Will You Be My Business Partner?

Going into business with a partner is a lot like marriage. Finding the right business partner is just like dating. The last thing you ever want to do is jump into a financially committed “relationship” with someone you don’t know well. I’ve made that mistake more than once, and it can be devastating financially and emotionally.

Business partners are going to go through a lot together. That’s just the nature of business. The partnership will be tried, tested, stretched, pulled and stressed to the limit. Therefore, compatibility on multiple levels is crucial. Partners should be comparable in reliability, intelligence, financial stability and character. Those are the four big ones I’d focus on, but there are many more.

Don’t let the excitement of starting a new business cloud your judgment when considering a partner. I’ve seen many people make fatal decisions because of hope and inexperience.

Here are a few pointers for finding and maintaining a good partnership:

  • Family members don’t make good business partners. We’ve all heard it, but most of us ignored it until it was too late.
  • Make sure the risk is split fairly between partners. Financially lopsided partnerships experience even more pressure.
  • Don’t be afraid to run a background check. If I had done that with my very first partner, I would have saved myself a fortune.
  • Ask around town. A person’s reputation can tell a lot about them.
  • Clearly state the goals, duties and expectations of each partner (in writing!) before commencement of the business.
  • Create a strategy to maintain high levels of communication and interaction between the partners. Weekly or even daily meetings are a must.
  • Maintain non-business interactions as well. Periodic dinners and recreational events are great ways to ease any tension that may be present.

Remember that good partnerships can be beautiful while bad partnerships can be ugly and life altering. So tread carefully, don’t rush into things and always trust your intuition. You wouldn’t marry a stranger (I hope!), nor would you enter into one of the most important business relationships of your life without doing your due diligence. This is probaly the most important advice I could ever offer an entrepreneur.

(You can also find this article at MoreThanMary.com as well as more very helpful articles on life, fashion, fitness and travel.)

Audiobooks: No More Excuses Not to Read

Reading is important. I tell that to everyone. I read at least one book a week even though I don’t have the time. How you ask??

I recently discovered audiobooks on Itunes. They have a good selection and you can find more on Amazon as well. At first, I didn’t think I would enjoy listening to books rather than reading them. My mind changed quickly.

Listening to a book on your Ipod or phone is easy and convenient. It allows you to perform other tasks simultaneously as well, such as driving or working out.

I like to cycle often. Instead of listening to music during my workouts, I listen to books. Whenever I’m driving or doing a mundane task that requires little brain power, I listen to a book. It’s great and I’m learning so much!

I highly recommend it to everyone. You don’t have to worry about reading glasses, eye strain or books cluttering your shelves!

Busy Body Fitness Tip #1

Workout

A healthy mind requires a healthy body. That goes for everyone, whether they’re an entrepreneur or not. These days, most don’t have the time or energy to actually make it to the gym. They use that as an excuse for not working out.

But who says you need to workout in a gym?? You can turn your office, bedroom, living room or just about any other room into a temporary workout area.

Here’s what you need:

My workout routine consists of 15 minutes of jump rope to get my heart pumping, followed by 3 to 4 circuit training cycles consisting of:

  • Leg lifts
  • Push-ups
  • Regular sit ups (use your couch to anchor your feet)
  • Pull ups
  • Stationary lunges while holding dumbbells at side
  • Standing shoulder press with dumbbells
  • Bicep curls

Try not to rest in between exercises, but allow yourself 2-3 minutes of rest between circuits. As you progress you may add repetitions or weight to each exercise, but always remember quality or quantity. Ten repetitions in perfect form will be much harder and more beneficial than twenty repetitions in bad form.

Do this 3 – 4 times a week and I promise you will be feeling better and thinking clearer in less than a month.

The Pirates of Silicon Valley

piratesofsiliconvalley

I wanted to share one of my favorite movies with you. It’s definitely in my top 5! This is the true story about Bill Gates and Steve Jobs and their respective businesses. If you don’t already know the story, this movie will change the way you view a lot of things!

These guys are geniuses. There’s no arguing that. But I sure as hell would never turn my back on one of them if they had a knife in their hands.

Business can be cutthroat, especially if one plans to make it all the way to the top. This story does an amazing job of displaying that.

I’m sure you can find it on Netflix or in Blockbuster. Definitely worth the buy if you can find it on Amazon.