You have really high hopes for the joint venture relationships you enter into. You hope they’ll help you establish new contacts, grow your list, and earn more money. Ideally, the people you work with will be a good match. But, what happens if they’re not?
This does happen sometimes– for a variety of reasons. Maybe you’ve even experienced it yourself. Maybe the JV relationship needed to end because it was a bad fit. Or maybe it needed to end because the other person wasn’t willing to put in equal work. Or maybe it needed to end for an entirely different reason.
Maybe you haven’t yet experienced this and you’re actually scared to enter into a JV relationship at all because of the thought that it might not be all rosy. You know that you’re holding yourself back– but you’re sort of okay with that because of all that can go wrong.
Or, perhaps you’re on the other end of the spectrum. Maybe you’re ready to jump into JV’ing with both feet. You’ll work with absolutely anyone you think could even remotely help you in business, whether you really know all that much about them or not.
First, there has to be a happy medium. Don’t totally shy away from joint venturing. You’ll be leaving a lot of money and a lot of opportunities on the table if you do that.
But also don’t just jump into every single opportunity without thoroughly vetting the other person or business and the situation. You have to protect yourself. It will also benefit you to only focus on the opportunities that are going to be most lucrative.
With that said, I’m going to assume that you’re already in a joint venture relationship at this point and you’re wondering if you should end it. If you know you’re ready to end it, you’d like to know the best possible way of doing that. Let’s talk about that.
Ending an Unprofitable JV Relationship
You enter into JV relationships because you think they’re going to be mutually beneficial. You think they’re going to help you earn more money and you’re going to help them earn more money.
What if that doesn’t happen?
It could happen this way for any number of reasons. They might not be pulling their weight. Or maybe there are personality clashes and the stars just aren’t aligning and the money isn’t coming in.
It can be uncomfortable, but there’s a point when you just have to sit down and have a meeting. Discuss whether the partnership is worth salvaging. Can you make some adjustments to turn the ship around to profitability? Or, is all hope lost?
You might be surprised. The other person might be having the same thoughts you’ve been having. Maybe they, too, have been wondering how to stop the bleeding and end the relationship. The ideal case is that you’ll be able to end the relationship with no hard feelings at all.
It’s hard to keep emotions out of it. This is, business, though, and you have to make decisions based on profitability. If the partnership isn’t profitable then it makes sense to end the relationship. If you’ve tried what you’re willing to try and things aren’t meshing and there are other opportunities you could be focused on instead, it’s time to say goodbye.
Uncomfortable, yes. Necessary, yes. The hope is that you’ve chosen someone who is mature enough to handle this sort of thing in the first place.
It’s also important to have safeguards and agreements in place before you officially sign on to work with someone. You should know going in what will happen if you choose to dissolve the working relationship. This is very important and will help prevent a lot of problems for all sorts of reasons you might end the partnership.
Ending a Bad JV Relationship
There are some similarities between ending an unprofitable JV relationship and ending a bad JV relationship. For example, you need those safeguards in place before you even start working with someone so you’re totally protected. This is especially important for when a working relationship goes sour.
If neither of you is feeling compatible, then it might be natural to dissolve the working relationship. Each of you will be glad to be rid of the other. This is a best case scenario.
If there are hard feelings or disagreements over who owns portions of a project or profit or things like that, you may have to get legal counsel involved. This can be extremely difficult to deal with. Protect yourself from the beginning- I can’t stress this enough. Only work with people you really trust– I can’t stress this enough.
This can be a very difficult situation. But, if working with someone difficult is causing undo stress and isn’t earning you money on top of that, it’s time to end things. You will feel better, even if it’s difficult to get through it.
You’ll Be Better Off in the End
You’ll be better off ending a bad or unprofitable relationship than hanging on just to hang on. Trust me on that. You don’t want negative energy or negative people in your life.
That’s also one of the main reason you have to be so protective of yourself when it comes to JV partnerships. Only work with people who are deserving of your work ethic and vision. Work with people you know you can trust.
Protect yourself with agreements. Set things up the right way so that you are protected even if you have to end things for whatever reason. It can be a pain to get everything on the table from the start, but it’s the smart way to do things because it can get really, really messy if you don’t.
Getting through a bad partnership will make you stronger once you’re through it. You’ll learn something about what to look for and do next time. Dust yourself off and get right back on that horse. You’ll be wiser next time and on the path to improved profitability and partnerships that will be mutually beneficial.