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How to Find a Business Partner for Your Studio

How to Find a Business Partner for Your Studio

It doesn’t matter if you are new to owning a fitness business. You are going to need help running it. I’m not saying you must have a business partner to have a successful business or business; however, it may benefit you more than you think. Either way, finding the right business partner should be taken very seriously.

Whether a new gym business owner or a "seasoned" one, it's good that you are considering a partnership. No matter what the case is, you’ll know how to find a business partner and the different kinds of partnerships there are.

Types of Business Partnerships

Believe it or not, there are an array of different partnerships. You determine how involved your business partner will be. This includes:

  • General Partnership (Active partners)
  • Limited Partnership (Sleeping Partners)
  • Limited Liability Partnership (Partners in Profit)

General Partnership

A general partnership is something you should see as 50/50. This type of partner will be just as active as you, which means you both share the success yet make significant decisions together. This also means that both of you share liability as owners for a lawsuit, debt, and more.

Limited Partnership

A limited partnership is when you determine how involved your business partner is. For example, you are doing most of the work, and you make the end decision; however, you still have a partner you can refer to as needed. These types of partnerships may have liability to your business; however, they aren’t as actively involved as you.

Limited Liability Partnership

A limited Liability Partnership is when you partner with a similar business or investor for profit only. This person most likely knows how to bring money to your business and you both share the profit. However, the profit losses that this partnership may bring, well, this will be solely on you. This partnership does not share the failures.

Should your Friend be your Business Partner?

Now that you better understand what types of partnerships exist, you must ask yourself which one works best for you. Are you looking for someone who is doing as much work as you? Or are you looking for someone who is not there as often as you? Once you figure this out, you can start your search.

You may have a friend you are considering joining a partnership with. Before you go into business with your friend, separate business and personal. Know each other’s roles, and ensure you are constantly communicating and working towards that same goal. Realistically, partnerships may go wrong because of lack of communication, finger pointing begins, resentment is felt, and don’t get me started on entitlement. AVOID THIS AT ALL COSTS!

What you Should Already Have…

Before you consider how to find a business partner, you need to “consider” yourself and what you have to offer. So the best types of teams and partnerships are the ones where they excel where you don’t. Yes, it is okay to have similarities in a partnership; however, why hire someone who is you? That would defeat the purpose of ANY partnership. So, let’s look at you as a partner first.

Strengths and Weakness

No matter how long you have been running your business, you should know what you are good at as an owner and what you are not so good at. By knowing your strengths and weaknesses, you can look for a partner who excels where you don’t. By doing so, your business will go further than you can ever expect it to.

Business Goals/Vision

You must be clear on your business goals and your vision. As your business expands, you must be clear about where it will go. By knowing the theme or niche of your gym, you will be able to find someone who better fits your needs. Don’t hire anyone who doesn’t agree with your goals, vision or niche…even if they have all the money in the world. Things will get rocky if you don’t partner with someone who understands this.

Plan B/Trial Period

Some may be unsure if you want to go through with a partnership. Still on edge or unsure how to find the right business partnerships for you, then create a plan “b” or put a trial period in place. Partner with someone who understands that you want to “test the waters first.” If it works, it works, and if it doesn’t…well, let it be.

Your Role

Everyone in your gym has a role. And every one of their roles is essential. You have a role and your role is the heart of the entire operation. When going into a partnership, you must know your roles so you can find the things you don’t do in your partner.

Patience

You must be patient. You may consider a few people to go into partnership with and none of them work. Be patient. Know that everything will work itself out; however, you must consider yourself and what you have to offer before searching for a partner.

What Your Gym Partner(s) Should Bring

You know what you have to offer. But, what should your partner offer you? How do you find the right business partner?

Trust is Needed

Why work with someone you don’t trust? Trust is something you build over time, true. However, if things aren’t adding up right or this person/company has a bad reputation, don’t trust them (or at least don’t trust them immediately).

Compliment your Skills/Synergy

You and your business partner don't have to be glued to the hip or anything; however, you should compliment one another. What are they good at? In what areas can they grow? Can they work under any circumstances? At the end of the day, you should balance each other out.

Communication

Communication is key. No matter the type of partnership you choose, you must communicate with each other—partner with someone who reaches out to you when something is wrong or they have questions. Be open with each other skills and ideas and when you disagree, find common ground.

Finances vs. Pizazz

There is no such thing as “the perfect partnership.” Some of your partners will bring the finances, but they won’t know how to run a business (they aren’t business savvy). While some of you may have partners who work hard, show up, and are business savvy, investments aren’t their “thing.” By knowing yourself, you can partner with someone who fits your business needs.

Gym Partnership Agreement

When you do find the right business partner and you agree on the kind of partnership you have, then it’s time to form and sign an agreement. This agreement will outline your roles, partnership, and more. Once both parties sign, you are legally bound for however long you agree. So, whether you partner with a friend or not, make a contract, get lawyers to overlook everything, and keep a signed copy.

Your business can expand in a way you never know when you find the right fitness partner for you. Two minds are most definitely better than one, you’ll see. So what kind of partnership are you going for? What question are you going to ask your business partnership?

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