One of the toughest things an entrepreneur can do is work with a partner.
Because one of the big reasons we go into business is that we are marketing mavericks, rebels, or independent thinkers.
We tried working for a boss.
We tried working with others.
We gave it a go and found that it just isn’t for us.
So we hang up our shingle as an entrepreneur and venture out on our own.
It’s scary at first.
No guarantees of any money, at all, coming in.
If you were like me, you quit your job without a plan in place, just the passion to do it on your own.
The key: “on your own”.
Ultimately the day comes when a partnership comes your way.
It may be a full time, all-encompassing partnership, or it may just be on a specific project.
We think things have changed and that now we can play well with others.
Then we get head deep in our new venture, and we realize that partnerships aren’t all they are cracked up to be,
You’re still a rebel at heart – and working on your own just feels better.
Your initial dreams about being twice as productive with 2 of you quickly meets reality.
And the partnership comes to a grinding halt.
Now this doesn’t apply to every entrepreneur… not at all.
I know many people who HAVE successfully entered into thriving partnerships.
But, unfortunately, I know far more people who have tried them and couldn’t make them work.
I am one of those.
One of the big things that seems to happen near the end is a lot of finger pointing.
“You didn’t do this as we agreed” or “it’s your fault this never happened”…
…and so on.
It causes friction… and sometimes costs a friendship that existed long before the partnership.
If you are strong, you find an amicable way to part ways… and stay close friends.
But not everyone can do that…they always like to have that finger in the air and cannot move past their own half of the blame.
A partnership is a mutual agreement… meaning BOTH parties hold equal responsibility.
If it doesn’t work.. move on and maintain your dignity.
If it does… congratulations… you are in a very rare situation and can use your partnership as a powerful leverage point for your business growth.
Business partnerships CAN be instrumental to growing a small business venture fast.
Especially when each of you brings a different skill set to the table.
But, and this is the main point of this article, make sure you are ready for a partnership and all the new challenges it brings.
Some people (like me) struggle with this.
We try – but consistently run into hurdles.
So we have to accept what is reality and know that being the lone ranger may be better in the long run for our business and sanity.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject, I don’t see it discussed much and am curious to your thoughts.
Are you for partnerships? Against?
Have you tried it and couldn’t make it work?
Or just avoided it since the beginning?