Partnerships: Finding the Right Fit

The ability to identify and collaborate with the right partners can make or break a company’s success. Working with partners in commercial real estate is very common as compared to single family homes. The transaction sizes are so much larger that it often becomes a team sport.

Finding compatible business partners goes beyond simply finding individuals with similar interests or industry expertise. It is not a one-size-fits-all approach. The ability to collaborate harmoniously, work towards shared goals, and leverage complementary skill sets plays a pivotal role in achieving exceptional outcomes. 

I think that there are three fundamental principles that pave the path to finding compatible business partners. Taking these things into consideration before partnering up can maximize our potential, create stronger alliances, and aid in avoiding common setbacks. 

The first principle emphasizes the concept of synergy – the belief that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. When seeking business partners, it is essential to find individuals who share this fundamental belief. By joining forces, the collective efforts can propel growth and success far beyond what each individual could achieve alone. For instance, in a real estate investment opportunity, collaboration allows for the expansion of the proverbial pie, benefiting all involved parties. Recognizing the potential for mutual growth is a crucial prerequisite for a successful partnership. I’ve been in partnerships where partners started thinking they could do better alone. Maybe they could or maybe they couldn’t. But you want to see that tendency in a potential partner before getting involved. 

Next, consider your values. Do they align with the values of your new potential partners? Alignment of values ensures a cohesive and harmonious working relationship. In negotiations, for example, it is essential to have a shared approach. Some may prioritize closing deals and compromising on certain aspects, while others may prioritize securing the best possible outcome. Neither approach is inherently right or wrong, but misalignment on this front can lead to conflicts and hinder progress. Open and honest communication is vital for effective collaboration. Partners must agree on the importance of transparent feedback and communication, as opposed to keeping information close to the chest. Shared values create a foundation of trust and facilitate smoother decision-making processes.

The last piece of the partnership puzzle hinges on finding partners with a diverse range of skills and expertise. For example, a team consisting solely of capital raisers may lack the operational and management skills required for a multifamily project. Conversely, a team solely composed of operational experts may struggle with raising capital. By identifying partners who can fill the gaps in our skill sets and experiences, we create a well-rounded syndicated team capable of tackling various challenges effectively. It is tempting to partner with individuals who share similar personalities, but true success lies in embracing diversity and leveraging the unique strengths of each team member. For example, I am not a classic salesman. I do better behind the scenes, working on strategy, analyzing the financial statements, and structuring deals. So I need an outside salesman type of personality to partner with if I’m looking to find deals.

Compatibility in values and vision, complementary skill sets and resources, and effective communication and collaboration are fundamental to finding compatible business partners. By adhering to these principles, businesses can build strong and enduring partnerships. The ability to identify and cultivate these partnerships is a hallmark of successful business leaders and can be the difference between mediocrity and exceptional success. Working with the right people can create a powerful collaborative force. This force not only enhances individual and collective potential but also paves the way for innovative solutions and outstanding achievements. The journey to success is often shared, and finding the right partners can make all the difference.

To Finding The Right Fit,

Paul David Thompson