How to swim with sharks …and not get eaten

Every successful business that I’ve ever known uses partnerships.

It’s a force multiplier and when done well can become a massive accelerator for your business. 

The key is to setup the arrangement well…meaning you get value from it, as does your partner.

I was having a public discussion with a person worried about doing business with a much larger fish…maybe even a shark.  

(He’s in a smaller market position, and there’s an opportunity to work with a big player).

It’s much easier to expand and work with a partner who elevates your business than building from the bottom up.

He’s worried about getting his system consumed by the shark.  (So, perception is there’s risk on both sides).

But that’s business.

Here was the follow-up question I got asked by Roxann: 

“are there any things to know to prevent getting eaten by someone smarter and more business savvy?”

My response for your plotting mind to devour…

There’s a thousand ways to skin a deal. Here’s a few things I use:

1) Don’t be needy.

2) If you don’t like the person, don’t do business with them.

3) Have a contract and have it reviewed (depends on commitments here).  A Key strategy when working with a big player, you get a lot more long term benefit so terms must favor them in the near. 

4) They’ll see you as a threat (and you are but there’s enough clients/business for everyone).

5) Two minds working together raise the ceiling within both businesses.

6) Small hidden projects lead to big public ones, and do not expose you to too much risk

7) Everything’s peachy until the first disagreement (See #3).

Have fun. Work with people you like. Write it down and communicate.

Realize you’re likely to get burned at some point, and more than once. But we’re in business. Which means risk is something we must be comfortable with, and balance against the reward.

Start with a meal (or a virtual coffee) and go from there…

Brandon “Always be scheming” Pugsley

P.S. If you’d like me to have a look at a campaign, or see what “lost revenue” can be found without advertising….

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