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Addressing Chaos & Conflict in Business Partnerships

Posted on Apr 18 2011 under Partnerships, Previous Programs

You might be thinking “my best friend and I want to go into business together offering the best cupcakes in town.” But what does it really mean to enter into a business relationship together? Or maybe, you have been in business with your partner for some time now and the relationship is having it’s problems. Even good partnerships have periods of conflict and issues. We will explore where relationships can go wrong, discuss how to prevent these partnership problems, and how to approach fixing them once they appear.


Join me as I discuss with Zena Zumetathese very issues. Zena is a lawyer and a former president of the Academy of Family Mediators. She is internationally known as both a mediator and trainer of mediators, Zena is president of the Mediation Training & Consultation Institute, Zena Zumeta Mediation Services, and The Collaborative Workplace in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

For more information go to Zena Zumeta Mediation Services

Listener Assignment: To encourage you to take the next step in your business partnership relationship, we encourage you to sit down, talk and discuss the uncomfortable and hard topics. Depending on where you are with your business partnership…new relationship, established and enduring conflictual tense relationship, or maybe it’s time to separate, consider these questions.

1) How will you resolve conflict when it does arise? Think ahead, anticipate, prepare for these hard conversations.

2) How and who will make critical decisions when you reach an impasse?

3) What are the resources available to you to help you have the difficult conversation? (trusted advisor, mediator, facilitator, mutually respected colleague, etc.)

4) What will you do if someone wants to leave the business partnership?

5) What if one wants a business partner to leave due to intractable conflict, but they don’t want to?

6) What options should you consider putting into a partnership agreement to help you resolve serious disputes without raising the issue to the level of a legal dispute or using an adversarial process? (e.g. consider putting in a mediation or arbitration clause into your partnership agreement)

Feel free to leave comments or questions below. Thank you for listening.



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