the impact of your partnership on your business.
If you are still unsure about how you should plan things out and move ahead with it, here are top 10 questions, we suggest, you should ask before committing to your business partner. The idea is to prevent yourself from falling into any kind of trouble.
1# What do I actually need from my business partner?
It makes sense to look for business partners that bring something â€˜extra' to the table and something more than you could have imagined. Little surprise and that too on a positive note is good. If you feel you have that gene of creativity in you, then you probably require a business partner who is equally or more creative and in short, someone who is detail-oriented.
If you have good money and you want to invest it logically in your business, make sure that the person who works with has good connections, access and rapport in the market. People who are rather more shy should meet business partners who are rather more "people's persons" so that the equation can be balanced. In a nutshell, you may require someone who very well compliments your personality and skills with nothing less to compromise on.
2# What is the financial status of my potential partner?
Before you choose to get into the venture, make sure that you are aware of the financial status of the person you are going to work with, as a business partner. The financial decisions taken by people definitely shape up the future of businesses they are involved with.
3# What are the expectations of the partner regarding time?
It is extremely important for the commitment of the business partner to match with yours. Whether you are a small or a huge business, remember that even a partnership may start off well with all kinds of fun and excitement, the reality of finance will hit soon. It is exactly the time when the everyday slog begins to catch up with people involved in business. If your business partner is not as committed as you are, very soon the enthusiasm may be lost and you will see the brand going down in dust sooner than you expected.
4# Is there's something wrong with my business partner's personal life that my affect our business?
Family life can very well create distractions but we don't intend to say that a businessman should have no family responsibilities at all. Before planning a partnership, make sure that your business partner can give your business a decent time rather than feeling torn between personal and professional life. Your business partner should be able to do complete justice to the business and be in a position to provide it the time it requires without much fuss - actually! Make sure that there is nothing in their personal life that would rather force them to make business their secondary interest. If they are too occupied with family life, your business may soon be doomed.
5# Will my business partner be able to handle a tough situation?
It becomes extremely important for you to know to know how your business partner can actually handle a tough situation that may arise in business. One of the best ways to find out more on this is to track what they have been doing in the past and how they have handled their past venture. Were there any major difficulties? How did they face and overcome them? It may also come down to the character issue but you need to expose the reality, should there be a harsh one!
6# What are the questions they have for me?
You know when a candidate asks no questions in an interview, it may sound like his lack of interest. Same goes with your prospective business partners too! They should be more than willing to know everything about your reliability, expectations and even character before they can finally step down into the deal with you. There's nothing wrong with you expecting them to ask you equally tougher questions as you have for them in that initial frame of mind. When our company Rope-Barriers.com was looking for a business partner, we have asked the same question as expected the answer was far from satisfactory and so, we decided to move ahead without forming a partnership.
7# What is their standing in the community?
There are plenty of people who look like a good deal in the first look but may be, in the time to come, they will look like the toughest people to deal with. They may be tough to deal with, once they have had their foot on the floors. Make sure that you talk with their colleagues from their past venture so that you have an idea on how they are, when it comes to work. if you are looking for business partners that can bring the benefits of great connections and finance along with them, do enough research to find out whether they really can! Explore their "reach" and find out whether they can prove their worth in the time when your business requires them the most. They should, in reality, be who they look like!
8# Can they put it all into writing?
Not all business partnerships can do with only cementing a handshake, there's definitely more that should go into it. It is important to put everything on the papers as one needs to be aware of the consequences a broken partnership can bring, if expectations fail to meet. You may not be willing to give a good percentage of your business to someone who doesn't deserve it so make sure everything can go down in writing. Remember, everything is not gloomy. Get over the person before the partnership actually destroys the business.
9# Am I really in need of a business partner at the moment?
If you can get someone do something you need and expect them to do for you without actually giving them any kind of stake in your business, it is always better. Many a times, entrepreneurs get stuck up in the mere idea of working with someone they feel may prove to be of a good use to their business. However, it may not always sound like a good idea. Analyse whether you are really in need of a business partner and then decide.
10# What will I do if the partnership breaks up?
Lastly, make sure that you also envision the worst and the rough times so that you don't fall out of options when you get there. Better ask the potential business partner about his/her expectations so as to make sure that you both are not a misfit together. Get assistance from a good startup lawyer who can definitely help you work through few of those problems that are beyond control. It is always best to put up a convincing and promising framework that can help you address those unforeseen circumstances.
With these questions in mind, we believe you are all set to make business partner who can add value to the pace, growth and progress of your business. Go ahead and set the deal!