When a business opportunity presents itself, you don't want to pass it up, even if it is a venture you know you cannot handle on your own. Searching for the perfect partner to invest in commercial real estate, sell your product or offer your service is not as easy as scrolling down your social media friends list. You must reach your choice through careful consideration, long conversations and diligent investigation.
Even if your partner is someone you have known since childhood, it cannot hurt to do some checking into his or her background and to invite your potential partner to do the same to you. This way, you will both have a clearer idea of each other's experiences and how those experiences will affect your working relationship.
Look closer at your potential partner
When you approach someone to be your business partner, it is important that your candidate understand you are not committed at this point. A candidate who is unwilling to go through a thorough screening process—and take the time to look into your qualifications—may not be a good fit. While it may feel awkward to request this information, it is better to uncover any potential risks than to go blindly into a partnership that can end up costing you dearly. You may consider doing the following:
- Asking for a list of personal and professional references and contacting them to learn how well your future partner worked as a team player
- Checking your potential partner's online presence for any questionable or offensive posts that may tarnish the image of your business
- Requesting a personality test, such as a Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator, to see if your personality types tend to work well together
- Doing a credit check on your potential partner, both for personal finances and any businesses in which he or she was involved
Take the results of your investigation seriously and try to anticipate any problems that may arise. You may be able to address some of those concerns through the terms of a comprehensive partnership contract.
It is possible that, after your investigation, you decide this person is not the right fit for your business. In fact, you may wonder if a partnership is the most effective business entity for your plans. Seeking legal advice is a wise move if you have many questions about these matters. Not only will an Arizona attorney review your documents and contracts, but you will also obtain solid guidance in choosing the most appropriate business entity to maximize your success.