Choosing a business partner: What to look out for

Your business is your livelihood. Your business partner therefore has to be someone you can trust with your wallet.

Your business is your future. Your business partner therefore must be someone you can trust to stand by your vision of the future.

You get the picture. Trust is such a key ingredient in any relationship but never more so than in a business partnership. Never ever forget that trust is the cement that will enable everything, from taking a break right through to making better and quicker decisions.

Read more about working with a business partner:

Divorcing your business partner

Doing business with friends and family – keeping it professional

5 key things to consider before starting a business

As for the trenches, you need someone who will stand behind you and fight tooth and nail to achieve any goals for the good of the business.  

Be under no illusion, business is always a battle, be it winning new clients, holding onto existing ones, delivering new services to market and so on. The business partner you need and deserve will be the one who at the end of a discussion, even if still not 100 per cent persuaded as to whether or not something is right, will say “you know what, if you still believe it and want to give it a go, then I’ll give it 110 per cent to make it fly”. 

That’s also exactly the sort of person you would want with you in the trenches.

Grow, smile and enjoy the journey

To take us back to the start, you will spend more time with your business partner than you will your life partner so, as in life, never close the door on an argument and end each day with a smile.

It’s beyond important for your own sanity that your business partner is someone with whom you can happily grow and develop; someone to share a barrel of laughs with and crack a smile with at the end of the day. That someone who you want alongside you on the greatest and most exciting journey you can have – owning and running your own business.

Like I say, there is no secret recipe, you’ll generally just know.

Chris Smith is chief executive of Opinio Group.

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