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5 Dos and Don’ts When Starting a Business With a Friend

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Friends are an essential part of our lives. They’re the people who help us overcome hardships and achieve our goals during childhood, youth, and adulthood. But can you start a business with a friend and be successful? We all know how friendships work. You get used to and take liberties with each other. There’s almost no end to the number of times you’ll “let it slide” when your friend makes a mistake.

Is any of that good for business? As you may know, starting a business requires you to be organized, creative, and focused. You need to know all the risks and be prepared to make some sacrifices along the way. Your potential customers need you to offer a better product or service than your competitors.

So, you may be wondering whether your friend can really be a good business partner. The truth is, it can either work or not. If you want to successfully start a business with a friend, here are some important dos and don’ts to keep in mind:

1. Assess each other’s skills and be honest

It could be that your friend said they’re skilled in something. And maybe you saw them do the thing and liked it. But have you thought about what other people think? It’s easy to oversee faults in your friend’s work because of the connection you have. You want to be loyal to them. And so, you might ignore any flaws you spot hoping they’ll do better next time.

But it can be quite hard to do better when you don’t know the areas to improve on. So, it’s best to be straightforward with your friends when assessing their skills. You could even involve a third party to help judge your competency and compatibility as business partners.

2. Clearly understand each other’s roles

It can be quite stressful when either of you has to do a bunch of things for the business. The best approach is when each one has been assigned specific roles. It’s good to base the responsibilities on your strengths and skills. And that’s why you need a friend with different but essential skills when starting a specific business.

When you’ve established who will be doing what, leave them to it. Don’t keep observing and trying to improve what your business partner does. That’s unless they really need your help. You can then update each other of your progress later on. You could use the necessary collaboration and information-sharing tools for this purpose or catch up from time to time.

“A business absolutely devoted to service will have one worry about profits. They will be embarrassingly large.” – Henry Ford

3. Record everything

Business can have conflicts related to investments, roles, and other things. If you don’t put it in writing, it becomes hard to know who is right. It could be that one of you invested more money than the other. Or, one of you has a superior role in decision making. When either of you makes a mistake, you can easily go back to the records and resolve the issue in no time.

Aside from who does what or invested which amount of money, you need an actual business plan written. It includes your vision of where you want your business to be in a particular number of years plus the steps to get there. It’s a good idea to involve a lawyer who specializes in business matters. They’ll help you prepare the required documents to successfully run a business as partners.

4. Don’t bring play into work

It isn’t bad to have a bit of fun while at work. In fact, being happy is necessary for enhanced productivity. But the idea is not to overdo it. You could establish a protocol where certain things can’t be done at work. If anyone breaks the rules, they have to undergo some sort of workplace punishment. This way there’ll be less instances of being late, absenteeism, low-quality work, and other undesirable behaviors.

Better yet, you could have a reward strategy where someone gets monetary or other rewards for their good work. This kind of motivation works well most of the time. You and your friend/business partner will work hard to get such benefits.

5. Don’t let business affect your friendship

While we’ve been exploring what you need to do to have a successful business with a friend, it’s essential to maintain your friendship. Don’t be too focused on business that you barely have time to be there for each other.

You need hours or days off to share personal matters that you’ve been avoiding because it was business time. Joke, laugh, and do anything else you used to engage in as friends.

And because the failure of a business isn’t uncommon, you’ll still have your friendship intact in case it happens. You could even start a new business without worries while fixing the missteps you previously made.

It’s possible to start a successful business with your friend as a partner. Many brands, big and small, have done it. You can do it too if you follow the best practices of having a friend for a business partner. In short, separate friendship from business but don’t forget to water the former too.

Mike Stuzzi is an online entrepreneur and blogger who helps people around the world make extra money and manage their finances effectively. He has started a number of successful online businesses and intends to help his readers achieve the same. He believes there’s a lot anyone can learn about money. Check out his blog themoneygalileo.com for tips and resources to become money-minded, boost your income, and practice proper money management. Connect with Mike here.

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20 Ways You Can Become a Powerful Communicator

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Emile Steenveld Speaker and Coach

Some people seem to naturally know how to effectively communicate in a group setting. They can express themselves clearly and listen attentively without dominating the conversation.

Being a powerful communicator is important for several reasons, including building and maintaining relationships, achieving goals, resolving conflicts, improving productivity, leading and influencing others, advancing in your career, expressing yourself more confidently and authentically, and improving your mental and emotional well-being. Effective communication is an essential life skill that can benefit you in all aspects of your life.

But, don’t worry if you don’t naturally possess this skill, as effective communication is something that can be developed with practice, planning and preparation.
 

1.  Listen actively: Practice active listening by giving your full attention to the speaker and responding to what they are saying.

 

2. Use “I” statements: Speak from your own perspective and avoid placing blame or making accusations.

 

3. Avoid assumptions: Don’t make assumptions about what the other person is thinking or feeling.

 

4. Be clear: Express your thoughts and feelings clearly and concisely by getting to the point and avoid using jargon or overly complex language.

 

5. Show empathy: Show that you understand and care about the other person’s feelings.

 

6. Offer valuable insights: When speaking in a group, provide a valuable takeaway or actionable item that people can walk away with.

 

7. Be an active listener: Listen attentively and respond accordingly, incorporating your points into the conversation.

 

8. Choose the right time: Pick the most opportune time to speak to ensure that you have the group’s attention and can deliver your message without interruption.

 

9. Be the unifying voice: Step in and unify the group’s thoughts to calm down the discussion and insert your point effectively.

 

10. Keep responses concise: Keep responses short and to the point to show respect for others’ time.

 

11. Avoid unnecessary comments: Avoid commenting on everything and only speak when you have something important to say.

 

12. Cut the fluff: Avoid being long-winded and get straight to the point.

 

13. Prepare ahead of time: Sort out your points and practice them before speaking in a group.

 

14. Smile and be positive: Smile and nod along as others speak, to build a positive relationship and be respected when it’s your turn to speak.

 

15. Take responsibility: Take responsibility for your own actions and feelings.

 

16. Ask questions: Ask questions to clarify any confusion or misunderstandings.

 

17. Avoid interrupting: Allow the other person to finish speaking without interruption.

 

18. Practice active listening: Repeat what the other person said to ensure you have understood correctly.

 

19. Use your body language too: Use nonverbal cues such as eye contact, facial expressions, and body language to convey your message and build rapport.

 

20. Be aware of the tone of your voice: it should be calm and assertive, not aggressive or passive.

 

By keeping these tips in mind, you can improve your communication skills and become a more powerful communicator, which can help you build better relationships, achieve your goals, and lead a more fulfilling life.

I you want to learn how to become more confident in life then you can join my weekly mentorship calls and 40+ online workshops at AweBliss.com so you can master your life with more success.

 
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