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When we are first starting out in business, we realize very quickly that we are in charge. Admittedly, this is partially by default because we don’t usually have the budget to hire people to help! Nevertheless, as we build from the ground up, we can find ourselves becoming very comfortable calling all the shots. A couple of week’s ago, I wrote an article about how we can become more effective leaders, which is key when you start to hire people to work for you and your company. In that article, I mentioned that leadership is mostly about how you relate to others than anything else. However, how you relate to others is important for any relationship you have, including business relationships.
There is one type of business relationship that gets a bad rap, but I want to talk about its importance as you aim for that successful career and business. This would be partnerships! In my opinion, while the thought of business partnerships make some people want to run for the hills due to everything you need to consider, I believe you should work hard to acquire them! Most people get weary at the thought of them because like most relationships, they don’t often work out. This is because of the typical reasons, but when they are done right, they are invaluable and will be a tremendously positive influence on your business.
It is important to note also, that business partnerships don’t always mean that you must create a separate entity (or company) where you both hold equal stake in it. I believe the best partnerships, are those where you each have your own businesses that complement each other (there will be more on that in a separate article).
Here are just some of the reasons why you NEED business partnerships!
You Will Expand Your Customer Base
Partnerships grow your business in unimaginable ways and the beauty of it is, you won’t have to work so hard. One way it helps to grow your business, is by opening the door to a ton of potential customers. This is because, you will be immediately connected to the customer base of the company you partner with and vice versa. In addition, you will likely refer people to each other, and that is always a good thing. It is free marketing so to speak, especially if you all work out a ‘badge’ system where your logos are shared onto each other’s websites or social media. Expanding your customer base, will ultimately raise your bottom dollar, and it is a major reason to consider partnerships!
You Will Expand Your Reach
In addition to expanding your potential customer base, partnerships expand your reach. Your message and mission statement can be put in front of more people, which of course is always a good thing. The more eyes on your business and what you offer, the better business will inevitably be. More opportunities will come your way, things you wouldn’t have even imagined!
The right partnerships align you with the right people. This will add tremendous credibility to you and your business. People like doing business with people they like, and if that person happens to recommend you, the customer will likely not ask many questions. If you align your company with companies that have a great reputation, it will automatically give the appearance that you too, are professional and trustworthy. This will help you during the sales process, you wont have to work so hard to prove your value or trustworthiness. Some of the heavy lifting is done, without you having to lift a finger!
Assistance Without Hiring Staff
We could all use a little help, but as I mentioned before it takes awhile for you to get to the point where you can hire a staff. Cultivating strategic partnerships will allow you to get some assistance with your business without having to hire someone. They may not be able to help you with the day to day tasks, but they can help with the overall goals and visions that you have.
Invaluable Learning Experience
We should always be open to learning, and what better way to do that than with your peers? Connecting with another like-minded entrepreneur as you both grow your business together is an invaluable learning experience! You will both have the opportunity to bounce ideas off of each other. You can both learn from each other’s mistakes, triumphs, and struggles. There really isn’t a better way gain insightful, real world knowledge (other than learning things the yourself the hard way, but why would you want to do that when you can opt for a different option?). You can save a lot of time and heartache by learning from someone else. The ability to watch something unfold in real time is amazing, and if you can help each other along the way it’s even better!
Partnerships can be scary, but I want to encourage all of you to think about the pros that partnerships can bring to your business. A major thing to note, is that partnerships take some of the load off of you. The free advertisement and business knowledge you can gain from them is truly precious. I am a firm believer that partnerships offer more benefits than not. When done with the right people, it will bring such value to the life of your business.
What do you think? Are partnerships important? Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to follow me on all of my social media networks!