Most brilliant ideas take birth in a single brain. However, most of the time, it takes at least two pairs of hands to bring that idea into fruition.
So if you are planning a startup, there is no better way to do it than with a business partner. But how and where can you find someone that can give your business a push in the right direction?
Before you start searching for a business partner, here are some important things that you will need to consider.
If you are confident about running a startup solo, then a mentor could be the answer. A mentor can help you make decisions, bounce off your ideas, and advise you. Unlike business partners, mentors do not usually take any shares from your startup.
Mentors are also very valuable when it comes to funding, since they’re likely to have experience and connections.
By identifying your skills first, you will be able to highlight skills that you will need from a business partner. Doing this also helps you find tasks that you lack interest, bandwidth, and the ability to execute.
You need someone who is willing to shoulder the same responsibilities and face the same risks together. So, clearly state your requirements.
Consider if you need one or more components in a potential business partner:
When it comes to looking for a business partner, looking at the right places is paramount.
If you are looking for a technical partner, then technical communities will serve you better than business communities, vice versa.
The internet is always a great place to start looking for a business partner. Entrepreneurs and business experts frequent co-founder sites regularly. So there are high chances of meeting with likeminded people with similar interests.
Some of the best sites to scout business partners are
Off the internet, old colleagues, friends, and your school’s network is an excellent place to start. Don’t underestimate the power of networking when it comes to your search for a business partner.
Experienced family members are also some potential. However, you need to be rigorous and quite ruthless in screening family members. The reason is that startups usually require a lot of time, effort, and pressure to get going.
Mixing business with personal emotions, especially with family members, is generally not a good idea.
Apart from personal connections, you can consider attending events and camps for startups. At any time, there are always a couple of business events for startups near you.
Many a time, the best business partners come from these events. However, no matter the mode of search you use, there are steps that you need to take after finding a potential business partner.
A lot of people assume that finding a potential business partner is the solution to all your business problems. But this is only the beginning. Before you can introduce your business to a stranger, you need to take care of the following first.
If potential employees undergo screening to join a company, a potential business partner should be no different.
Some hard-hitting areas to screen include:
Even if a potential partner’s resume blows you away, refrain yourself from going all on board at once. It is always wise to have a trial period with a business partner.
This way, you can both test the working relationship without any hard commitments. Besides, you can also arrive at a mutual decision on whether to continue or to end the relationship.
Business partners often have shared roles and responsibilities. However, this grey area of shared responsibilities has also broken up many business relationships.
Therefore, it is best to identify the respective roles in the beginning. This way, you will avoid misunderstandings and understand where you both stand.
Finding the right business partner is not easy. However, if you know the realities, where to look and how to set goals, it is actually quite doable.
A business partner can be profitable for your business in many ways. You might even find a confidant and a friend for life if you’re lucky.
Just remember to keep business and personal emotions separate, and the first step to this is to incorporate as a company to keep your liabilities distinct.