Would you take your friends as business partners?

Philippines
November 30, 2009 1:45am CST
I have just incorporated a company with my friends as co-incorporators. Many have advised me against it. They told me that it would be a bad idea as I could lose them because of money matters. In my case, I chose them as my business partners because I trust them and I enjoy working with them. I believe that trust and open communication are the key ingredients to any business or personal relationships. How about you, would you choose your friends as business partners? Do you have any advice for us to strengthen the friendship as well as nurture our business partnership?
6 people like this
33 responses
@aerous (13474)
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
In my opinion; Partnership is not a bad idea but good. Because you can rely of the partnership that your friend did not do anything to cheat you on the matter. You your friends and no secret being hiding if in-case there is an accountability in your business. I think my advice to strengthen your friendship is to treat one another as you did when your not in business. Because your treat one another as business partner. Your friendship be loss due to your concentration about the business not for friendship anymore. That is the time you think what people say partnership with friends is bad...Have a nice day!
• Philippines
2 Dec 09
Hi. Thanks for reminding me to continuously treat my friends-turned-business partners as my "treasured friends." This will surely guide me in defining which is more important in the long run. Many thanks aerous.
@aerous (13474)
• Philippines
2 Dec 09
Don't mind about it, soledad. Because it's my pleasure to give my views on what you are asking for. It is really an important that we friends that is common in our goal. Partnering business with your friend is really good and I don't see any bad in that way? What business you and your partner have? May i apply for a jobs(joke)...Have a nice day!
• Philippines
3 Dec 09
My friends and I have opened a consulting/outsourcing company. Initially, we will be providing accounting-related services.
• Indonesia
30 Nov 09
if friend becomes bussiness partner will have some possibility. first, relation remained good friends, bussiness is also going well. the second, relation remained good friend but bussiness is not good. third, teh relationship with friend is not good, but bussiness went well. fourth, relationship with friend are not going well, bussiness is going not well too. thats depend on the people who involeved in it. if he can keep both bussiness or friend good or not.
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
We are really hoping for the best to happen. But I believe that we are also preparing for the worst. Business is really about taking risks. Thanks for the advice.
1 person likes this
• Indonesia
1 Dec 09
one question we need to consider. whether our bussiness will go better if someone else becomes our bussiness partner? i dont think so. it all depend on mutual agreement.
• Philippines
2 Dec 09
I agree. I'm thankful that we are sharing mutual interest and passion in having the kind of business we have started. We are all hoping that we could maintain the good friendship even when the going gets tough. We know that we are going to put our friendship to test by becoming business partners, but we are all willing to take the risk. Have a blessed day seberoteb. Many thanks.
@cerebellum (3871)
• United States
2 Dec 09
Friends as partners could be a good thing as long as you all agree up front on certain things. If there is a problem later, you might not want to say anything and take a chance on your friendship. You should try and have a contract with everything spelled out so there is no questions later. I think you also need to know their work ethics and how they handle stress.
2 people like this
• Philippines
2 Dec 09
Hi. Most of us have been workmates and friends for three to six years now. But we know that this is not an assurance for success of our business. You are right, we have to continuously know and understand the work ethics of one another. And that we have to continuously ensure proper documentation of all transactions and agreements. Sometimes, we tend to be lenient on this matter as we are comfortable with one another. I should always bear this in mind. Many thanks.
• United States
2 Dec 09
I hope it works out well for you. Good Luck!!!
1 person likes this
@jkcokley (267)
• United States
1 Dec 09
I would advise against it although I have not done it myself. I would suggest that you have the all the legal stuff handled by a very good lawyer. You want to protect your interest should one of your Friends decide they no longer want to be your friend and take controling interst in your company that you started with your idea. Yes, I believe in trusting my friends but I also believe business is business. What if your Friend made a really bad Business decision that cost the company large sums of money? Would you still be friends? Key ingredients to any business are the expertize of every individual in that company, if friendship happens to come with it find but is not a good mix when it comes to partnership.
• Philippines
2 Dec 09
Hmm, you've raised a good point about the importance of having a good lawyer handling our legal stuff. My husband is a lawyer but I seldom consulted business matters to him because of possible conflict of interest. You are right, we should consider engaging the services of independent legal adviser in the near future.
@jkcokley (267)
• United States
2 Dec 09
Glad to of service. Have a great night.
