Lidia Paschuk, Head and Member of the Supervisory Board of the SME School,  President of K.Fund

Win-win partnership. Column by Lidia Paschuk, President of the K.Fund

“One in the field is not a warrior”. This is an old and very accurate Ukrainian proverb. The experience of successful Ukrainian and foreign businessmen shows that it is better to build a business in partnership — and the results can be achieved faster and strengthen each other. Yes, you can even attract a partner to take the business to a new level.

But there are other stories. When friends started a business together, they invested time and money, but then something went wrong, and when they quarrelled, they stopped doing business together, not communicating at all. Therefore, entrepreneurs often avoid any partnership, fearing negative consequences and interference in the work of their companies. However, a partnership can be a good solution at the start of a business, when entering new markets or in the case of scaling, when expertise, or additional funds, or other resources are needed.

Henry Ford said, “Working together is the beginning, being together is progress, and working together is a success”. The partnership is about this — to start cooperation, develop business together, achieve results and work steadily in the future. Working with a partner is a daily job that should be built on mutually beneficial terms, ie win-win is our everything!

How to build a partnership in a win-win style?

  • Agree on the start and consolidate the agreement. The partnership means that, in fact, the company is owned by several partners. This means that they must form an agreement, preferably in writing. In it to state functions, distribution of expenses and profits, rules of payment of salaries and dividends, to begin to work. It is important to determine who will run the business or how the management function will be distributed among the partners.
  • Find out before the start of the activity what are the expectations of future partners. Someone wants to work in the premium segment, and someone — in the mass market. Common goals are important.
  • Partners should reinforce each other. Someone is a talented IT-worker, and someone is a manager and strategist.
  • Choose the legal form of the business.
  • Openness. Silence about the problems and non-recognition of the merits of the partner is its gradual destruction. Speak and be honest.
  • The partnership should not cut off the wings. Each of the partners can have other businesses and initiatives.

These tips do not cover all the issues of partnership, the formula for a successful win-win can be different for everyone. But the opportunity to achieve the goal faster in partnership is definitely worth taking advantage of.