Most people who start a business do so on their own. We all struggle to complete the scores of daily business-related tasks ourselves; and very often some tasks are only partially completed. We put off jobs that we know will be difficult until another day and sometimes we just never get around to doing them.
This was how my own online business was, struggling at times. That was until I came across another guy in the same business; we now talk every day, help each other with daily tasks and are there for each other when things go pear-shaped. Even as a blogger a partner gave me a massive boost.
The same is true regardless of whether yours is an online business or a real world one: A partner will improve the health of your business.
Partnerships as legal entities are fraught with difficulties, but even an informal partnership will help you to succeed. My partner and I each have our own strengths, so we each use those strengths to help one another. We both work on our own, but bounce ideas off each other and help each other out on a daily basis.
It is very easy to lose track of reality if you are working on your own 24/7/365. Having someone to bounce ideas off can help prevent expensive mistakes. Sometimes you just need someone to talk with to make you realise that your intended action is not the best way forward.
Constructive criticism is one thing that any one-man business lacks for. You and your partner can help each other’s business to improve by providing non-threatening and helpful criticism. It is sometimes difficult to see the big picture when you are in business on your own; you can help each other with your business visions and the strategic planning needed to get there.
Extra Knowledge and Skills
I used to think I knew everything I needed to know about my online business. My partner showed me that I didn’t. He helped me to improve my website’s appearance and functionality, showed me how to analyse visitor data and gave me advice on my writing.
Nobody knows everything; ours is a world of specialisms. Each of us has unique knowledge because of things that have happened to us over our lifetime. Each of us has a different skill-set that we bring to bear to solve problems.
If you partner with someone in a related business you will gain access to that person’s knowledge and skill-set. It’s a 2-way street of course; you also get to apply your own skill-set to your partner’s business issues. You are both better off for the interaction, you both benefit by giving.
Contacts are vital to any business. If you work with a partner then you double the number of contacts you have access to.
Contacts may be social or professional, it does not matter: Your business is only a business if you have contacts.
How Do You Find a Partner?
If you are working in the real world then you will find related businesses in the normal way of things. Plumbers meet electricians and plasterers on every job they do. Gardeners call in tree surgeons to handle large trees that need bigger equipment than they have themselves. Builders meet architects and quantity surveyors. There is a lot more business done over a few drinks or a game of golf than you could ever imagine.
In the virtual world you will meet people in forums and on social networking sites. Help other people and they will help you. Gradually you will find that you are talking to a few people every day and that you have become friends and partners. It takes longer to grow trust and to develop a business relationship online but if you keep helping others and have a positive attitude it will happen.