1 person likes this
@jambi462 (4598)
• United States
2 Dec 09
Well yeah there are definitely some friends that I would want to take as business partners because I love to hang out with my friends. When I'm around my group of friends it helps us to get a lot of really good ideas flowing and I think that we could really create a great business or at least start to cultivate some good brain storms and ideas.
2 people like this
• Philippines
3 Dec 09
That's good to know. I also feel the same way with my friends. Many thanks for sharing your ideas.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
I have nothing against friends becoming business partners. But you must realize that you are taking a very great risk, not only are you taking a big risk in your business venture but you are also taking a big risk in your friendship. You will literally test your friendship. I have gone into several business ventures with my friends and I am about to enter into another business with a different group of friends. If I need a business partner, I will look for someone I trust, and the only people I trust are my friends... but I am very careful in choosing which friend I would like to become a business partner. I have lost a few friends because of disagreements concerning the business. My advice, make it clear from the very first business meeting of what contribution or work is expected from each one of you and how each of you will be compensated. Everyone must have a whole lot of patience and understanding. Draw the line between business matters from personal matters, do not mix it up! Remember, if you loose money, you can earn it back but if you loose a friend... that's a different story... Good Luck with your new biz!
• Philippines
2 Dec 09
Hi. I like your reminder that "monetary loses could be earned back as against friendships which might be lost forever." Many thanks.
@derek_a (10902)
1 Dec 09
I may take a close friend as a business partner, but never any member of my own family. Although we are very close, I have been done before and there are nearly always disagreements. I think the best business partner is oneself, so I have nearly always worked alone. If I want business advice I would pay a professional, much cheaper than sharing the profits with a partner. Not everybody is like me however, and I guess, like I did, the only way you would know if it work out with a friend in business is to try it out. But I would strongly advise getting a legal agreement and agreeing on some ground rules from the very beginning. - Derek
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
I guess we have the same opinion about not having business with family members. I could take risks having business with good friends than with family members.
@jlamela (4909)
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
I think it's okay to have friends as business partners for as long as they are business minded people. As business partners you should have a mutual trust and respects and should never broke each other's trust. Just try to separate the friend and business relationships and if any one of them are making decisions not in accordance with the business policy then don't hesitate to talk to them.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
Separating friendship and business relationships would be very hard, but we are all willing to give it a try. Thanks for the advice.
1 Dec 09
First of all, I want you to be at ease with my little advice. I have a little experience and knowledge on these matters being a CEO. I run two companies and treat everyone with cordiality regardless of their rank...outside business!During office hours...everyone should be at his or her post. Friends are friends...Business is business and sometimes they don't blend well. I do not know your friends personally, but if they share interests as you and you can exchange ideas at a top-level conversation then you may as well consider them as co-incorporators. In business, you have to set you guidelines in black and white and must be fully understand by all incorporators. Set the rules especially on matter involving monetary issues. Money can sometimes be the root of evil and can shatter your friendship as well as dissolve the business. Be professional in your dealings and this must also be observed by your friends. During business hours, forget you are friends. After business, be what you are again to one another. In so doing, the matters involving business can always be treated at its most appropriate degree. Good luck to you and your friends.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
You are so generous to share your personal business experiences with me. I believe you're right about professionalism. I will always remember your tips on dealing with different kinds of people affecting our businesses. Thank you so much.
• India
1 Dec 09
my opinion is it depends on the people who join their hands.. as far as im concerned it is ok if all you people work towards a same goal and adjust with each other.. it is difficult to maintain both friendship and business in tough times unless you all have good understanding. im either not against it or supporting it.. i only can say your travelling in a risky way. also remember that if everyone gives more value for friendship then money cant break your relationship.. i wish you all success in future for both your business as well as friendship
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
You have a good point - during the tough times, we should give more value to friendship than anything else. Thanks for the advice and good wishes.
• India
1 Dec 09
You are not wrong but I don't prefer this. I think, money spoils the relationship and friends or relatives should not be included in such business. Now that you have already chosen your friends as business partner, try to keep the partnership and friendship separate from each other. Tomorrow if some misunderstanding happens in your business then save your other relation from being destructed. It's too difficult but all the best.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
I will keep your advice in mind. Thank you so much.
@sublime03 (1811)
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
I am about to start a partnership with a good friend of mine and my take on this is it really depends on the friend that you choose. You would not put yourself into dealing with a person who is not trusting or to whom you know would not work hard as you do. So it is a matter of a good decision also regarding who to choose as business partners. I intend to keep my very good friends as business partners the ones who I know very well would do good as my partner and not just for money matters.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
I believe that my friends and I have mutual trusts and interests on the type of business we have entered. I wish you all the best in your business.
