Going into business with another person enables you to each draw off of the other person’s strengths. While many partnerships start off well, there are times when things take a turn for the worse. In these cases, it’s imperative that you take steps to resolve the issue in a way that protects the company.
One of the most important things you can do is to set the conflict resolution methods in the partnership agreement. Even if you don’t think you’ll have to use them at the start of the partnership, it’s better to have them ready if the need arises.
Consider each person’s strengths
It’s possible that a disagreement will stem from something that’s more in one partner’s specialty area than the other partner’s. When this happens, the person who’s more familiar with the disputed content should sit down with the other partner and outline why they made the decision they did. This might help to smooth things over and provide both individuals with some guidance about how a similar situation can be handled in the future.
Keep the dispute out of the company
Try to discuss the partnership dispute in private. It might raise an alarm with employees if they hear the owners of the company disagreeing with each other. There might be times when you have to bring employees in to discuss the matter, but this must be done discreetly and with a confidentiality clause.
Know when to escalate things
There are some situations that require immediate and severe action. If you find out that your partner is stealing money or that they are slipping another company your trade secrets or sharing the company’s intellectual property, you might not be able to go through mediation or another amicable dispute resolution method.
When you have to take things to a legal level in a partnership dispute, it’s best to ensure that you have representation that can protect your interests without losing sight of the company’s interests. This ensures that you have a resolution that keeps the company moving forward despite the challenges that it’s facing due to the dispute.