Two to the power of one
The right business partner can shine a light on your strengths and weaknesses, helping you to thrive when you’re on your own.
In a few weeks’ time, a friend and I will be launching our new business.
We’ve been developing our products and plans for a couple of years now, and as you’d expect, things have definitely intensified in the lead-up to our kick off next month.
Like any close relationship, working with my friend has taught me a lot about myself. My business partner has shared observations about the way I work that have proven enormously beneficial – not just to our new venture, but also to my existing (soloist) business.
Of the many eye-opening insights that flying duo has given me so far, perhaps the most important is that in my case, details really do have quite devilish characteristics.
I’ve long known that I can apply myself to extremely detailed tasks for extended periods of time. The outputs of said tasks are often quite commendable, but until it was pointed out to me, I hadn’t realised that they came at cost.
"It took someone else to point out that focusing on highly detailed and precise work quickly clogs up my creativity, intuition and energy."
I’m now aware that while I can do these tasks, that doesn’t necessarily mean that I should. It took someone else to point out that focusing on highly detailed and precise work quickly clogs up my creativity, intuition and energy.
Want more articles like this? Check out the work styles section.
Those attributes are much more important to my work than the ability to knuckle down and cross the i’s and dot the t’s. Without them, I’m not as capable of devising strategy, thinking laterally or plucking fabulous ideas out of the ether and bringing them to life.
In future, I’ll be finding ways to outsource as many of those finicky jobs to others as I can – for both businesses.
Similarly, it has become clear that if I can’t get my head around how a process will work in the future my mind will keep worrying at it to the detriment of more urgent, big-picture steps.
Armed with this awareness, I’ve been able to progress quite a few projects in my solo business that I’ve been stuck on for ages, simply by allowing a little time early on to focus on some details that in theory could well wait until much later. It feels quite liberating!
I’m convinced that neither of these insights would have occurred to me while I was sitting at my desk working alone. It took my business partner’s exposure to my habits and mental goings on over an extended period of time for them to come to light.
Have you also picked up tips about the ways you work best through the observations of someone else? I’d be very keen to hear about your experiences and insights, so please comment below.