• Keeping Friends

In the Media – Becoming business partners with a best friend (Glamour.com)

Published: April 23, 2016 | Last Updated: April 23, 2016 By | 3 Replies Continue Reading
Glamour (logo)

Glamour (logo)

Glamour.com (screenshot)

Glamour.com (screenshot)

It can be so seductive to become partners with a best friend that logic and planning for the unexpected falls by the wayside.

The synergy between friends can generate sparks that lead to creative energy and excitement, strengthening the friendship.

While friends can often be successful at balancing a work partnership with their friendship, the arrangement can also be plagued by problems. That’s why it’s so important to think clearly before embarking on a business between friends.

Writing on Glamour.com, journalist Jillian Kramer spoke to a career expert and to The Friendship Doctor to answer the question, Should You Ever Start a Business With Your BFF? Her article also offers three rules for increasing the odds of success.

She writes:

Picture it: You’d energize each other with your on-point pep talks and your ’90s pop Spotify playlists. You’d bond over business card designs and celebrate successes with champagne—at 9 a.m., because your BFF does not judge. And when you took a business risk, there’d be no need to explain it, because your friend gets it…

But that oh-so-sweet vision of mixing friendship with business isn’t always what reality looks like. “Working together isn’t the same as being friends,” warns Levine, who adds that the friend you know may not be the business partner you expect.

In fact, your closeness can work against you—your familiarity may lead to a willingness to pick fights because you don’t fear repercussions. Plus, says Levine, “friends can feel so comfortable working side by side that they may begin to take advantage of one another—or, one or both friends may feel that the other isn’t pulling her weight and get resentful.” And that’s not good for your friendship or your business.

Read the Glamour article in its entirety here.

Have you had any experience going into business with a friend?

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Comments (3)

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  1. Salstarat says:

    If you DELIBERATELY wanted to sabotage a close personal friendship or set about to destroy a relationship with a member of your family, starting up a business with either one of them would be the PERFECT way to go about it! NEVER, EVER DO IT! NEVER! Business is business and relationships are relationships … they rarely intermingle successfully. The problem with going into business with relatives and/or friends is that there is ALWAYS the person who does all the hard yakka and there is ALWAYS the hanger-on who does not pull his/her weight but skims off an equal share of the profit … this, inevitably, causes serious conflict. Going into business is a SERIOUS business and one needs to be very discerning in the type of person they select as a business partner – being a relative or friend should NOT be part of the criteria! A successful business partner is one who has the skills, work ethic and sense of moral fairness NOT to take advantage of you but, rather, to work with you to achieve success at a common goal. That person need not be a person you would choose as a friend, may be someone you don’t even like very much (personally) but has the skills and aptitude to turn your business into a success. Age old advice about keeping your business life separate from your family/social life is very good advice indeed.

  2. LauraSL says:

    Similar to working with family, it can be hard to separate the business from the personal. I don’t recomment it.

  3. Amy F says:

    I see a lot of potential for problems when friendship, money and livelihood mix and the need for very clear boundaries.

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