detail of painting, copyright 2006 by Benice Horowitz, Stamford, Connecticut. All rights reserved.

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It Takes Two to Tango

In “The Perils & Possibilities of Entrepreneurial Partnerships,” Sharon Horowitz summarizes CENTERNORTH’s research about and experience with entrepreneurial partnerships. She encourages your feedback and is interested in your ideas for additional research.

Many companies often start out as partnerships. Forming one often makes sense: two colleagues with expertise and a good relationship decide to combine resources to start new business. But partnership relationships can be difficult. Few survive: less than 20% last more than five years. At CENTERNORTH, we consulted to many partnerships and coached survivors of failed ones. We noticed common themes in both the horror stories and the success stories, which spurred us to conduct some preliminary research to bring into focus the challenges and solutions arising from the partnership business structure.

The paper offered here presents our early research results and outlines pitfalls and strategies: what traps to avoid and what works. The entire report is available as a PDF (68 KB)—download it here:
It Takes Two to Tango:
The Perils & Possibilities of Entrepreneurial Partnerships

After you’ve read the report, we’d love to get your feedback. If you are currently in a partnership, what are your struggles and what do you do to make it work for you? What other issues related to partnership relationships would you like us to research and write about? Your comments can be anonymous—it’s your choice—and replies will be kept confidential.

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