In the first part, we discussed Roy Neuberger’s 10 Principles for Successful Investing – and I transposed his principles to apply to, in an admittedly liberal fashion, the art of Joint Ventures.
Many people give reasons why their joint ventures – or success in general – ultimately end up failing.
Some say you need to be more spiritual, and that the Law of Attraction determines everything. To be sure, I believe spirituality is important to one’s well-being and relationships (at least mine).
But when you read that a man who celebrated his 100th birthday in 2003, ran a multi-billion dollar investment bank, and never had a losing year actually identifies himself as an atheist (who abandoned his religion at a young age and couldn’t understand why people are spiritual)…
…you can’t help but think that perhaps successful investing and dealmaking cannot be chalked up solely to a lack of spirituality (as many in today’s marketing community might have you believe).
But I digress and don’t mean to offend anyone’s beliefs. I simply want to point out that there ARE principles to successful business practice, and if one hopes to be successful in business, one must study them in detail.
Let us move on to the next 5 Principles of Successful JV’s:
6) Analyze the companies closely
Neuberger advises to “Check the company’s real assets.” As important as that is while investing, it is critical for successful JV’s as well.
If you’re dealing with a company or individual who claims their product will make you money — yet has little personal or financial assets in the first place — it is wise to analyze whether the deal will truly add to your income.
More importantly, if the other company has more liabilities than assets, something will most likely go awry. Make sure to not become a “yes” man when it comes to creating partnerships, but someone who critically analyzes all proposals and deals.
7) Don’t Fall in Love
This is a biggy and can be interpreted in multiple ways. Let’s look at a quote directly from Neuberger himself:
“People should fall in love with ideas, with people, or with idealism based on the possibilities that exist in this adventuresome world. The last thing to fall in love with is a particular security.”
You can exchange “security” with “deal,” “product,” or “company.” Placing all of your emotional energy on one deal, product, or JV partner can prove damaging to your long-term financial and mental health.
Make sure you stay passionate about life, but objective about your deals.
8) Diversify, but Don’t Hedge Alone
Another timeless piece of advice. As you create more joint ventures with other companies and individuals, you will find that some naturally incur more risk than others.
For example, at Goldbar, we have a portfolio of low, medium, and high-risk deals. More often than not, the high-risk deals provide the greatest return.
But to make sure we keep our bottom-line steady — and our cash assets stable — we also invest time and energy into low and medium-risk JV’s and product lines.
9) Watch the Environment
This one is critical to the success of not just your JV’s, but your organizational health as well.
If you’re not aware of your environment — the trends, news, and facts of your industry — then forget about executing successful joint ventures.
More importantly, if you have no knowledge of your partner’s industry — assuming it’s different than yours — you’ll have little leverage when it comes to the negotiating table.
10) Don’t Follow the Rules
Now, we can interpret this in two ways. Put crudely, the first one is bad, the second one good.
If you completely ignore the rules of reciprocity, profitability, and marketing, you’ll end up looking like a fool. There are certain timeless principles that transcend the latest management theories.
This is why Neuberger amends this rule by saying, “At least not slavishly.” Indeed, if you didn’t follow any rules or principles, then Neuberger needn’t have written this article at all.
So let us amend this final principle by saying to keep the rules in mind, but make sure to add your own insight and intuition to the deal. Like all good things, too much rule-breaking can turn sour.
So make sure to follow your own path while keeping the material you learn from the Marketer’s
Resource Weekly and other reliable business sources in mind. If you’ve found a “secret” technique that gets you results — even if it goes against what others say — then, by all means, stick with it.
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