RE: Starting a business

Subject: RE: Starting a business
From: "Swallow, William" <WSwallow -at- courion -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 13:42:32 -0400

:: Unfortunately, the remaining partner is a slug and the
:: business would run just as well without him. My father
:: doesn't like working with him even though he is his cousin.
:: The problem is just how much money it will take to buy him
:: out now that the company is successful.

Partners *can* be booted. I've seen it happen. You just have to get the
firepower to tactfully get the partner's resignation. I personally haven't
done this, but after seeing it done a few times, I now know how tactfully it
can be done. Of course, it helps to have the pressure come from the board of
directors, if the company has a board...

:: My advice, don't have any partners.

Though I understand your stance based on your father's experience, I offer
alternate advice: Choose your partners wisely. A drinking buddy from college
or a golf partner might not make the best partner. Another business
executive or technology expert whom you've conversed with in the past might
work out better. I've seen several businesses fail because of partnerships
kindled by friendship. Though I don't doubt that some business partnerships
stemming form friendships work out for the best, there are many that fail
due to sour grapes (friendship quarrels). Also, I would suggest that each
partner bring unique and beneficial talents to the company. A partnership of
three marketing VPs might work out well for a marketing consulting shop, but
outside of that it's probably not going to fly. You want your company's
skills to be well-rounded, and the power in that company to be
evenly-distributed throughout those skill areas.

Just my thoughts. I'm not an expert on these matters by any means, else I'd
have started my own business years ago and would be currently writing from
my retirement bungalow in Sint Maarten. ;)

Technical Writer
1881 Worcester Road
Framingham, Mass. 01701
T E L * 508-879-8400 x316
F A X * 508-879-8500


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