Should you start a business with a friend?

A good friendship doesn't always equal a good business partnership. Here are a few tips to make sure you're on the right track.

Starting your own business is a great way to earn extra money if you put in the work and do the research. Sometimes, when bouncing ideas off a friend, you might find out that you two have similar ideas and thoughts about a business idea. This could lead to you forming a partnership, which is all good and well... But try not to jump into a partnership solely based on the fact that you get along well.

Rather consider implementing these tips to get you started:

Agree on each of your responsibilities
If you want to open a T-shirt company, for example, and you are more creative than business-minded, suggest that you be more involved in the design process. If your friend has extensive knowledge in business, they could be responsible for the numbers side of things.  It’s important to spread the work load evenly so one person is not doing more than the other and starts resenting the partnership.

Talk about your needs and expectations for the business
Together you have to decide what you want and need for the business. Discuss things like where you see the business going and what you would like from your working relationship. Don’t forget to also talk about your business plan and timelines for growth. To avoid any mishaps later down the line you have to be certain that you two are on the same page from day one.

It’s all about communication  
What’s communication like between you and your friend? As with any relationship, communication is key. Of course there will be times when you and your business partner will disagree; however, it’s important to talk about everything until you reach a solution. Talk to each other about how you will handle those situations in terms of feedback to one another – will you arrange a meeting to discuss the problems and solutions or will you just let it go? It’s a good idea to set up regular weekly meetings to discuss the projects and tasks that were tackled that week.

While you may get along very well with your friend, business could bring out a whole new side to both of you. Talk about the above topics before leaping into a business partnership to ensure you’re doing what’s best for both of you.