Criteria for Choosing a Joint Venture Partner

We all know that you cannot predict when people will show their true colors. So when you’re choosing a joint venture partner, how do you know whether or not this person is a good fit?

How do you know your JV partner is stable?

Appropriate? Honest? Genuinely motivated?

You can’t know for sure. Only time will tell. Interestingly, while time is the best judge of character, it never rules out the potential for things to go south.

This week we lost a JV partner because she spontaneously began acting bizarre. She is married to a man but made a pass at my wife after getting so drunk and disorderly that we’d have ended the relationship regardless.

We don’t care that much what our partners do in their own private worlds. But in the public arena during business? Nope. Drunken, disorderly and sexually inappropriate is a deal-breaker.

What are some good criteria for choosing a JV partner?

The usual list of honest and motivated and blah blah blah. They are super important in spite of the blah blah blah comment. But they’ve been done a thousand times. Here’s a good article on the classic characteristics of a good JV partner (as well as other good JV info).

But there’s more.

During the past two weeks – as a result of our epic JV partner relationship failure, I would say this.

Do NOT overlook ANY red flags.

Like any relationship, overlooking the red flags will kill you in the end. When the time comes; when conditions are just right, it will blow all blow up in your face.