Starting A Side Hustle With Your Bestie? Read This!
I have been reflecting lately on the delicate nature of business partnerships.
My business partner and I met 7 years ago. We became fast friends; spending our days together at work, our evenings together over Prosecco and we dreamt up a plan to create our own company, we brought the business to life, we held down full time jobs, became mothers and navigated all the tricky beautiful challenges life threw our way.
Moving from besties to business partners has been a really natural movement for us and let me tell you, we work at it, every single day.
We created our operating principles on how we will work together. These principles have allowed us to move fast, align quickly, challenge each other, work together flawlessly and most importantly - launch our business.
It is easy to have a great business idea, but to execute - that takes strategy, thought and an intentional plan on how you will achieve maximum workability between the Co Founders.
If you are in a similar scenario, take the time to pause, reflect and design an alliance on how you will work together including a plan for what you will do when things get tough, what you are committed to above all else and the lens and values you will filter decisions through.
It may just be the most important planning your business does.
Our Top 6 Operating Essentials and how they support us in our Partnership:
1. CLEAR IN THE MOMENT
So what does it mean to ‘Clear’? It simply means bringing the unsaid into awareness.
Consider the following; You are in a meeting with your Partner and you are not moving forward, butting heads, not agreeing - is there something to clear? Ask yourself:
Is there something holding you back from being fully present? Are you holding on to something form the past that is getting in the way of your listening? Is there a belief you have that is getting in the way of your ability to be in possibility?
Clearing gives you access to the present moment.
When you are in the present moment you have the maximum ability to impact.
We Clear - in the moment, with vulnerability, with our truth and without judgement.
2. KNOW WHAT SUCCESS LOOKS LIKE
Success looks different for everyone - create a clear vision of what it looks and feels like for your business and for you as individuals.
It is important to understand how your partner defines success.
At Talent Lab we set a 10 Year Vision. We have 4 pillars of how we speak about our vision, they are:
- Global Business
- Freedom + Choice
We have specific goals and objectives in each of these buckets that are clearly defined.
Our 10 year vision is created from the place of pure possibility.
We then break down the 10 Year vision into our 5 Year Strategic Priorities - all of our decision making today is filtered through this lens.
Does doing ‘xyz’ support our 5 year Strategic Priorities? If yes then we do it, if not, it’s an easy no.
We stay laser focused on what moves us closer to the Vision and we hold each other accountable to making that happen.
3. EXEMPLEMARY COMMUNICATION
Our Communication with each other is Next Level.
We are constantly in a cycle of: Connect - Align - Connect - Align - Pivot - Align Again.
We restore integrity - if one of us will be late to a meeting, miss a deadline or not deliver what we said we would - we are 100% responsible for communicating that to the other partner.
We ask for what we need - we don’t sit in unclarity, fear or let ourselves become swamped or overwhelmed. We pick up the phone and say ‘hey, I need support with this’.
We check in - ‘hey you seem stressed, what is going on for you? How is your workload? Are you managing?’ We don’t wait for the other person to drown. We stand for each other.
4. CLEAR FINANCIAL GOALS
We talk money every week, we go through our accounts, budget and forecasting line by line. We understand what is coming in and what is coming out. We set goals around income how we want to use our financials to advance our community and our team.
We approach financials through the mindset of abundance.
We believe money + value go hand in hand.
We have a sound financial structure in place that allows us to contribute to our future growth, the present moment, retirement and our passion projects.
5. PRESENCE + PROSECCO
This is our precious time to connect.
We sit down, light candles, pour a glass of Prosecco and don’t talk business.
No matter what is going on we commit to being right here right now.
This is when we connect on life, love, loss and everything in between, we talk about our sons, how we are doing individually, what’s keeping us up at night, what we are excited about. Sometimes there’s tears, a lot of the time there’s laughter, prosciutto and a ton of brie cheese.
This is our sacred time to be present for each other and simply be friends.
6. TIME IS PRECIOUS
We use the phrase ‘Time is Precious’ a lot at Talent Lab and we mean it. We mean it above all else.
When something is going on we ask each other the question: ‘Where or who do you need to be with right now? Go Do that.’
We understand that performance is actually improved when our lives include time for renewal, wisdom, wonder and giving.
Most importantly, success for both of us means that our whole lives work in harmony. Fulfillment in our lives outside of our business is just as important and crucial to us as the business growing in profit and global reach. One without the other doesn’t work.
And of course we are still learning, growing and figuring things out. The above framework has supported us in the first few scrappy, messy early start up years. We hope it inspires you to create some principles that will support your businesses with strong, healthy partnerships that last a lifetime.
Written by: Tess Sloane, Co Founder, Talent Lab