3 Subtle but Serious Signs a Business Partnership is in Big Trouble

Ostensibly, a partnership is an ideal way to bring two necessary but different skill-sets together. After all, it makes sense to join various strengths in order to form an alliance. Such an arrangement seems like it will yield fruitful results.

However, far more partnerships fail than succeed. There are many obvious reasons why this happens. But, it’s not always so clear-cut. So, let’s take a look at some subtle telltale signs that a partnership is in trouble.

The Biggest Partnership Dangers

Dave Ramsey has made famous his five dangerous D’s of partnerships: death, disability, disinterest, drugs, and divorce. Of those, only one makes the list below. That’s because it’s not always crystal clear that something is awry.

You generally spend more waking hours at work than at home, which means you have more opportunities to interact with your business partner and the nature of your interactions tend to be more intense, with more potential for conflict because there are so many external variables that are beyond your control. —Forbes.com

There are scenarios when very subtle factors are in play. Unfortunately, most business people miss these signals put out by their partners. Eventually, they become more pronounced and at that point, it is usually too late to save the enterprise.

3 Signs a Business Partnership is in Jeopardy

When a business partner goes through a very difficult time in his or her life, it’s usually quite easy to see the writing on the wall. But, there are instances when there are no overt problems or issues. Here are three subtle yet serious signs a business partnership is in trouble:

  • Apathetic. Let’s begin with the only sign that makes the list above — disinterest. This can manifest in two different but similar forms: distraction and apathy. A lack of concern and focus can wreak loads of havoc on a business. Before you know it, the onus falls on you alone. That’s when you’ll realize your partner is no longer interested in participating. And, by this time, it usually causes an irreversible rift.
  • Autonomy. On the opposite side of the spectrum is autonomy. Sure, being able to operate independently is typically a good thing. Except when there’s far too much of it. So much, you find out about key decisions well after the fact. This is a sign that unpleasant news is most likely on its way to you.
  • Elusive. This is a very tough one and perhaps, the most frustrating of the two because it’s so difficult to understand. When your partner becomes elusive, that is to say, overzealous one moment and indifferent the next, you’ll struggle to cope with why. This will only lead to unnecessary disruptions and make the partnership unsustainable.

What other signs would you add to the list? Please share your thoughts and experiences by commenting!

Interested in learning more about business? Then just visit Waters Business Consulting Group.

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