Strategic business partners come in all shapes and sizes. Partners aren’t just the ones with whom you share profit and expenses. They are everyone from your supplier to your customer to your investor. Your partnerships will affect your business on many levels, so you need to know how to choose your strategic business partners with great care.
How to Choose Strategic Business Partners
Donna Peak with Entrepreneurship.org says picking a business partner is similar to picking a tennis partner. You pick a good one you win. A bad one, you lose.
Some criteria for choosing a strategic business partner is based on the following questions you should ask yourself:
What value would this partner bring to your company that would have the greatest impact?
Is your company and theirs compatible?
Are their goals and strategies consistent with yours?
Do they have a good reputation with other partners?
What are the risks of being in partnership and what are the risks of not being in partnership with them?
Can they provide access to other potential partners?
Have a partnership disaster or success? Tell us about it in the comments below!
Steps to Choosing the Right Business Partner
When choosing a strategic business partner, there are steps you should make before entering into your partnership. “Strategic” is the optimum word here. Whoever your partner is, no matter what their contribution to your company is, you need to take careful consideration before entering into an agreement.
Here are some steps to take before entering into a partnership:
Where’s the gap? As Dirty Harry said.. “A man’s got to know his limitations.” What does your market need that you can’t provide?
Identify criteria for selecting the right partner (See list above)
Who can fill the gap? Research companies that can fill the gap you have identified as your weakness. This could be anything from a virtual assistant to a social media expert.
What’s in it for them? Write up a proposal that explains why you would be a good fit for your partner. Anybody working with you wants to know what’s in it for them. How can they benefit, beyond just adding dollars to their bottom line. How can you fill in their gap?
Pick up the phone and start dialing!
Once you found the perfect partnership, you both will work up an agreement that benefits both of you. Don’t ever enter into a partnership without some kind of document that outlines the terms of your agreement. You might be in love with each other now, but we all know things happen that could cast a shadow over your relationship.
Benefits of Having a Strategic Business Partner
Some entrepreneurs have a hard time giving up a piece of their pie. Whether it’s spending more money to get the help you need to fulfill your dreams or sharing the profits of your hard-earned money. But Founder and CEO of eWomenNetwork, Sandra Yancey says, she would rather have a smaller piece of something than 100% of nothing. The bottom line is, we all have gaps in what we want to provide to our customers and what we actually can provide.
Author of Game-Changing Content, eWomenNetwork
Click to listen to Sandra Yancey’s interview on “How to Choose the Right Strategic Business Partners” on my eWN Radio Network show, “Spotlight on eWomenNetwork.”
If you want to grow your business to make an impact on more people and make more money, then it’s time you looked elsewhere to fulfill your destiny.