You may not have realized it yet but having a good collaboration in business can be a marvelous thing. As small business entrepreneurs, we tend to hesitate and think a lot since we’ve started on our own and wouldn’t want any one to impinge . But this is self defeating. Just look at the large businesses that are thriving and getting even bigger through smart business strategies and collaborations. So lets take a look at the reasons why small businesses are hesitant to take the step towards smart partnership and suggest some solutions
Small businesses are afraid
Small business owners have usually created a comfort zone for themselves. They feel they are doing best by keeping away from further responsibilities and are unknowingly trapping themselves in this zone. They fear expansion. They fear exposure. Fear is the culprit that stops them from venturing out with new business strategies. They feel its scary to approach a business that is well established, or more experienced or larger.
The solution: The solution here, is to dare to do. Feel the fear and do it anyway. You have nothing to lose. They may say ‘no’. They may not return your calls. But is may also be that they have been looking for partner just like you. Or they might have never thought of collaboration but now that you have approached them, they think it is a good idea. Take the chance, it may be your golden one.
There may be Communication Gaps
In any strategic business partnership or collaboration, communication is a major factor. When two businesses come together and agree for a short term project, or a long term partnership, some small businesses tend to feel that they being swallowed up. This is not true. When two businesses collaborate, they do not become one. They remain separate entities and have complete control over their own businesses.
The solution:Remember that you are collaborating for a specific reason or a project. It may be a short term tie up or long term commitment. The key here, regardless of the type of collaboration or business strategy, is to voice your opinions, your concerns and when you agree to work together there should be no issues, no problems. Clear communication and synergy is essential. And remember, there’s always the option of walking away once the project is done, if you feel uncomfortable in the partnership.
Fearful of sharing the Profits
Finally, it all boils down to money. When the time comes to sharing the profits of the deal, it will do good to remember a saying “something is better than nothing”. When you collaborate, you are bound to share the profits. So quit worrying. Perhaps, without the partnership you may not have landed the project at all. Don’t lose opportunities by being fearful of sharing profits. You have both worked together and both deserve their fair share.
When you collaborate, you not only share costs, but also share exposure new opportunities, new audiences and hence have everything to gain since you share profits too. Most big companies and even government agencies prefer to collaborate and call these projects joint ventures. If you have a likely partner in business in mind and wish to tie up for greater growth, go for it. You may be more successful than on your own.