Difficulties do not take long to appear when we work directly with other people. These problems are of the most varied types and natures, and which would easily be the subject of one post a day on our blog. Due to these difficulties, we occasionally think that working alone could be more profitable and less stressful. This is where it can be helpful to remember the famous quote by the English writer John Donne – “No man is an island”. As important as the individual focus moments in which we work on something that requires great concentration are, it is important to remember that we don’t have all the answers and that there are problems that we cannot solve because we limit the possible solutions when we’re doing it alone. By creating networks of partnerships, it is possible to expand our possibilities, which are so necessary in this economic crisis period.
When we are entrepreneurs, the idea of working in partnership with others causes us a certain distrust. It’s an almost natural reaction, since we’ve opened our own business with so much effort and many sleepless nights and, of course, we don’t want to take unnecessary risks.
However, this resistance is as natural as man’s ability to make a judgment about a real situation, whether it is really useful and positive or whether it will lead nowhere. This skill needs training and encouragement to develop well, just like any other; and some need to practice it more. How to use it, then? Under which parameters?
The bases for a good partnership
First of all, every partnership serves to solve two problems at the same time: your own problem and your partner’s problem. If there is no interest from both sides, the partnership simply doesn’t go forward and becomes exploratory.
Second, you need to build foundations for trust. If you know your partner, it gets easier. If you don’t know, it is necessary to create mechanisms so that the transparency is such that both of you feel calm with each other’s actions. This means three activities:
- Search your partner’s background, credentials and references;
- Have the terms of the partnership and the actions involved to be as clear as possible – in writing is even better;
- Being able to verify that the actions involved are being carried out in the correct and expected way.
With these clearer aspects, it is possible to practice trust, based on a concrete assessment of transparency and actions taken. Thus, it is easier to overcome the trust difficulties and it enables you to create good partnerships with the people around you.