There are many theories behind how to create a successful start up, from having a creative and innovative idea to devising the perfect business strategy. Yet the real foundations to a business’s success are not just the ideas, but the people behind them and the manner in which they communicate and cooperate together to reach collective commercial goals.

In order to establish a strong and profitable business, successful entrepreneurs have to look at themselves objectively, analysing both their strengths and weaknesses. It is rare that an individual possesses the full range of skills and expertise required to build a successful business from the ground up, especially in instances where they have no previous experience of founding a start up. Perhaps this explains why people often look to others to share and support their ambitions by enlisting the help of a partner.

Working with another party holds a wealth of advantages in business, allowing individuals to utilise each others’ skills where their own may be lacking. Each person plays a key role, and more importantly is able to contribute in a way that is unique to their own skill set and knowledge, allowing the business to thrive. For example, a clothing designer might be great at doing just that, but come up short when it comes to accounts or marketing. Working with a partner with those skills could make the difference between lots of units sold at the right price and poor sales that don’t make ends meet.

Taking on a partner might look like an ideal solution, but there are a number of things to be borne in mind. Firstly, consider the value of each party’s contribution and decide how the ownership of the business should be shared. Secondly, before committing to work with one another it is essential you determine whether you share the same common goals. Where there is a difference in ambition or view this can create an unproductive relationship, stifling the progression of the business rather than aiding it. That being said, it is unrealistic to assume that along the way there will be no disagreements and compromise in these instances is key.

Naturally, working with a partner means you will spend the vast majority of time working along side one another, especially during the early stages. A strong business relationship requires both trust and confidence; therefore it is important that you have established a way of working through problems with one another, respecting one another’s opinions. Open communication and a clear framework of goals and expectations is key. Noting down those goals and expectations is also a good idea; initially just informally but a legally binding framework is also worthwhile.

Here at Farleys Solicitors our Commercial and Corporate law team offer a comprehensive range of legal services across the full range of business law. For further information regarding partnership or contractual agreements contact us on 0845 050 1958, alternatively please complete an online enquiry form.