Before you consider shaking on it, you should consider the potential issues that can come with partnership. Buying a transportation business holds a number of inherent risks, and adding a partner into the deal can double the risk factors. Of course, it can also cut your responsibilities and personal risks in half, if you have the right partner. To help get your partnership off on the right foot, you’ll want to ask yourself the following questions. If they reveal negative perspectives, you’ll be glad you found out now instead of when you’re living out the nightmare of a dysfunctional partnership.
Finding the Right Match
Just because your spouse or a friend is a great comrade when it comes to your family or social activities, doesn’t mean that that person will be the ideal business partner. In fact, getting involved with those whose relationships you value can put those relationships at risk. When you share values with someone and can trust in their integrity, you’re on the right track. You’ll also want to be sure that the person has a strong business sense and shares your long-term goals for your transportation business. Just like other relationships, a business partnership won’t mean you always agree about the details; in fact, it will sometimes mean listening to the other person and compromising your preferences to arrive at a middle-ground result.
Arriving at an Agreement
Both at the outset of your partnership at throughout your business dealings, you’ll find that you and your partnership will have differences of opinion. While you’ll both aim for a successful business, you may have different ideas about how to achieve that goal. Even though you share the business evenly, you won’t be able to put in exactly the same amounts of money, time, and ability. At the same time, though, you should attempt to outline each of your responsibilities.
In addition to responsibilities, you’ll also want to agree on long-term objectives for your business. Are you content to earn a living wage, while your partner dreams of building a transportation empire through expansion and acquisitions? Do you look forward to a flexible schedule, while your partner wants to put in the long hours needed to grow your business? You really need to make sure you’re on the same page.
Putting it in Writing
While shaking hands may be part of the deal, it shouldn’t be the only part: You need to get it in writing. Contacting a professional transaction attorney will ensure that your partnership is legally protected. Since one of you will probably want to leave the partnership before the other, both parties will be protected when they know what needs to happen to the business in such a case. Each partner’s responsibilities can also be outlined in this document.
Not only will taking these steps help when an unexpected illness, disagreement, or death comes up, but it will help you now, as well. Entering into a partnership with expectations clearly defined will help you start out on the right foot.