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What makes partnership in business so powerful?
Partnership, when it is productive, is the best thing that can happen to you in business. The logic is simple: in a medium-sized business, the bottleneck is not the market, team, or capital, but the founder himself (or herself). However strong his qualities, like an anchor holding a yacht to the bottom, it is his weaknesses and vulnerabilities that hold the business back. Strengthening the system at this point is a priority, as everything else is less important.
In a fight, you can't hold your opponent's hand with one of her own hands. The opponent will simply twist his wrist towards his thumb. But if you grab your opponent's hand with both of your hands, forming a closed circle, you can hold even a strong person for a long time. How? Your right hand compensates for the weakness of your left hand, and vice versa. As a result, the strength of your grip grows not linearly, but exponentially.
Like the right and left hand, people must be different enough to have significant benefits, but at the same time similar enough to have common goals, concepts, and meanings. It's clear why not all business co-owners become partners — this is too formal a criterion. Conversely, sometimes the best partners are not necessarily co-founders, such as the CEO and COO.
I have had both destructive and constructive partnerships. In the case of the former, I regret not leaving them immediately when yellow and especially red flags appeared. In the case of the latter, I mourn not realizing at the time what a rare and generous gift fate had given me. If you have a business partner, you should admit to him or her: "It's so cool that we've been together for so long. Thank you!"