In this article
- Why Strategic Partnerships Matter for Your Business
- Key Elements of Successful Strategic Partnerships
- Boosting Your Bottom Line with Strategic Partnerships Using GPARENCY
New business. New location. No money.
That was my life in a nutshell in May of 2001. I had just left the CREF company I was a partner at to start my own brokerage from scratch. I moved shortly after from Brooklyn, NY to Lakewood, NJ to save money (even living with my in-laws for a few months), but finances were still tight. Getting my new brokerage off the ground was expensive, and I found myself living off of credit cards and borrowing from one person to the next, barely squeezing by.
I was taking a huge leap forward, but in a lot of ways, it felt like I was back at square one. I went from being a partner at a top brokerage to being a solopreneur working in a basement. I was no longer a part of a team that could bounce ideas off of each other, and there was no one to fall back on. I had to go back to the basics—and that meant a lot of cold calling.
Although I was excited to be venturing off on my own for the first time, the truth is that I had to work three times as hard to make less than I was making at my previous job and assuming all of the risks. Starting a business isn’t glamorous!
My circumstances looked unfavorable, but I didn’t care. I was happier than ever. I knew I was doing what I was passionate about, and with God’s help, He would see to the rest. I was also excited because I knew I was going to bring something different to the industry.
With no money for office space, my father was generous enough to set aside some space for me in the basement of his business, Artscroll. I had always looked up to my father and his way of doing business, but now, I had the privilege of seeing him in action every day.
One of the biggest lessons I took away from my father was the power of partnership. My father always had a business partner, and it was incredible to see how their strengths and weaknesses perfectly complemented each other. They were so much stronger together, and I wanted that same kind of alliance.
It just so happens that a friend that I met while at Yeshivas Lev Avrohom in Israel, Abe Bergman, worked with me for a few months at my previous company. He left around that same time and came on as my partner to build our new commercial mortgage brokerage together!
This brings up a question every entrepreneur faces: to bring on a business partner or not to bring on a business partner?
For me personally, my partnership with Abe was and is one of the greatest business decisions I’ve ever made. Our strengths and weaknesses complement each other.
Why Strategic Partnerships Matter for Your Business
I was recently introduced to a management operating system called EOS (I strongly recommend looking it up), and they teach the two critical roles every business needs to thrive: a visionary and an integrator. Visionaries focus on the big picture, client relationships, growth, and culture. Integrators thrive when it comes to details, execution, and day-to-day management. They are two very different roles, and although you can step into your opposite role for a season, you’ll burn out if you stay there for too long.
Knowing what I do now about EOS, there was a reason why we worked so well together from the very start: I was the visionary and he was the integrator. I enjoyed coming up with the vision, direction, and sales ideas, and he excelled at vetting ideas and getting the good ones from point A to point B.
Key Elements of Successful Strategic Partnerships
Before Abe and I partnered together—to ensure we always had peace in our working relationship—we knew we had to set forth some guidelines. We decided to draw up an official method for working out conflicts:
- We had an agreement in place that we could buy each other out if it ever came to that point. We knew that this approach would keep us both honest, on the same page, and protect our relationship.
- If there was ever a disagreement that we couldn’t find a reasonable compromise on, we decided on a person we would go to—his word would be final. I’m happy to say we’ve never had a disagreement escalate to that point!
- Understanding the course of action if we couldn’t come to an agreement, we agreed that we would sit down and listen to each other’s side of the argument to see if we had a right to our claims first. Was each of our perspectives valid? If so, we would split the difference and do our best to compromise.
Back to business. Throughout the years, both Abe and I have had many people ask, “Why do you need to have a partner?”
Leveraging Resources and Expertise: Sharing Risks and Rewards
My answer is simple: the only reason I had the capacity to accomplish what I have is because of what Abe was doing. While he was taking care of the operations, I was free to focus on the bigger vision for our business. I would rather own a smaller percentage of something bigger versus a larger percentage of something smaller. Plus, as the old adage says, “If you enjoy what you do, you don’t work a day in your life.” I truly am blessed to feel like I don’t work a day in my life—if I had to do what Abe does, that probably wouldn’t be the case.
