My Business Experience – My First & Last Most Successful Business Investment Partnerships with Examples
Successful Business Partnerships
My business partner of over ten years now laughs his lungs out when I say, “selecting a business partner is like choosing your spouse.” One wrong move, and you file for a business divorce. We can sit and laugh today, but ten years back, none of us thought we would make it this far. The fear and mistrust are settled just like in marriage when you spend so many years together, and you’re left with only living and improving your lives—no backing out, just pushing through the thick and thins of life.
We had just graduated from engineering school at the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi. Life was very green and offering various opportunities. Unlike today there were big tech companies providing jobs for new graduates. The automotive industries absorbed the majority of the graduates while others seek employment abroad. Now there was me who had all the chances but overlooked all. I remember I had an offer from the highways authorities, but I fixed another friend. Nothing was wrong, but I felt I could be different, maybe run my own company.
My parents were supportive of the idea but very frustrated when all chances went by. My father would talk me into getting experience and then going out and building my dream. However, what other experience did I need? I had the internship years I know pretty much to start something. I researched businesses on civil engineering (highway engineering), which was entirely unfruitful. This went on for few months, and I was sure there was nothing.
So I applied for a job in a road construction company. It came fast, and I started earning though not fully satisfied with the employment issue. Back then, I had no many expenses, so I saved 75% of my salary and worked for four years in the same company. During this period, I was promoted to several ranks, from managers to senior engineer positions. I would handle different area which offers different perspectives. I knew what to venture into once I start my own business.
In the four-year work experience, I knew I wanted to start my business. However, the field required more than I can offer. I needed partners with the same vision and vigour to start the business. I planned to lease construction equipment. The leasing business is lucrative as the potential clients are the government and big private companies. In my line of duty, the government would hire construction equipment from other countries. The government offered tenders for building bridges, roads, dams and buildings. However, no internal contractor would offer the equipment, thus picking foreign companies.
The idea didn’t sell out fast as I thought. My friends felt I was overthinking and overconfident. However, I continued pursuing the idea until I met one of my schoolmates. He had just landed from London, and we met in the city. Over the cup of coffee, he told me his back and wants to start something since he wanted to give back to his country. I sold my idea, and he bought it, first it was plain talk and what we can achieve. We planned another meeting where we were to discuss finances and how to get into the business.
It was very rocky, too rocky, and our finances couldn’t do much. I opted to involve a financial advisor and institution which bought our idea in exchange for helping us purchase the equipment. The creditor offered a flexible payment term with simple interest. The payment period worked for us, enabling us to work without the pressure of time. I had to use my influence in the field, and I got the first tender to construct bridges in three states. My friend has a solid connection with equipment companies abroad. We first leased and ensured we got the job perfectly done. We created profits and attained more contracts. Our creditor bank was supportive; they helped us fully own the equipment (excavator, grader, skid loader, backhoe, trencher, scraper, bulldozer, concrete mixer, and more). We love and respect our job and have different roles to play. No one feels boss over the other. My friend has his share of knowledge and skills, while I have mine. He can get financial partners from abroad, and I can access contracts from the company in the country. It has been about respect, commitment and sacrifice. We have paid off initial loans and can pay salaries to more than 150 employees.
The Business Partnership Journey Involved:
Getting the best financial partner
We had a series of financial creditors to choose from. I checked on the repayment period, interest rates and how much they were willing to offer. Getting a potential creditor requires time and good searching. Don’t just settle for any bank or creditor. The financial aspect had a significant impact on your business success.
Understanding My Partner’s Commitment
Starting is always rough since you need income and living your personal lives. Like you can quit your jobs first to start a business which you’re not sure will work. I was still employed in our case, but my partner had already quit his job and was ready to start his own business. It made it easy to use since he dedicated 100 per cent of his time. After I got the first deal, I also quit, and we were in together full time. He understood I couldn’t just leave work and respected the fact he was there all through.
No Assumption of supremacy or leadership
Leadership kills businesses since you all want to be the boss. We talked and agreed nobody rules the other. We worked by tabling our skills and knowledge; each handled what they can.
This was quite challenging since we all had our savings, but none was enough. We decided when the business gets out of the crawling stage; we are 50/50 shareholders. So we kept our greed aside and decided it’s about success.
One vision and mission
From the word go, we had the same vision and mission of expanding the business. Today we are prominent and famous; we are conducting most government projects and moving to other countries.
Compatibility works just like in marriage; you accommodate all your partner’s flaws and make them right. I was an early person I could make go to construction site early and supervise. I could also manage employee’s complaints. However, I wasn’t a late-night person or travel person. My friend could sit very late, compile different files and ensure all is done with a particular project. He travelled so many times making financial deals. We were two partners who brought various items to the table for business success.