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Do you need to be alone in business?


A black and white picture of a man alone

“All businesses need business partners to grow. Tycoons know the importance of filling the gaps and weaknesses in their own skill set or business idea, by finding the parts of the jigsaw puzzle to create the best chance of success.” Peter Jones (10 Golden Rules of an Entrepreneur)

When I told my friend I was setting up in business, imagine my dismay when he told me he was going to do the same…  in my industry!

Oh no! I thought. Competition! And I’ve not even started trading yet! My wife laughed when I told her. The solution was clear – why not team up instead?

As usual, my wife was right. My new business partner’s skills and mine went so well together. He was technical and studious, I was the salesman – without each other we would have undoubtedly failed. As Peter Jones says in his 10 Golden Rules of an Entrepreneur, we had “filled the gap and weaknesses in our skill set.”

You may have an idea of where you want to go or what you want to do but can you do it on your own? It’s not an admission of guilt to say ‘no’. There may be areas of your personality which you know could cause a problem further down the line. Perhaps you love creating but hate negotiating.

So look around your friends and see what skills they have. Are they people who can help you achieve your goals. Can they be a positive influence? Sometimes you have to look wider than your friends – I met my business partner just six months before we joined forces.

You don’t need to have a business partner but there are others out there who you can learn from – people who have been in business for a lot longer than you have. Not only can they teach you things but they may be able to open some doors for you; use their influence to benefit you. They may also have the strengths you lack.

So take a good look at yourself. Do you need to look to other people to ensure your success?

Learn how to be an entrepreneur on the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy course at Derby College starting September 2012

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