TMBA 442: 'Til Death Do Us Part? Business Relationships

TMBA442: ‘Til Death Do Us Part? Business Relationships post image

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Dan and Ian love receiving messages and questions from listeners of this show.

A few weeks back, one listener reached out to ask about what the ownership structure of a business partnership should look like.

This is a critically important issue for many entrepreneurs, and it’s an incredibly complicated one to boot. Dan and Ian are business partners themselves, but they have seen many other partnerships evolve and dissolve over the years.

On today’s show, we are talking about five partnership styles that we’ve personally witnessed over the years, how they can affect your business, and how you can find the right business partner.


Listen to this week’s show and learn:

  • The pros and cons of the “Marriage Model” of partnership. (6:57)
  • What a “Workhorse” relationship looks like. (12:37)
  • How entrepreneurs can develop a “Parent/Child Relationship”. (17:31)
  • The risks of partnering with “Fairweather Friends”. (22:58)
  • Some strategies for finding your ideal business partner. (27:06)

Mentioned in the episode:

This week’s sponsor:

This week’s episode is brought to you by Weebly. Don’t let the lack of a big budget or technology skills get in the way of having not only a beautiful website, but a powerful one. If you’ve got a product idea and you want to share it with the world, check out As a special offer to listeners of this show, you can visit to get 15% off your first purchase.

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Published on 05.24.18
  • Big fan of Branson’s “screw it, let’s do it” – think the show finished on a high with some ideas about protecting one’s interests. Certainly some deliberation toward an exit strategy should you end up with a partner who turns out to be a dud.

    If you’re needing a partner to find your success now, you may lose momentum or waste an awful lot of time looking for “the one”. What other business opportunities might you miss by hesitating?

    Think about any time you’ve ever gone to a meeting of “entrepreneurs” or “founders” or any other start-up themed function. How many people did you meet who aren’t in business but have been planning to make the leap for 6 months… 12 months… 2-3 years or more???

    To paraphrase the TMBA – these people aren’t even at the stage of being broke. They’re in time-debt. They’re stuck!

    Try and succeed, your business works. Try and fail, you know not to spend more time on that idea, learn, and move on. Either way you’re better off doing something rather than nothing.

    I like the idea of “dating” for your marriage partner in this metaphor. Just think you should marry young and keep a good pre-nuptial.

  • Ryan Latone

    Thank you for featuring my question on the show! Tropical MBA continues to deliver killer insight into the journey of entrepreneurship.

    My product has been a year and a half in the making, with the last 7 months spent exclusively on finalizing the design, protecting IP, and most importantly, hitting the ground to validate the product with potential customers. With the product validated, I know what customers are willing to pay and their expectations for the product. It is now ready for mass distribution.

    I’m excited to bring a unique self-administered massage tool to the market, specifically designed for athletes & work professionals who live on the go. This product is geared towards athletes who take their recovery seriously, so ideally I want to partner with someone who is passionate about health and helping others strive for a better quality of life. Currently, I’m seeking a partner who has built a successful online store— drop shipping expertise a must.

    If interested, drop me an email at

    Ian & Dan, thank you again. All the best!

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