Episode #20


The Benefits and Challenges of a Business Partnership

A business partnership can be daunting to some—and to others, it’s their means of being able to own a Franchise in the first place. Do you know where you fall on the spectrum? Are you open to a partnership or actively looking for a partner? In this episode of Franchise Secrets I talk about some of the challenges in navigating business partnerships but some of the immense benefits as well. If you’re interested in my journey in the world of franchising you’ll learn all about it in this episode.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:35] What my first partnerships looked like
  • [5:55] Working as an area developer and franchise consultant
  • [9:00] Work as a franchisee and challenges that ensued
  • [16:20] What I’ve done when things don’t go as expected
  • [19:55] How to structure partnership groups
  • [23:45] Under-promise and over-deliver on your partnership
  • [26:20] Characteristics to look for in a partner

Develop who you are in your partnership

My first partnership was with my parents—and they were hesitant to be involved. I asked them to cover the closing costs for my first rental property with the promise of paying them back. I think they dove into it with me because they didn’t want to see me fail. I wanted to prove to them that I had the drive and tenacity to make this work.

Through the process, I realized what my skills were and where I excelled. Marketing was a really good fit for me. Through the years I’ve honed and developed my strengths. I succeed when I can play the role of invest and advisor. Where do your strengths lie? Would a partnership with someone who complimented you be a good fit?

Some important takeaways that I’ve learned about a business partnership

I’ve been an area developer, a franchise owner, and a consultant—I’ve had years of practice in my many different hats. I enjoy partnerships and have found them to be extremely effective for what I like to do. Here are a couple of things I think are important when considering a partnership:

  • Make sure you have a local player (or hire someone) who has connections and relationships in the geographic area
  • Make sure you have clear roles for each partner
  • Have a clear operating agreement in place that you can reference
  • Learn when an opportunity isn’t the right fit and how to make a timely exit

I cover many more helpful tips—so keep listening!

Make sure you and your partners all agree on what success means

Make sure that your partners have the same mentality and goals relating to the business and its performance. Clearly define who holds what role in the business. Above all, do your best to hire the right people. Hire managers who have the mentality of owners who will do whatever it takes to grow the business you’ve invested in.

In your role, make sure you under-promise and over-deliver. 

You’ve probably heard it before, but it is a standard to live by. When everyone has clearly defined roles and is constantly over-performing you will continue to see success. For me, money is just a byproduct of success. Obviously, success means something different for everyone—so define what that is for yourself.

What characteristics to look for in a partner

So what do you look for in a business partner(s)? I believe it’s important to go into business with people who have the same goal as you but play different roles. If you want to be the investor and advisor find someone who likes to be involved in the day-to-day. Is someone a better communicator or manager? Partnerships need to be complementary so every aspect of the business is covered.

But be careful to partner with the right type of person. Whether they’re family, friends, or an acquaintance in the industry you have to be able to trust them implicitly. You also need a working relationship with each other that is open, authentic, and genuine—what you see is what you get. If someone doesn’t fit things are only going to get more difficult. So either don’t go into the partnership, or buy out partners who aren’t a good fit for the team.

Don’t miss this episode all about business partners in the franchise world!

Resources & People Mentioned

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