How To Rebuild a Relationship With a Business Partner

Working alongside a business partner when launching a startup can be highly advantageous. As time moves forward, though, that person could become sullen and frustrated. What was previously a complementary relationship is becoming toxic and adversarial. The good news is there are ways of turning the situation around and bringing it back to what it once was. With a bit of effort, you’ll both be feeling positive once more.

Create a Mission Statement

Young businesses should always have a concrete goal in mind. Ideally, entrepreneurs define one before opening their doors. This vital step can get lost in the whirlwind of activity that comes with setting up shop. Lacking a clear objective sometimes leaves people feeling like they’re spinning their wheels. Correct this by sitting together and discussing what you want to accomplish. Once done, memorialize your thoughts in writing. Doing this often reveals varying understandings that cry out for resolution; hashing out these differences will help pave the way forward.

Define Responsibilities

Creating a startup is an enormous amount of work. One reason for having a business partner is that you don’t need to do everything yourself. If you haven’t determined who should take care of what responsibility, you might wind up duplicating efforts. Avoid this by splitting duties. Take turns claiming them, writing them in a two-column list as you do so. As a visual tool, this should help you assess the fairness of what you’re deciding. Evenly share tasks both in quantity as well as desirability. Create an official schedule that adds clarity to your agreement.

Start Collaborating

Perhaps the source of your associate’s negativity is that your contributions are dominating. Remedy this by working to shape your venture together. Ask for input on the most vital aspects of your business, especially those you haven’t thoroughly analyzed. Brainstorm products and services that could boost your customer base, and let your partner take charge of bringing these projects to fruition. Watch your language when discussing plans; avoid being dismissive or insulting. When an idea strikes you as worthwhile, mention that you think so. Address concepts you feel are problematic in a manner that suggests they should be refined rather than discarded.

Having a business partner can be helpful when running an enterprise. When that relationship grows disagreeable, though, it turns into a hindrance. Whether in the working world or elsewhere, repairing relationships requires energy. Take the right approach, and you can mend any interpersonal conflict that stands in your way.