April 29, 2022
Reading Time: 3 miNs
Finding the right partner for your business can be difficult. No matter what kind of service you are looking for - from third-party marketers to financing providers - there are three questions you should always ask before deciding to partner with someone. Keep this article handy as you evaluate your options.
What are your objectives and constraints?
The first step in finding a partner is to define your objectives. If you don’t know what you want out of a partnership, vendors will not be able to help you. Before you do anything else, consider what good or service you want, the price you want it for, and when you want it delivered.
Figure out how your partner would add value. If you need help with a critical part of your operations, you may want to prioritize quality over price. However, if the thing you’re outsourcing is less important, cost should be the deciding factor. Also, think about any time constraints you may have, such as how long you can wait between placing an order and receiving the goods and/or how long the onboarding process might be.
Practice writing out your objectives and constraints using the SMART framework:
Specific: Clearly state what you want to achieve with a partnership
Measurable: How will you measure your partner’s performance?
Achievable: Know what you are willing to pay for your partner’s services
Relevant: Know why you are willing to pay for your partner’s services
Time-bound: Have a deadline for completion
Is the relationship mutually beneficial?
As with any other relationship, a business relationship is more likely to succeed when both parties share similar values and incentives. Creating win-win situations will make your partner more willing to invest in your growth and vice versa. As a result, your business will receive better prices and quality of service today.
Nevertheless, keep in mind that when you partner with someone, you hitch your wagon to theirs. If your partner gets a bad review, it will reflect negatively on your business. As you write out your objectives and constraints, take note of what your partner gets in return. If it appears too good to be true, take a moment to see if you missed something
What track record does your partner have?
Different businesses have different specialties. Find out if your partner has experience dealing with companies similar to yours (in scale, product type, cost structure, etc). Don’t be afraid to ask for references, and be sure to read reviews.
Another factor to consider when looking at your partner’s history is their level of transparency and responsiveness. All businesses make mistakes, but some are better at recognizing what they did wrong and working quickly to correct the issue. Either way, make sure you know your partners’ terms and conditions, especially on return or insurance policy. If you are not sure what businesses your potential partner has served in the past, or you have any other doubts about the fit, tell Hansa, and we can help out for free!
Remember, it's never a bad idea to pause and think about what you're doing. The next time you're looking for a partner, ask yourself these questions.
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