If you were thinking of launching a partnership, I want to take a moment and give you all the reasons you shouldn’t. I might just help you avoid the longest, costliest migraine of your life and maybe save a friendship. And if you weren’t thinking about launching a partnership, you shouldn’t skip this either. If your business gets off the ground, you’ll likely be approached by investors or other future partners.
Here are four of the most common factors behind why people enter into partnerships and why they fall flat :
1. Denial: You might think you work well with other and you are great at being a co-leader. But everyone who knows you best can tell you that you’re kidding of yourself. And deep down you agree. Most entrepreneurs have strong opinions and specific visions about their business. When we live in denial of ourselves, we can end up destroying others.
2. Impatience: People often take on business partners to speed up the process. But often end up doing the work of two. The key to escape from this is to get creative, hire an intern or call in a favor~rather than give away a piece of the pie. A partnership always gives away more than it gains.
3. Guilt: Sometimes people give away a percentage of ownership or shares to high performers or longtime employees. They’ll claim that as generosity for others loyalty, but scratch the surface and you’ll find it is often just guilt. Don’t give away your company because you feel guilty that you aren’t doing more to value your employees. Find smarter ways to express your gratitude for their good work.
4. Insecurity: Entrepreneurs often bring on partners to help them launch a company because they don’t believe they have the business smarts to make it successful. If you don’t know what a word means, you need to learn the definition, not buy a library of dictionaries. In the same way, taking on a partner is not the best way to educate yourself.
Still, if you want to have partnership ask if you believe that you are one of the 20 percent of entrepreneurs who can make a partnership work. In Entrepreneurship how long you’ve been doing it matters less than how much you’ve done it. Invest the hard work necessary to beat back the denial, incompetence, guilt, and insecurity that plagues you.
Trust me. The only ship that won’t sail is a partnership.