“Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.” ~Oprah Winfrey
I love that quote! It really says it all when it comes to business partnerships. The question is…how can you be sure you are getting the kind of partner who will take the bus with you?
Of course there are no guarantees, but there certainly are ways to increase your chance for success in selecting the right business partner. Insights 1 through 4 covered in previous blogs will help. The last lesson of “Should I or Shouldn’t I?” that I want to cover is one in which, if you played sports or a musical instrument growing up, you are already familiar with. Practice.
That’s it…practice. This is just one of the many recommendations along with the tools and how-to instructions contained in, “Creating Great Business Partnerships. A Workbook For Success”.
I am an advocate for finding ways to “test drive” the partnership. The only way to be confident that you will work well together and are aligned in your core values is to actually work together in a real-world circumstance similar to what will happen in your business partnership.
Work on a project or two together by creating a strategic alliance for a specific, yet narrow purpose. Be clear on the goals, financial investment and returns, expectations for performance and roles and responsibilities…most of the same things you need to do in legalizing a business partnership. The difference here is if it doesn’t work, the impact is limited to one project, client or product. Because both parties are clear that the purpose is to try the partnership out, an unsuccessful trial will usually end amicably.
If the trial run is successful, chances are you’ve learned more about each other than you could have in hours of conversation, will probably tweak some things based on your real world experience together to make it better, and you’re much more prepared to take the more permanent step of entering into a Partnership Agreement.
Practice by taking your business partnership for a test drive!
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