Starting a new business can be the most exciting time of your life. When you’re sitting on a big idea, it’s natural to want to share it. Plus, you’re likely to need a bit support from other people if you’re to get the thing off the ground. Most importantly, you may need a business partner: somebody who can bring both economic and emotional investment to the table.
You know you need someone you can trust, and someone who is passionate about your project. Once you get down to choosing an individual, it gets much more complex than that. Do you need someone who’s good with figures, or a great speaker? Is it more important that you have chemistry with each other, or that you share the same level of skill and experience?
Whatever type of person you need, whomever the individuals are who make your short list, you need to make sure they are indeed what they appear to be before you make a commitment. It should be someone you’ve known for at least a year, so you know they are stable and that they truly possess the qualities boasted on their résumé.
Don’t get so hung up on their skills or experience that you fail to read their deeper ideals. Core values should be assessed both in a formal setting (writing a kind of manifesto together) but also by spending leisure time together where appropriate.
Finally, you need to make sure that you share the same understanding of each other’s rights and responsibilities. Again, this is a case of preparing a written document together – one that acknowledges how to deal with problems should things turn sour, however unlikely that might seem at this point.
To get a precise idea of the kind of person you should be looking for, run through the infographic below and see which of the eight key business partner types is right for you. Get this part right, and you’ll be ready to get on with the fun stuff.