Effective partnerships have become an essential part of doing business, whether you’re a social entrepreneur getting started, or an established business looking to innovate. Not only are they suitable for completing projects, but they are also critical to gaining access to networks that enable you to expand your reach or find new customers. However, working with partners is not always easy.
With effective partnerships, both you and partners can gain benefits that are just the same or fair. Imagine if your relationship with partners doesn’t work out due to preventable issues, you’ll risk losing valuable time and potentially damaging your reputation. Relationship building takes time and a significant amount of effort.
So, how do you create partnerships that are effective and ensure the end result is successful? Here are six essentials for building effective partnerships:
1. Get clear on your mission
This is one of the most important things because if it’s unclear how everyone feels about each other and where their boundaries lie, it will only lead to stress and problems later on down the road. You need to be crystal clear with your expectations and missions so that you know what you’re getting yourself into and aren’t blindsided later.
You need both sides to be open and honest about the feelings. Also, know what’s expected from each other before anything else happens. If someone isn’t being transparent or honest, the relationship should not move forward until they are.
2. Understand that successes and failures are shared relatively equally
Both partners have an understanding that failures are equally shared, but so are successes. Otherwise, one person may feel they have the upper hand or are doing more work than the other, which can lead to problems later on. This doesn’t mean that things need to be split 50/50 all of the time.
However, you need to convince your future partners about this matter beforehand. Things like success/failure share should be discussed upfront. You could discuss how one thing should be shared at how much percentage both sides agree on.
3. Contracts should be made
If you find yourself in a situation where it’s necessary to put something in writing, then you should make sure that it’s done properly through a contract or agreement if possible.
A contract shouldn’t be used as a tool for controlling people and allowing them to walk all over you in the process. It should be a means for ensuring that everyone is on the same page about what’s supposed to happen and when it’s expected to occur while ensuring everyone involved has given their approval.
4. Different people have different strengths
Everyone has something they’re good at, and when it comes to working with others, knowing one of your partner’s strengths can help make things easier overall. If someone is more of an expert in managing business operations or developing innovation trends, don’t feel like you need to do everything yourself without letting them help out. The reverse can also be confirmed if you excel in some areas but others don’t.
The key here is to communicate with partners what you’re expert or lacking in a certain situation. That way, they can act upon the thing you have less expertise on. In the same way, you should understand your partners’ strengths in order to work efficiently.
5. Communication is key
This can’t be stressed enough. Communication is vital for everything related to building a solid relationship with any kind of business person, whether it be one on one or within a group setting. If communication breaks down, so will the entire partnership or friendship. Keep communication open at all times and never assume what the other person is thinking.
It’s essential to communicate everyone’s role within the partnership to be on the same page from day one. Make sure all partners understand their role, what they are responsible for, and the schedule of milestones.
6. Build a team of all different skill sets
When you’re putting together your team, be sure to hire people who complement each other’s skills and personalities. Hire people who have strengths and abilities that can fill in gaps or cover up weaknesses. Also, don’t forget to include people who think differently than you – it will help stimulate new ideas and bring about unique solutions to problems.
Once you’ve put the above steps in place, it’s time to get your business moving. You should be ready to start enjoying some of the benefits of running a partnership. Do it right, and forget about all that you can gain from an effective working relationship with another business owner. We hope this guide has helped prepare you for making your partnership work!
Andre Oentoro is the founder of Breadnbeyond, an award-winning explainer video company. He helps businesses increase conversion rates, close more sales, and get positive ROI from explainer videos (in that order).
Email: [email protected]
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