The possibility of failure is a nightmare that chases every entrepreneur. In 2014 alone, this fear became real for 80% of all small businesses owners. Many reasons can make a small business flounder in its first, third, or even fifth year. Financial challenges, lack of a differentiated value proposition and even unforeseen disasters like floods contribute to the downfall.
Conflict between business partners is another often-cited reason for companies to close their doors. Due to this fact, you need to be extra vigilant when looking for a tech entrepreneur partner. Here are some attributes you should weigh before making a decision.
1. Financial Stability
Whenever entrepreneurs are in the middle of finding a business partner, they can get hung up on who brings money to the table. While capitalizing the business is a critical matter that needs due consideration, it is not as mission-critical as the financial health of your potential business partner.
If your potential tech entrepreneur partner is in the middle of a financial crisis it may be worth re-considering their suitability. A partner who is struggling to make ends meet may not give your startup the sole focus it needs to survive in its infancy. Worse still, if at any point they find themselves with their backs pressed to the wall they might be susceptible to financial fraud to survive.
Another aspect of assessing this trait is whether their financial crisis is due to a character issue. A potential partner who can’t manage their personal finances will most likely mishandle company finances as well since it calls for the same kind of discipline.
2. Complementing Strengths
You and your potential tech entrepreneur partner ought to be strong in the area where the other is weak for your firm to thrive. One of the cardinal tips for entrepreneurs in the tech arena is to pair up as a technical and a non-technical founder. If you are a computer whiz, then you need a partner who thrives at business development and marketing. The reverse also applies.
Part of the reason why you need a business partner who’s strong in the areas you’re weak in is to help you focus. Launching a startup is extremely tough and any distraction can sink the business. When you’re able to plow all your tech entrepreneur resources into what you do best, your firm’s odds of survival shoot up. During tough times a partner will help you remain objective in your weak areas so that you can ultimately pull through.
3. Value Alignment
Many business wrangles come about due to a fundamental difference in how partners see the world and approach it. When you are scouting for a tech entrepreneur partner you must zero in on whether you share similar values relating to the firm. Your goals and theirs have to complement each other for you to work in unison. If you find that there is a danger of having widely varying goals then assess whether there is a common point that can align your interests.
If your potential partner is a personal friend or family member, then you need to avoid one of the most common entrepreneur mistakes: glossing over your alignment. Just because there is a preceding personal relationship does not necessarily mean that it makes for good business relations.
Another tip for the tech entrepreneur looking to partner up is to not have ambiguous responsibilities. You need to clearly define every partner’s responsibilities and key deliverables on paper. That clarity will help run the business with minimal friction due to crossed boundaries and inaction.
Don’t Fall for the Wrong Tech Entrepreneur Partner
Small businesses fail for many reasons and one of them is partner misalignment. There are critical benefits to working with a business partner but only if you pair with the right one. Focus on interpersonal and capacity-related traits to identify the best tech entrepreneur partner for your business.