Build Better Business Partnerships and Alliances

There can be disastrous results when care is not taken to build a solid foundation under which a new Business Partnership or Alliance can safely develop strength and stability. This Top Ten list offers some basic steps to consider when moving forward into a Business Partnership and Alliance, that can decrease the chances for negative results, and can increase the chance for a Successful Partnership to be established.

  1. After choosing one another as potential partners, establish mutual ideas, goals, and philosophies operating in the team you are developing.

    Look for enough compatibility to challenge and stimulate one another over time, as well as the presence of mutual trust.

  2. Choose a partner whose strengths complement the limits of the other partner, and vise versa.

  3. Establish the project or core focus of the partnership that is being created.

  4. Determine the kind of Partnership that will be created.

    Will it be Equal, or possibly an Associate relationship, or any other possible combinations in between? Factors such as determining level of financial risk, availability of time and energy for the project, and prior existence of any intellectual property tied to the project are some key items to consider. Hiring a Coach that has expertise in this area is recommended during the formative stages of the partnership, and at any time such support is needed in the future, in order to protect the best interests for each partner involved.

  5. Develop a sound financial compensation plan for profits received that both partners agree to in a signed document or contract.

    Legal representation for the partnership may be appropriate at this juncture.

  6. Determine what roles each partner will play during the course of the project, defined and clearly documented for future reference.

    Be accountable to your role, until both partners change the structure of roles established.

  7. Create and support the intent to continually place a working plan into action, review the results of the action taken, and making expedient and necessary shifts that will support the health of the partnership over the lifespan of the alliance.

  8. If possible get the support of your immediate support system established before entering into partnership.

    You will need to educate them about expenditures of time, money, energy and other resources that will be needed to successfully launch the project(s) your partnership represents.

  9. Have planned, regularly schedule meetings.

    These meetings will be set up for the purpose of discussing the wins and challenges, what's working and what's not, areas of discord and mutual planning for future growth and expansion.

  10. Set a minimum time period that both partners will agree to a "no exit" clause.

    New ventures take time to be planted, watered and nourished, weeded and ultimately harvested.

Article by Meir Liraz, president of (

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