You are growing pretty darn fast as it is and you seem to have a great upside even from here.
My recommendation is not to partner. Take your time and things will fall in place, they already are. Build the foundation just as you want it to be, and that may/will change as you move along. Having a partner who has different ideas will really put sand in the gears if you want to change directions.
You are doing just fine. This is your practice, build it to suit yourself and you will be much happier 1,2,5,10 years from now.
You will be the leader in your universe and you will have no problems finding just the right mix of support/referral people. They will be coming to you hoping to join your team.
Proud of your success so far, keep it up!
As a small business owner myself, I would advise staying by yourself and not taking on partners. I've seen it done, in the dental field, but I've seen many more with problems. It wouldn't be anything to rush right in; make sure all the legal stuff is sorted out with contracts including how to dissolve and part ways prior to going forward if you do so. I'd advise working on all that marketing, branding and growth and then include associates or employees.
I realize its somewhat apples to oranges but there are some similarities between the two fields we are in; mainly relating to operating a small health/wellness related business. If you wish, I am including my email and I'd be happy to share some things we have learned along the way.
Good luck to you.
The flip side of that is that when busines partnerships break up, they are often like some of the worst divorces.
Partnerships are not inherently bad, but they do require a lot of preparation, planning, and proper documentation to do them right. Setting everything up right on the front end takes a lot of time and money.
From what you've described in this thread, it does sound like a mutual referral relationship may be best for you at this time. None of this is legal advice, and you should definately consult an experienced partnership/LLC lawyer before entering into any business partnership.
Good luck and congratulations on the success of your business so far.
received was not to have partners. This came from the seller, my accountant, and my attorney. 14 years later, they were right hands down. This is a marathon, not a sprint. So it takes a few years more to grow - but it is all yours.
Lot's of disastrous things come with partners - even good ones. Someone could get divorced and the ex-spouse gets half of her business share, and then marries a psycho communist who wants to milk her share. Or, even more likely, after 5 years, you guys just have different objectives and the business becomes strained.
Unless you need it to survive, go on your own.
They approached you for a reason. Seems like they see your success and want a part of it. You are much better off hiring high quality individuals whom you trust to run the business while you are not there.
If they are doing something you aren't, then hire someone that can.
That way you answer only to yourself. And your life will be much simpler and happier.
Being good at their craft does not mean that they are good business people or partners. Your business is embryonic and a bad partnership can kill it, and your reputation, quickly.
My first thought is, before committing to something binding like a partnership, just formalize the referral relationship for awhile and see how it works out. Carefully observe how they manage their business. See what their customers confide about them to you.
Then, if you decide to go forward with a formal partnership, a certain amount of due diligence must be done, to include examining each other's books, business performance, credit, etc and a partnership and operating agreement must be created. This process should not be rushed into.
The stakes are high for your business, be patient in pursuing shortcuts to growth. You are on a good trajectory and are on plan. Be cautious in going off path because it could be irreversible. I hate to be pessimistic, but the wrong partner could easily make your dream a nightmare.
Thanks to both of you for your replies.
I feel like I'm on a great trajectory and have a unique skill set that makes me more valuable than any partner at this point. I just need to be patient.
learn how to network better. Get referrals from many different sources as opposed to just one, two, or three people. What value proposition do you provide? Learn how to sell that to people that can provide you with referrals. Grow slowly and don't expand until 3-6 months after you think you're ready to expand (shit almost always falls through in some way, shape or form and it is harder for you to take cover in those situations when you're just getting started). Build a fiercely loyal client base that you have the primary relationship with prior to bringing on new people to outsource business to; make sure to have non-competes signed by people that you're bringing on board (in CO you can't completely prohibit someone but you can attach monetary compensation if someone leaves and tries to take clients).
If you are going to take on partners have proper paperwork drawn up outlining expectations, roles, what happens if x/y/z happens, etc. There's a whole bunch of other stuff that I am sure others will chime in with but I lack time right now.
in addition - whoever owns the facility/controls the lease - will have a lot of control over the business.
i know you have a pretty specific vision for your business and the services you provide - anytime you add someone to that mix will complicate that (although they hopefully bring some positives to the table as well).
i'm stoked that things are going so well - and i'm still trying to hook you up with this guy - i'm going to hit my brother up again on it.