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Business partnerships are a strategic way to help grow a business. Finding the right business partner is no easy task and tempted as many might be to go with the person that looks best on paper, this isn’t the smartest decision.

A business partner should be someone that shares your values and vision. Some even say a business partner should be someone you feel comfortable inviting over for dinner at your place. In simple words, the right partner isn’t just someone who is able to land a deal or client, the right one is someone that will stick with you through upturns and downturns.

Here are 5 things to keep in mind when looking for and deciding on a business partner:

1. Friends: Though you might be tempted to have a close friend as your business partners, this isn’t always a smart decision. Though a friend is someone you can trust, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they share the same goals and vision with you. Moreover, having a friend as a business partner can be risky, especially if any personal problems find a way to affect the professional relationship.

2. Trust: Trust is a key element in any successful relationship. When considering a potential business partner, ask yourself if this is someone you can trust. Can you trust them with your personal information and bank account, can you trust they will be there even when things look complicated?

3. Trial Period: If your potential business partner is someone you haven’t previously worked with, consider doing a trial run to see how compatible you are in terms of working styles and dealing with people.

4. Strengths vs Weaknesses: Though you might be tempted to partner up with someone that is like you, consider instead looking for a partner that is somewhat opposite, at least when it comes to strength and weaknesses. If you are more of a marketing person, look for a partner that is great on the administrative side of things. Having someone that complements your professional skills can be a strategic move when growing a company.

5. Contract: No matter who you chose, make sure you both sign a contract. This is especially useful in cases where one or the other wishes to leave the company. Having a contract that details buying and selling agreements will help prevent disagreement and even lawsuits.

If you have additional questions on how to grow your business and find the right key partner, let us know!  We can help!