Coaching business partners in successful communication

Business partners work successfully together when they are coached to acknowledge individual differences but work toward common agreements. By doing so, they acquire the mindset, tools, and skills of a long-lasting and successful partnership.

In this article, you’ll be introduced to four relationship styles entered into by business partners.

In the four articles indicated throughout and at the end of this overview, each style will be discussed in greater detail.

Unlike relationship therapy or counseling, coaching for relationship style empowers you with skills and tools so you start and stay aligned as business partners. This way you can focus on building your business together!

Unconscious Assumptions and Expectations of Varying Relationship Styles

Each business partnering style comes with conscious or unconscious assumptions and expectations. These in turn contribute in different ways to the communication and decision-making between the business partners or owners. These interpersonal aspects include:

  • Feelings of ease, trust, respect, and the ability to count on one another.
  • A sense of individual contribution, recognition, and loyalty.
  • Ease and openness of communication.
  • Invitation, support, and encouragement of unique perspectives as part of creative culture.
  • A commitment to working on the “same team,” An attitude that “We can resolve anything together,” in navigating decisions and differences that impact personal satisfaction, as well as business success.

Unique Differences Between Relationship Styles

Each style is briefly analyzed along the following dimensions:

  • The conscious or unconscious relationship mindset or perspective. This dimension is about ultimate decision-making power within the partnerships. It may supersede a title or even who appears to be in charge. Who ultimately gets their way, or final say? Are you operating as partners, a team, or as a solo decision-maker?
  • An approach to decision-making across all aspects of the business. Where and how are you given autonomy to make decisions individually as a business partner? Is it clear when decisions must be considered together jointly as partners? How do you wish these decisions to filter throughout your team?
  • A perspective on differences, conflict, and how they get resolved between partners. Are you in agreement about how you will handle differences or conflict? Do you have ways to stay engaged when differences arise? If your individual response to conflict is different, do you enlist help so you come to a resolution together, or do you revert to grand-standing or pushing things under the rug?
  • Expectations regarding production, agreements, and accountability between owners or partners. Once decisions are made, do you have a clear system communicating the next steps and project flow? Is there an agreement so you can count on follow through, along with specified times to deliver, reevaluate or refine?
  • Regard for the individual as well as mutual contributions and needs to the partnership, to the company itself, and even to business growth. Is value placed in acknowledging each person’s contributions? Is their respect for the individual territory, based on expertise and capabilities? Are you conscious of both business developmental stages, and also personal developmental stages? How these needs are integrated, or not, for you and your employee’s needs impacts the business.

4 Unique Business Partner Relationship Styles

This diagram briefly illustrates the relationship dynamic between business partners. Typically in my coaching with business partners, they initially evaluate a combination of styles present in their interactions. Most often they articulate a desire for a true “partnership” that is robust and fully functioning. Without education and coaching in the mindset, tools, and skills of a full-blown partnership, the styles are usually mixed and hit-or-miss in implementation.

Learn More to Evaluate What Style You Want

Learn more about each style here in the following articles. I’ve focused on each relationship style in depth so you can see the strengths and weaknesses and ways they might be impacting your business. From this, it is easy to identify the style of relating you wish and to receive coaching to help achieve your goals.

Have partnership difficulties now or in negotiation with a potential partner? Don’t wait! Let’s get you on a better path  Contact me here.

Read about all 4 relationship styles here:

For a case example of business partners successfully implementing the Big Picture approach, please read this article.

Please look around the website for more resources, contact us here, or email Dr. Jan directly  to schedule a conversation. Let’s discuss your partnering needs and I’ll share more about the mindset, tools, and skills of Big Picture Partnering can benefit you and you business, so you can have the great partnership that expresses your values and dreams, enriches your pocketbook, and your entire life!

Pitfalls to Running a Successful Business Together as Business Partners

To download both  White Papers for business partners, please go here.

Additional information for Couples, Dual Career Couples, and Couples in Business can be found here.

When you are ready, let’s talk! To discuss your partnership needs, contact me directly here.

Dr. Jan Hoistad