There is strength and comfort in being part of a team, especially if you are a solopreneur, home-based business owner or virtual worker. I’ve noticed lately that everywhere I go, I am being reminded that teaming up with others for a common pursuit is a really good thing. Just 2 weeks ago I gained a “sound bite buddy” in a media training class so the two of us could practice material we’re developing for radio interviews. I also acquired a speaking accountability buddy to check in with each week to make sure we are accountable for assignments for professional development course we are both taking. Soon I plan a project teaming with other authors and businesses as a means to support the launch of my new book and an Amazon.com marketing campaign. In all three cases, having these connections should help me succeed AND will also promote the success of my buddies too.
I have to admit, I prefer referring to these alliance partners as buddies. I like them, enjoy working with them and want to help them succeed. We operate as equal partners and we maintain the freedom to step out if the partnership does not serve us. The energy we exchange is not dollars, but rather support, ideas, encouragement and contribution. We are stronger because we chose to work together.
Today my mastermind group met to discuss strategic partnerships. I was impressed to come away with even more ideas for the value they bring. Where in your life or business would a work buddy make sense? Below are 5 considerations to help you identify opportunities for informal partnership:
1. Testing and Feedback: This kind of buddy offers a safe, confidential place to test ideas, products, material and concepts and to generate constructive feedback. This partnership requires expertise, a non-competitive spirit and honesty.
2. Accountability: This buddy knows your priorities, goals and deadlines and checks in regularly to keep you on track. Regular meetings with this kind of buddy help you make commitments, get things checked off your list and also gives you someone to celebrate with.
3. Connections: This sort of buddy has lists of emails, friends, customers, suppliers and organizations. They can make introductions and see possible new links for you and your business, often before you even recognize them. This buddy helps you expand the reach of what you do so that you can expand outward with greater ease.
4. Synergy: When 1+1>2, that’s synergy. Both parties offer value and when teamed together offer the marketplace greater convenience, value, savings or innovation. This kind of partnership is a win-win for all involved when done well.
5. Shared Expertise: Teaming up with an expert can save huge amounts of time and aggravation. An example might be a successful business attorney partnering with an internet marketing expert. The marketing expert needs legal advice and the lawyer needs internet marketing ideas. Both benefit and move forward, even if money never changes hands.
There’s always room for a buddy in your business. Keep your eyes open for opportunities and invite partnerships that build success for both of you as a way to build your local economy.