How to Select the Best Business Partner

by nbarduson on November 20, 2012

Selecting a business partner can be a risky process when not handled correctly.

Jennifer Daly, owner of Kinespirit—NYC’s largest Gyrotonic and Pilates studio, began her search for a business partner when she realized she needed help in her business.

She expressed her initial interest, “because I knew strength came in numbers and if I wanted to grow, I needed more hands…someone invested in the company’s heart and soul and bottom line.”

The process of finding a great business partner should not begin with your best friends.  View your business partner as an investment in your company.

It’s strategic decisions that will save your company at the end of the day.  Instead of simply hiring a close companion, you should also consider the business dynamics of a business partner.

Jennifer offers her experience with the business partner search process below.  With these four tips, she hopes to prevent future disastrous partnerships in the business world.

         1. Do not partner with your twin.

It is wise to find a partner that offers different skills and talents than you.  You want someone who can make up for your weaknesses, as well as learn from your strengths.  You should compliment each other instead of echo one other.

         2. Keep professional and personal lives separate.

Jennifer insists, “You need to partner with someone that you can honestly speak your mind to without fear of hurting feelings.” Find someone who is not afraid to admit when they are wrong or stick up for what is right when necessary.

         3. Communication is key.

Your relationship with your business partner must be transparent.  Email and personal dialogues should be clear and honest.  Your partner should also be confident enough to speak their mind, as well as not harbor resentment or bad feelings.

Overall, Jennifer encourages small business owners to take the time to learn how your potential business partner operates.

         4. Your Partnership Is Like A Marriage.

“Treat your business partnership like a marriage. Don’t rush or be impulsive—put yourself in challenging situations with each other and see how you do.”

If they offer strengths where you are weak, a secure sense of professional and personal life, and a persistent pursuit of communication, your company could be in great hands.

Do you have any tips or suggestions when it comes to selecting a business partner? Offer your experience below!



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