@happy6162 (3011)
• United States
1 Dec 09
If you and the friends trust each other than I think it is a good idea to take them as a partner in a business. There are lots of businesses that friends have started together which are very successful and there are some that are not. Yes if I had a business I wanted to start and needed a partner I would go to my friends first.
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
Oh, that's really good to know. Thanks for the advice.
@doniep (99)
• Philippines
30 Nov 09
It depends upon what type of business you will make, and what kind of friends you have. Business is a good idea, but it can be a bad one if you do not know how to run it well. It takes a lot of effort and determination to make the business prosper. When it comes to business with a partner, you should make sure that you know well and trust well who you are having a business with. Since it needs a great harmoniuos rapport and patience when it comes to business. Having a business is not that easy. Business has its ups and downs, it is like a circle that sometimes you are up and sometimes you are down. But with will and determination it will be a successful business.
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
All of us have the same profession and our business is very much related to it. We are doing our best to be able to help one another in running the different aspects of the business. We're aware that running the business is very much different from doing the profession itself. Thanks for the advice.
@kelly10 (678)
30 Nov 09
Well two sayings come to mind right now - Don't mix business with pleasure, Neither a borrower or a lender be, All I have ever heard is to never go into business, of any sort, with friends and/or family. It is easier to work with them as you already know them and trust them but if you fall out in business you have ruined your friendship/relationship. Is it worth long term?
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
For now, we are all willing to take risks. Sometimes, when we don't take risks - we risk even more. Thanks for sharing your honest opinion.
@lmcueva (169)
• Philippines
30 Nov 09
I'm currently running a small business with my two friends. So far we're doing great, and we do have the occasional arguments which I find healthy for this kind of relationship. We are honest to each other, and that's what I believe gives us a great bond. My cousin, however, ventured into a business with a friend and it did not turn out so well, unfortunately. I do hope that what we have now will just be stronger as we go along this business. And to do that, open and honest communication is key, plus the teamwork and cooperation. As individuals, we should learn how to compromise, but as a group, synergize and make the most of what we have.
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
You are right - life is about learning how to come up with a compromise. We may not be able to influence our business partners at all times but what's important is that we've been honest and open-minded. Thanks for sharing your experience.
• United Kingdom
30 Nov 09
I think that the saying is, it's a bad thing to enter into a business partnership with friends! What if it doesn't work out? Do you still retain the friendship? I think it's great to have good friends but to go into business with them is probably a bad idea. That's not to say that it couldn't work but I'm thinking that there's potentially a lot of risk involved. The advantage of going into business with a friend is the fact that you know this person quite well and you may get on quite well as well. Anyway, it's better to be safe than sorry. Andrew
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
When we finally agreed to go on with the business, we know that we are taking a lot of risks. But all of us are willing to bite the bullet, hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Thanks for the advice.
1 person likes this
30 Nov 09
actually, my friends & I are planning to have our own business. I know that some may say that it's a bad idea because of several issues that may come up and that the line between professionals will be brocken because of friendship. But I do trust my friends and that there are non other persons whom I like to share and have business with. Maybe if it's a family member. I think, that would be more difficult and maybe, I won't divulge myself in doing a business with a family member.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
That's good to hear. I wish the best for you and your friends' upcoming business.
1 person likes this
@gabs8513 (48715)
• United Kingdom
30 Nov 09
As long as you have both gone with into this with both eyes and know you can handle it together then there should be no Problems at all, and yes I would as long as we talked it over well and know what we are letting ourselves into I can see no problem specially when you already know you work well with this Person and communicate Good Luck to you both
2 people like this
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
We have tried our best to weigh the pros and cons of opening the business. Thanks for sharing.
1 person likes this
@SHAMRACK (8384)
• India
30 Nov 09
Dear friend, I do not see anything wrong provided it goes smoothly. I started a small resort with partnership with my friend. It went well and we are still continuing a good relationships as goods and best friends. May some of things we have compromise, I hope the major problems arises with the dealing of cash. We both are liberal in cash while dealing it and we both compromise each other even if one of us have face any lose.
• Philippines
1 Dec 09
It's good to know that your resort business with a friend went well. Our business operation is yet to begin. I really hope we could be successful just like you and your friend.
1 person likes this