A guide on how to build and maintain business partnerships that aren’t just functional, but inspiring and enduring.
1. Fantastic Partners And Where To Find Them There are so many amazing businesses out there with goals that might align with yours— but where should you look? Aside from the obvious (Google, which might be so obvious that it’s actually not obvious), social media is a great place to find business partners! While social networks like Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn are great places to start, special interest professional networks like Girlboss (focused on women redefining success) and Gust (focused on startups) are perfect for narrowing down the endless sea of possible partners. You can also communicate with professionals within your field on Slack— just Google “[Insert topic] + Slack Community” (ah, yes, the power of Google). 2. Don’t Be Afraid To Send Cold Emails! So you’ve found your future (business) partner, but they don’t know it yet. Business partner-crushing on them from afar is a valid option, but if you want to turn that possibility into a tangible relationship, you’re going to have to make the first move. Which is to say, you should probably send them an email (or ask them out on the ferris wheel, that usually works, too). But seriously, people are nicer than you think! Send a prospective partner an outreach email outlining the remarkable things about your business and how it relates to theirs. Especially if your brands and business goals align, the person you’re emailing would likely welcome the possibility of working with you. Think about it: they’re business owners, just like you! Everybody’s looking for love— I mean, a mutually beneficial business partnership between two people who want to further the development of their respective companies. Same difference.
3. Get Down To Business, About Your Business
Kala and Prairie of Song & Tonic— our guided music and cocktail pairing experience.
In any successful team, communication is key. Set up a time to meet with your prospective partner; try to seek shared values and develop a shared vision for your businesses. How might your businesses assist one another? Where might they clash? Honesty is key here— once you determine your individual strengths and weaknesses, you can come together and play to both of your strengths. Come up with a game plan: what are the tangible next steps you both need to take to accomplish your shared goals? 4. Bond Over Drinks— Or, Better Yet, A Full-Sensory Tasting Sure, you can be boring and get coffee or drinks with your new business partner to strengthen your relationship (yawn). You’ll also have a chance to wind down and enjoy one another’s company outside of the workplace— you both deserve it after all your hard work together! Plus, the experience will help you form memories together and establish trust, which will make your ability to work as a team all the better (to learn more about the effects of a full-sensory experience on team-building, take a look at this blog post we wrote!). Networking may be scary— or, at the very least, confusing— but it’s so rewarding once you find a business partner that you click with.
After all, there’s nothing like sharing business success and a bottle of wine with your newfound partner-in-crime.
Sophia is the PR & Content Manager at Five Senses Tastings, a company focused on curating (now virtual) full-sensory tasting experiences that meticulously pair music, wine, food, and sweet treats in perfect harmony. She is a junior at Barnard College studying English (with a concentration in Creative Writing) and minoring in Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies. Sophia hopes to pursue a career in Content Marketing when she graduates. She's passionate about food and beverage, and loves to cook whenever she's not too slammed with homework (though she does sometimes use it as a form of procrastination).