Starting your own business can be intimidating but having a partner by your side can make the challenges a lot easier to face, and the successes sweeter to celebrate. The key is to find the right partner for you, and to be mindful of keeping it a productive and healthy partnership first and foremost.
Different personalities, dynamics, and the day to day stress of a business can easily put strain on a business relationship. So these are five tips that we have found especially helpful in keeping our partnership and friendship from going sideways!
1. Communication. All day, every day!
I can’t even count the number of times we talk or text throughout the day. Because there are two of us, we find this the best way to make sure that we haven’t let information or important details slip through the cracks, or assumptions that someone is taking care of something that they aren’t.
We make sure that we know each other’s daily schedules and availability and this helps to eliminate a lot of misunderstandings. Seems like overkill right? It’s not. Trust us.
2. Don’t play the blame game!
When something happens we remember and remind one another that we are human and mistakes happen. We are both bound to make them from time to time, and do, so don’t place blame, because you will want a little compassion when you are the one who makes the error. Take on a team mentality even when things go wrong.
3. Understand each other’s life stage.
For us, we are both moms, so we understand the pressures and time commitments that go along with that. Your business partner might be in a different life stage but understanding each other’s situations and external priorities can go a long way in aligning roles and responsibilities within the business that work for you both.
4. Shared information.
Technology is the key that allows us to share information and stay organized. We both have access to all communication channels and have shared spreadsheets and notes online and through phone apps that we are both able to access, add and make changes to.
This keeps us both informed and on the same page about the status of all business dealings at any given time.
Dropbox is an essential app we use, (it’s where we keep our shared Excel spreadsheet and all professional photos)
5. Know your Strengths.
We each have our own strengths and pinpointing them allows us to divide and conquer. Knowing what each other excels at and enjoys to do helps us divide up the responsibilities. This ensures that we both enjoy what we are doing and gives peace of mind that all areas of the business are taken care of.
There you have it! Working for yourself can be very rewarding and we have found that keeping these things in mind have really helped us to keep our partnership productive and our friendship intact. We hope some of these things will help your partnership thrive as ours does!
Crystal and Lindsey
Grow & Co.