Shelly Banjo of the WSJ offers a nice piece on choosing partners for your new business. It is something many of us go through (I am just finalizing terms with a partner in my new venture). This article doesn’t answer all the questions and there are a million permutations, but it has some solids. Think Gates-Ballmer, Brin-Page, Cuban-Wagner, Hewlett-Packard, Yang-Filo, etc.
Sign an Agreement
Once the decision is made to start a business together, it’s vital to create a partnership agreement with help from a lawyer and an accountant. “Any partnership that operates without a written agreement is simply playing Russian roulette,” says Leslie D. Corwin, chairman of the litigation business disputes group at international law firm Greenberg Traurig, based in Miami.
Shane’s research (which was highlighted here) shows that firms founded by partners have higher rates of survivorship (meaning success), so having a partner appears to bring benefits. Moreover, there are a lot of difficult times during the launch of a new firm and having someone else battling by your side is a good thing.