How To Be An Outstanding Business Partner    

small business partnerships




6.   Be fully transparent on any potential conflicts of interest.  

Assets that are created together, such as articles, books, trainings, or presentation, both will share in the intellectual assets rights . 

If you are going to reuse assets in another way- make sure this is agreed upon by your partner beforehand. 

Here I also recommend the agreement be documented to ensure no mis-understandings later. Again, a simple email may be enough for simple projects.

7.   Be supportive: 

During the project and after the project is complete, show your partner they are valued, trusted and the working experience was rewarding.    

8.   Get the money expectations “right”.

if your joint project has a financial component, either with shared costs or shared revenues, have a  written contract,  that clearly spell out the financial components, even for small projects. 

It’s important for your partner to feel the cost or pay distribution is equitable.  Nothing spoils a partnership faster than one of the partners feeling they have been “taken” by the other.

9.   Share in the Recognition. 

This applies to both public or private recognition, but especially for public recognition of a joint project. 

Always recognize your partner’s contribution and don’t seek more recognition for yourself than others .     

While I strongly believe that modeling the partnership relationship you want, will in turn, be replicated, there will be times when this will not occur. 

It only takes one toxic person to destroy the partnership with behavior that is manipulative and untrustworthy.

In those cases, finish the project as quickly as possible. Learn how to catch these behaviors earlier, and move on. 

Great partnerships are not only necessary in business, but extremely satisfying and  rewarding. It's worth the effort.    

Related articles:

Partnerships, Commercial and Strategic Benefits

A Once In a Lifetime Story of Digital Transformation In Education

Eli Mendoza on Equity and Financing [video]


About the author

Maria Villar

Maria Villar is an information technology expert and a vice president at SAP, a global software company, with responsibility over the firm’s data management strategy & governance . She and Theresa Kushner co-write a regular column to They are co-authors of Managing Your Business Data: From Chaos to Confidence, published by Racom Books in 2008. Villar was recognized in Hispanic Business Magazine as one of the Top 100 Influential Hispanics, and received the Distinguished Hispanic IT Executive award from Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Conference.