Partnerships are important part of business as well as ministry. Great partners can help you grow while a bad one can be the death of a dream. While we can easily form a partnership, it takes a long time to break one apart, sometimes with dire consequences. Here’s what I consider before going into a partnership with an individual or organization.
Trust. If there’s no trust then you should never, ever go into any kind of partnership. If you get the feeling that the other party is waiting for you to mess up so they can get the upper hand on any situation, run for the hills.
Respect. Whether it be business or personal, if you don’t respect the leader of an organization, then you shouldn’t create any kind of partnership, no matter how beneficial it looks on the onset. Once, I went to work for a man because I thought I could “bypass” my own lack of respect for him. Big mistake.
Different skills. Find people and organizations that bring different skills to the partnership. If you bring the same skills to the table, you might not have a partner but a competitor.
Compromise. No one gets everything they want. That’s just life. If you or your potential partner cannot compromise on the onset, you’re doomed.
Defining the win. Wins can be vastly different even for people working on the same venture. Don’t assume that your partner’s win is the same as yours. Understand what they value and what they want out of the partnership. Managing expectations is critical in any relationship.
Exit strategy. Nothing lasts forever. Even the best of friends often grow apart and move on. It’s imperative to have a clear, well-documented exit strategy for both parties. That’s where a good lawyer is worth every penny you pay.
What else you add or change on this list?