Business partner – One plus one equal seven
Partner in a business can be a multiplier for success.
It may be easier to work alone and be your own boss, yet having someone by your side can make your business more successful.
"Even if the chef has a good business head, his focus should be behind kitchen doors.
A business partner should take care of everything in front of the kitchen doors."
Bobby Flay (an american celebrity chef)
What should you look for in a partner?
First, one plus, must equal five or more, not two. meaning, look for a partner that together with you, can make the business grow faster. For that to happen it is recommended to look for a partner that is complementary to you.for example: If you don't feel comfortable in sales look for a partner that is good at sales. If you don’t like to manage, look for a manager.
Before signing a deal with partner, I suggest to meet few times, and discuss these issues.
Vision - Where are you taking your company? What services your offer? Which products your selling?
Core Values - Do we have the same core values?
Defined roles - Who is doing what? Who is CEO and who is CFO? Who oversees sales?... and so on. Have clear rules and stick to them. When you meet as partners then the roles are not important and vice versa.
Mediator - Have a system. What to do when you don't agree and need help. Company accountant or lawyer can be a good idea.
Exit strategy - DO you like to keep the company and have family members involved? Sell the company if a right offer is on the table? What is a rightly offer?
BMBY = Buy Me Buy You option, in case one partner wants to leave, it can avoid arguments on company value.
Veto rights - What are they? Salaries for c-level managers, new business avenues and more.
Shares split - what will be the split of the 100% existing shares. 50-50? Always look ahead toward the future when you answer this question. You take a partner to take the company together to be great.
Having a partner in a business, like in marriage, requires investing in the relationship. Not always it will be easy and yet it can help you achieve your vision faster and even enjoy life more, but you need to choose wisely.