When I say choose your partners carefully I am talking about in business. I think it is maybe more important in business than in your personal life! Rarely in your personal life is there a contract to think about.
Each partner, no matter how big or small, has a role to play in a business. When a new partner comes in that role has to be defined. And, there has to be some way of making sure that the partner DOES what it expected of them.
Small businesses do not only require injections of cash. In one sense finding financial contributors is easy. You are only looking for one thing: money.
But finding a partner that will contribute what is really needed to make a small business work (ie experience and an expansion of your circle of contacts) is much more difficult. Beware of investors who promise to be the latter, active type, but in fact really only want to be the former, passive type. The biggest risk is that you will give em the benefit of the doubt and skew your terms in hoping to attract such an active participating investor.
The problem lies in this: what do you do if that partner does nothing?
I don’t have a solution here. Except to offer that both sides of a partnership need targets and goals and if neither side makes an honest effort at going after those goals then perhaps a dissolution or renegotiation is in order.
Seems only fair. If you are not going to do what you promised or offered then the terms should change.
So – choose your business partners carefully.