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How to prevent disputes between business partners

Starting a new company is full of challenges, especially if you are sharing the business with a partner. You have to find a way to maintain the relationship while keeping the company afloat in the current economy.

Luckily, there are ways to keep tension away from your business partnership and keep your business running smoothly.

Prepare before making the partnership official

Partnerships are usually beneficial for both parties. However, there are circumstances when a business partnership benefits one person over another. It makes it crucial for business owners to know who they are partnering with and prepare a written agreement before making the partnership official. Some business owners may go as far as conducting background checks before any partnership.

If you want to prepare a partnership agreement, include details such as:

  • The role of each partner
  • The duties of each partner
  • The division of compensation or distributions
  • The decision-making process
  • How to end the partnership if there is no dispute resolution

Understand the difference between disagreements and disputes

There will be several opportunities where business partners disagree, whether it is on pricing, distribution, marketing strategy, etc. However, disagreements do not necessarily equate to disputes. There are many times where conflict results in the best solutions because each partner brings new ideas to the company.

You need to make sure that you understand when you need to settle or fight on a disagreement. Do not let a slight difference ruin your business’s vision. You can try to find a compromise or hear out your partner’s viewpoint. It may work better for your long-term goals.

Arrange a discussion before potential disputes

If a disagreement is about to turn into an argument, have a private conversation with your partner. Each partner can take time to share their opinions in a relaxed environment and give insight into the current situation. You want to focus less on winning and more on resolving the disagreement in a peaceful manner.

If a private conversation does not work, consider involving a third party or a mediator to determine the best solution for your conflict. Sometimes a third party brings new information that neither partner can see.

There are circumstances where a dispute is inevitable, so consider going to court to resolve the issue before it takes a significant toll on your business and your employees.

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