February 16, 2016 at 9:52 am #17219
Hi Andy and Bradley,
(Haven’t been able to use the message function, so thought I’d post in this forum. It kind of fits. . .)
I’m considering a business partner/collaborator for my course. I’d love any insight you can send my way!
If you feel okay sharing: How do you guys deal with the individual “intellectual property” you both brought to the making of this course? How do you share the investments and the profits? These things are important. Especially if you’re working with a friend.
SarahFebruary 16, 2016 at 12:20 pm #17249
I have (and still do) run 2 different businesses with 2 different close friends. A few of my biggest lessons have been:
– Don’t assume that because you are close friends you are on the same page with everything or assume you know what someone meant when they say something. Be super clear with communication and reaffirm in your own words what you think your partner said to them often to make sure you are taking the same meaning from the same words that they are.
– Make agreements super clear and straight forward from the start. It is easy to be lax with friends and say will figure that out later or talk about that later. This philosophy has cost me countless hours fixing mistakes because we were not actually on the same page with the agreement but assumed we were or that it would be easier to work out then it was. The clearer the initial agreements are the easier the conversations are when conflicts come up, especially when you have documents and e-mails you can go back and reference. I’ve had many incidents were I’ve been able to go back to earlier documents or saved e-mail threads when a conflict arises and been like “shit, I did say that, your right, ok…..) and vice versa with my partners. I’ve also lost countless hour to not having that reference and then having to work through why we both ended up with such different take away from the same conversation. The first example is much more fun and efficient then the second.
– Spend time thinking about what kinds of things your friend/partner might do or say that may trigger you and if you notice yourself feeling defensive or triggered have an open relationship with your partner where you can just hit pause and say, ok, sorry, I just realized I was getting triggered and thus what I just said was not said using my best words. This is why I got triggered and this what I actually wanted to say to you…. We’ve gotten really good at communications over the years and being transparent about where conflict might arise between us and tracking the root of it in both of us. This has been SO SO helpful and we waste WAY less time bickering about things now. We can easily hit pause, get to the root of the conflict, which is often just misinterpretation of how we think the other is perceiving something, then were back on track in less then 5 minutes rather then spending and hour trying to convince each other why they should see things our way when they actually already do we are just using different words to say the same thing.
Hope that made sense to you. Those have been huge for us. Hopefully Brad and Andy will address the financial side in greater depth.
Changing World ProjectFebruary 17, 2016 at 4:45 pm #17408
Bradley MorrisMountain Guide@bradleytmorris
I agree. Communication is key. Being really clear, writing things down and making agreements.
As for IP and profit sharing, @andyfreist and I are in it 50/50. We incorporated under Great eCourse Adventures inc so we have a home to grow from. Our other partners (friends) are basically working with us as contractors and in a sense are investing in the project by accepting partial payments now, and more later. We all see it as a long term investment of getting to work on kick ass projects together.
The biggest things I’d say are:
1. You need to get along great. Like, really love being together, talking, hanging out and working with each other. It’s gotta be fun, light, easy and enjoyable (even through the stress).
2. You need to have complimentary skill sets. Meaning, when you work together EVERYTHING is better.
3. You gotta be climbing the same mountain. Meaning, everyone on your team is fired up about the same vision, mission and project. As Chris said, be sure everyone’s on the same page with that vision before embarking up that mountain.
4. They need to be just as invested in the project as you. You’re going to pour everything you’ve got into this project and if they’re not fully committed, then that’s a window for them to walk away and leave you hanging. That always sucks. So really get honest with each other.
Ultimately, a business partnership is like a marriage. Don’t marry for the money. Make sure you you love them
Does this help?February 18, 2016 at 9:46 am #17461
SarahPAdventurer@SarahPFebruary 19, 2016 at 1:45 pm #17781
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