Developing the idea for a new business can be exciting, and it often happens with other people. Whether the people you involve are family members who help you brainstorm or friends who are active collaborators, it can be challenging to separate yourself from the influence of others as you start your business.
Having a support network can be vital to the beginning of a company. While some businesses do well when friends join forces, in many cases, having a friend as your business partner can spell disaster.
This is what you should consider before you start your new venture with your friend as a partner.
Honesty Can Be a Challenge
Even when your friend is someone who has been a confidant for years, it can be challenging to be honest with them about some aspects of running a business. Often, as you get started on your new company, you both are dedicated to the same purpose, and your enthusiasm helps you get through challenging times.
Eventually, the novelty of the new business wears off, or one partner begins to have other challenges to deal with, and the workload becomes uneven. This is often when one partner has a difficult time being honest with the other.
Ultimately, one partner becomes resentful because they feel like they are doing more of the work. Then, once the resentment gets to be too much, the partnership dissolves, and the partners are also no longer friends.
Creating a Workable Agreement
If you are going to start a business with a friend as your partner, make sure your agreement is flexible. There should be room to renegotiate the percentage of ownership and financial liability if you need to dissolve the partnership.
It is possible to maintain a business partnership when you go into business with a friend, but it starts with honest communication and flexibility. Before starting a business together, you should both evaluate your friendship and what you want from the endeavor to make sure you both understand the risks and rewards.