Starting a company together: That’s how you do it

Start a business with a friend If you’ve never fantasized about starting your own business, are you really friends? It often happens that two or more friends go on business together.

Before you really start, it is useful to find out whether you can work well together at all.

Starting a business together puts a lot of pressure on a friendship. For example, try to organize something together first.

Start a business with your partner

Hardly anyone knows you as well as your own partner. It used to be a very logical step to set up a company together. In some industries, it is still common for spouses to do business together. Consider, for example, farms, catering establishments, and shops. Do you want to start a business together with your partner? Then try to monitor the balance between work and private life from the start. It is very tempting to talk a little longer about what is happening at work, but are you ever really free?

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Start a business with a stranger

Another option is to start a business with a ‘stranger’. This could be someone you meet at a network meeting, for example. Also, think of online groups on Facebook and LinkedIn. Look up your candidate’s company at the Chamber of Commerce and request the annual accounts. This way you have insight into the financial situation. If you want to start a business with someone you don’t know at all, the preliminary phase is even more important. So take the time to get to know each other. Are you compatible? Just like on a first date, it’s a good step to have a cup of coffee first. Advantages and disadvantages starting together As with any major decision, starting a business together have its advantages and disadvantages.

Consider the benefits: More start-up capital

You are stronger towards customers Always a sparring partner You motivate each other to persevere Together you have more knowledge and a larger network There are of course also disadvantages: A business disagreement can turn into a private row You have to consult with each decision and always agree Your business partner’s mistakes also affect you Starting a business together; what do you have to record? If you enter into a collaboration, it is important that you make agreements and record them. You do not want to have a discussion about money or company resources, which will inevitably lead to a fight. You record these agreements in a company contract. In any case, you record: What everyone’s input is (money, company resources)

Demarcation of tasks or decisions

What the possible consequences are in case of illness Dealing with conflict The agreements on termination of the collaboration. The reward: do you divide everything equally, or does the person who brings in all new customers get a bonus? Record everything as explicitly as possible. This may seem like an exaggeration if you know your business partner really well, but it will prevent the two of you from arguing in the future. Discuss the strategies you will follow along with advertising on Google.

My advice is to get to know your intended business partner better first. You can do this by tackling a project together. This way you find out what you can expect from each other and whether you complement each other. Starting a company together because you happen to know each other is the wrong argument. There is a risk that after some time you will discover that the necessary click is missing.”

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