The Guide to Successful Business Partnerships by Ian Brooks and Noel Davies is an invaluable source of practical and useful information for anyone contemplating entering into a business partnership.
I'd recommend reading this book first to save a lot of hassles later on.
The Guide to Successful Business Partnerships
By Ian Brooks and Noel Davies
This book is a rarity amongst the ‘how to do business’ books available on bookshelves at the moment - it is realistic, down to earth and free of hype and hyperbole and its practical advice is spot-on and on-topic all the way.
The blurb on the back of the book describes it as easy to read, and it really is. One of the first things that strikes me is how well the material is set out. The authors have opted for wide margins peppered with snippets of information, text boxes enclosing success tips and diagrams, and a clear, concise summary at the end of each chapter. Rather than being formulaic, these stylistic devices make it easy to work through the material and emphasise the salient points, making it easy to read and simple to use.
The book is so full of common sense that the reader begins to wonder why it is necessary, until they remember that common sense is profoundly uncommon when applied to relationships, which partnerships are. In dealings between people it is often helpful to have clear guidelines, and this is what is provided so ably by Brooks and Davies.
The authors draw on their combined 60 years of experience in business and business partnerships and their knowledge and understanding of the subject shows. They don’t need to blow their own trumpets or formulate ‘clever’ new business theories to get the reader’s attention. They simply tell it like it is and leave the reader to judge for themselves and utilise the information they provide.
They exhort the reader to ‘find someone who has similar dreams and aspirations, and who shares your beliefs and values’ and warn that ‘having different expectations is one of the biggest reasons partnerships are dissolved’.
The practical, down to earth advice they offer includes recommending clear thinking and planning and discussion of basic issues before entering into a partnership; choosing the right partner and the right structure; agreeing on the rules and roles within the partnership; and deciding how to handle conflict before it arises. They also offer advice on deciding where the business should be going and how the partnership might end right at the beginning of the process. Seven appendices at the end of the book offer information such as sample agreement documents, suggested house rules and rules for team briefings.
A realistic picture is painted of partnerships – acknowledging the pitfalls and risks as well as outlining the advantages and success that have been achieved. Everything that is provided in this book is useful and usable, making it a must-have for anyone considering entering into a business partnership now or in the near future.
Published by Brooks on Business, An imprint of Nahanni Publishing Limited, Auckland New Zealand, 2004 - 132 pages in Paperback