You may start as a lone entrepreneur tinkering with the idea of a start-up, but as you progress, you may need a business partner to help your dream of owning your own business become a reality.
There are many advantages to having a business partner. The right partner can bring additional knowledge and skills to the table, as well as much-needed contacts and capital. Therefore, selecting the right business partner is essential.
For any business to grow, it needs a pool of talent, workable ideas and resources to keep innovating and flourishing. Partnerships can provide all of these things. A great business partner with the right mix of experience, skills and knowledge can help your business grow. So, how can you choose the right business partner?
Look for someone you can trust
The most important virtue to look for in a business partner is trust. No matter how committed or professional your prospective partner is, if they are not trustworthy, all the important traits they have are useless.
Like choosing a spouse, you need to be smart in choosing a trusted partner for your business. Look for someone who believes in you, your ideas and your goals. Don’t rush your selection and don’t settle for less.
Look for someone who shares your passion
Most businesses are built out of passion or desire. It’s crucial, therefore, to choose a partner who has the same passion as you, because they are going to share most of their daily life with you anyway.
If you select a partner who doesn’t share your passion, they won’t keep your vision at heart, your company won’t grow, and you won’t succeed.
Look for someone with a strong commitment
How committed is your prospective partner? You must ask yourself this question before choosing the right ally for your business.
Keep in mind that the reason you need a co-founder is to help build a successful venture. No matter what connections your partner has, if they are not committed, there is no point in collaborating with them. They are not an asset to you; they are a liability.
Spend time outside of work
Take your prospective partner out to a beer parlour or a suya joint to have an informal conversation. Get to know them. Ask them about their previous ventures (if they have any) and understand their motives for partnering with you.
Don’t be afraid to ask probing questions. For instance, “what was your smartest business move?” If you receive an answer like, “well, at my previous venture, I managed to outsmart an angel investor, and ended up with the lion’s share of the money, despite our business failing,” they may not be the business partner you want.
The key is to research and thoroughly vet all potential candidates. This will help you pick the candidate that will help you to create the successful, lasting company of your dreams.
234Finance is an online hub that promotes African Entrepreneurship. We feature small and medium sized businesses on the platform, shedding light on the current and future developments in diverse sectors across Africa. We also provide free resources, share opportunities and events on our platform that entrepreneurs can benefit from and thrive in Africa’s tough business landscape.