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Partnering With Intelligence

Victoria L. Rayner December 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

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The resurgence of partnering arrangements is an inevitable consequence caused by the continuous struggle of spa entrepreneurs to remain as independent as possible. Spa owners face special problems due to soaring business expenses. Radical changes in treatment measures are yet another factor involved—especially when combined with an influx of new products and must-have technological service devices. Franchises also are making the operation of spa businesses by single owners nearly impossible.

Practically everywhere you look, jointly owned and operated spa enterprises are appearing. Two owners can split the expenses, lighten individual responsibilities, generate twice as much profit and even gain a competitive edge with half the effort. However, it takes a lot more than going from a “me” to a “we” in business in order to make a long-term partnership thrive. Preparedness is crucial when taking advantage of the opportunities that this affiliation affords.

More than a legal nightmare

At one time or another, every professional has been privy to the cynical stories that have circulated throughout the industry describing the many potential and common pitfalls attributed to badly conceived partnerships. It’s no wonder that so many people in the beauty field have such a poor opinion regarding them after having been exposed to so many grim views of the demise of such relationships.

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The Nearly Perfect Partner Profile

The Nearly Perfect Partner Profile

  • Must enjoy the challenge of building a business structure with another person, and have enough patience and tenacity to work relentlessly toward the realization of success.
  • Must work well with others and enjoy taking on team projects.
  • Must possess good organizational and planning skills.
  • Must be flexible and adapt to change easily.
  • Must handle criticism well and not expect to be singled out for recognition after completing tasks.
  • Must be able to handle the extra pressures that are inherent in a business and partnering situation.
  • Must have enough financial security to assume the fiscal risk that threatens every start-up or growing business venture.
  • Must be comfortable sharing knowledge and, when necessary, training others on their best skills.
  • It also is helpful if the individual has a history of starting a business entity from scratch and turning it into a profitable endeavor.

Additional Challenges

Additional Challenges

No matter how good a partnership is, each person involved should expect to encounter any one of the situations listed below.

  • A clash of interests
  • Differences in priorities
  • Frustration about who is producing more
  • A need to dominate
  • Unfair scrutiny
  • Inconsistencies in responsiveness
  • Competitive periods
  • Unreasonable justification for actions
  • Improper allocation of the business funds

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