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Partnership Pre-Planning

March 17, 2018


I am very excited to be offering services in Partnership Pre-Planning. 


This service is specifically designed to serve individuals who are in the very beginning stages of starting a business and have decided to do so with one or more business partner.  


Making the decision to go start a business is a big step, and often a monumental undertaking, so finding a compatible compatriot or two to spread out the workload and the risk is a very attractive proposition.  How then do most people decide upon a business partner?  It can often come about in one of the following ways:


"Hey, we were brainstorming and came up with this world-changing idea, so we should start a business together."


"Hey, we all provide the same professional service (doctor, lawyer, accountant, realtor, etc.) we should join forces, combine overhead, staffing, and marketing costs, it's a win-win!"


"I bring the idea and know how, you bring the money.  We'll be 50/50 partners"




"We will need somebody who knows business, somebody who has computer programming skills, somebody who knows finance, and Bill has all of the connections we need!  We'll just each own 25% of the business."


Often the wheels are in motion setting up a business partnership with very little of substance about the relationship having actually been discussed.  Sure, you have talked about the product, the service, the business plan, the financing, the marketing, all important topics, but subjects like common vision, expectations, fairness, communication styles, exit strategy, philosophy on money, or trust can be neglected, and those are just barely scratching the surface.


The reality of a business partnership is that it can be as binding as a marriage, and deciding who to go into business with can truly make or break your chances of success.  It is also true that if the lease for a building falls through, you will almost certainly be able  to adjust and move on - but if trust is broken, it can and often does lead to the end of a business relationship, or even failure of the business itself.


If you do feel confident moving forward with a partnership, engaging in Partnership Pre-Planning can help establish a bombproof foundation upon which to build your business.  Through a series of guided sessions all of the difficult conversations will be had.  We use a variety of tools to help identify strengths, communication styles, approaches to conflict, and more.  By understanding these things about yourself and your partner, you can be better prepared for working together and understanding actions and motivations.


So why the "Pre"?  Isn't that just redundant when you are already talking about planning?  


The "Pre" has to do with the fact that this service should come before any of your other planning.  This is before you enter into legal partnership planning, before you enter into financial partnership planning, this should be the first place you invest your time and efforts.  Making the time and investment to do so can pay off in massive dividends as you move forward in your venture.

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