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Page 2

They both had a lot of money tied up in the business, which was not as successful as they had envisioned.

In the rush to start their business, Bob and Jack never addressed the details of their business relationship; they knew t

hat together they possessed the relevant skills, and figured they could get along with each other well enough to operate the business. Besides, working out the details of the business relationship would have been time consuming, and didn’t seem to be important, so they skipped this (critical) step.

As a result of their problems with each other, they stopped communicating, which exacerbated their problems. Decisions that ought to have been made together were being made unilaterally or not at all. They had no agreement that spelled out what would happen if the partnership were to fall apart, or how a partner could exit the partnership. And because they were angry at each other, the negotiations on these issues were bitter.

Unfortunately, Bob and Jack’s situation is not that unusual; and yet, it could have been prevented. Partners of failed businesses often admit that had they taken the time to explore the relationship and each other’s expectations before jumping into the business, they could have discovered up front the issues that caused the friction leading to their break-up. By working through the types of issues that often cause problems among business principals, prospective partners are better able to prevent the issues from causing them problems. They also are able to develop strategies for overcoming obstacles that are revealed during the discussions, as well as develop systems and procedures in key areas and learn an approach for tackling other tough issues that will inevitably arise.

So congratulations for buying this book! Hopefully, you’ll take the time to engage in the discussions recommended in the book with your partner, which will enable you to minimize the risk of partnership breakdown and build a strong foundation for your partnership.

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