You could think that doing business with your friend will be easier. You could think that the risk divides by two. What really happens is a waterfall of drama. Partnership is not a thing you want to participate in. Read more below.
There has to be a boss. One
Every company has to have a boss, a guy or woman who takes care of the shape of it. Boss has the ability to hold the company in same direction and end problems. Problem occurs when there come two bosses. Partnership is such a thing, where theoretically two people have fifty percent of power. What will come out of it is either domination of one, or conflict.
I’ve learned very quick that partnership is a great recipe for problem after doing business with my best friend. I thought that nothing can kill our relationship and what was my shock when we argued for whole day. I’ve never thought that something like this can happen between two people who know each other for long time. But the responsibility lies on both sides.
Everything is good as long as it’s good
Beautiful pink days pass away as soon as problems occur. When you have your own company – you fail and only you cry. When you and your friend have a company, then you both have problem. It’s easy to share wins and say that you are winning both. When you are starting to make mistakes and your company has problems – you will certainly blame the second guy. And that’s not a matter of your character. It’s nature of partnerships.
We have a saying in Poland: “when you want to lose a friend – lend him money“. I think you can expand it on partnerships, that when you want to lose one, open a company together.
One has to be stronger in a partnership
There cannot be two bosses. It’s a recipe for problem. You call your employee, agree something and then the second guy calls him and agrees absolutely different thing. I doubt that two strong people can do same business together, because such guys want to dominate. On my own example I cannot tolerate anyone who goes in my way during anything and when my friend tried to interrupt me, I didn’t know how to react. Because on the one hand – it’s an undermining of my authority, on the other hand – it’s my friend. Naturally you would eliminate the guy from you way and do everything yourself, but you can’t. In psychology it’s called a dissonance.
Recipe for lack of problems
I see one possible solution for partnerships: don’t do a one business together. Let one take care of delivery of the product and sales, and second one will provide the goods. Two separate companies, but business made together. When everyone has their own piece of cake, they won’t fight. And you can do with your company whatever you want. Even paint the building pink.
Take care and keep in mind that money can ruin even the best relationships. It’s much cheaper for you to lose potential profit, than to find new friend. Remember about it.