In recent years, opportunities to find potential startup partners has increased, which is great news for startups. When building your start-up, there are many factors to consider, including collaboration. It’s crucial for every business to collaborate. In fact, startup collaboration can make or break a start-up.
Taking on external partners also brings on new and exciting ways of working, as well as efficiency and cost-effective methods.
The only problem is – where to begin? While partnerships are an important part of business, it’s difficult to know how to get started. Here are some essential tips to help you get started.
1. Examine Multiple Collaborative Opportunities
Whilst this tip sounds obvious, it is essential, particularly for start-ups. Startup collaboration with partners often equals business success.
Startup partnerships can bring in specialist advice to an area where your business may be lacking.
Therefore, prioritise which partnerships will have the most beneficial impact in terms of value and performance.
Ensure you have fully considered all your options. Mistakes at this stage can lead to unsuccessful partnerships, which in turn have negative consequences on overall business.
You don’t have to work with the first interested party. Explore who is out there and assess your options. ~ Paul Martin, Managing Director, Parallel Blue
2. Devise a Clear Partnership Strategy
It is important to be sure on what you want from this partnership before embarking on it. What are you hoping to achieve?
A collaboration should involve individuals working towards a shared goal. Therefore, be clear on your objectives. How will this partnership benefit your start-up?
Reasons to collaborate include:
• Cost-saving methods
• The development of new technologies
• Appealing to a wider market
• Network growth
• New inspiration
A successful partnership will be beneficial on both sides. Therefore, your strategy will determine success or failure.
Identify barriers to success in advance, to avoid problems once the relationship is established. ~ Jenni Day, Head of Production, Woodcut Media
3. Fully Evaluate Partners
Whilst this is the hardest part of any collaboration, it is also exciting, because it opens up multiple opportunities.
- Consider each potential partner individually, asking yourself questions such as:
- Does their business vision align with yours?
- What can they bring to your business?
- What do they specialise in?
- Can they bring something new?
The answers to these questions should answer: which partnership will be most beneficial?
Be picky here. The partners you choose will play a large role in determining whether your start-up is successful or not.
A good collaboration will open you up to exiting opportunities and new ways of working. ~ Tim Casson, Director, Casson and Friends
4. Monitor Partnership Success
It is essential to determine what you mean by success and monitor this.
Partnerships should have long-term success not short-term gains. Therefore, constantly measuring performance and return throughout your collaboration will ensure you are achieving your goals.
Collaborations are not guaranteed to be successful. However, the right partnership will help your start-up to thrive.
Sustained collaboration must create commercial value for both partners and their customers. ~ Sonny Masero, Chairman, Demand Logic