Our new brokerage started in a basement with a shoestring budget, and although our beginnings were humble, we couldn’t have asked for a better crash course in business or partnership to see it through. As we continued to expand, we knew we would need to continue adapting. But the foundation we created together would eventually pave the way for a major disruption in the industry.
Expanding Your Reach and Building Your Brand
Building a business from scratch can be a challenging but rewarding process. Here are some steps you can take to get started:
- Find partners you can rely on: Whether they come in the form of employees or business partners, strategic partnerships can take you further than you ever thought possible in your career.
- Attend industry events: Attend industry events and conferences to grow your connections and knowledge. Make sure to introduce yourself to others, exchange business cards, and follow up with new contacts.
- Offer value to others: Seek opportunities to offer value to others by sharing your expertise, providing introductions, or offering to help in any way you can. This will help you establish a reputation as a valuable and trustworthy person in your network.
- Consistently follow up: After meeting someone new, follow up with a message or email to maintain the connection. Keep in touch with your network and clients by sending updates, reaching out, asking for advice, or simply staying in touch.
Building partnerships takes time and effort, but it can be an effective way to establish yourself in your industry, make valuable connections, and advance your career.
Boosting Your Bottom Line with Strategic Partnerships Using GPARENCY
Get the most out of your partnership with GPARENCY!
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- Effortless Partner Connections: Notify our team of your deal, and we’ll introduce it to our network of accredited LPs, expediting deal closures and finding ideal partners.
- Flexible Brokerage Pricing: Close deals on your terms with our exclusive pricing of $11K upfront or ¼ point at closing, or take advantage of our hybrid services to have our banking team shop your deal to our list of lenders and negotiate your term sheet for just $4,000.
- Data-Rich Marketplace: GPARENCY provides access to a data-rich marketplace with 35M+ data references for real-time insights while seamlessly integrating an acquisition pipeline that allows you to mark properties as favorites, track every property you’ve explored, and affix notes to recall important details.
- Expert Guidance: Count on our seasoned commercial real estate veterans for knowledgeable support at every step, from financing to deal structuring.
Join GPARENCY today to seize control of your next commercial real estate deal. Unlock our extensive network, exclusive pricing, data-driven marketplace, and expert guidance to achieve your investment goals.
- What are the potential benefits of entering into a strategic partnership in commercial real estate?
- Strategic partnerships offer commercial real estate professionals several key advantages in their deal-making efforts. By collaborating with industry peers, professionals can gain access to a wider range of potential deals, expand their expertise through shared knowledge, resources, and networks, and mitigate risks by pooling resources and sharing financial burdens. Additionally, strategic partnerships enable professionals to enter new markets and enhance their negotiating power, leading to increased opportunities for successful transactions.
- How do strategic partnerships in commercial real estate differ from traditional joint ventures?
- While strategic partnerships and joint ventures share some similarities, they have distinct differences. Strategic partnerships in commercial real estate often involve a looser and more flexible structure, where partners collaborate on specific deals or projects while maintaining their individual identities and ownership structures. Joint ventures, on the other hand, typically involve the creation of a separate legal entity with shared ownership and decision-making authority. Strategic partnerships offer more agility and allow partners to retain their independence while collaborating on select initiatives.
- What factors should be considered when selecting a strategic partner for a commercial real estate venture?
Choosing the right strategic partner for a commercial real estate venture is crucial for success. Some factors to consider include:
- Complementary Expertise: Look for partners who bring complementary skills, knowledge, and experience to the table. This ensures a well-rounded partnership where each party can contribute unique strengths.
- Shared Values and Goals: Ensure that the potential partner shares similar values, work ethic, and long-term goals. Alignment in core principles and objectives is vital for a sustainable and productive partnership.
- Reputation and Track Record: Evaluate the reputation and track record of potential partners in the industry. Seek partners with a proven history of success, integrity, and ethical business practices.
- Compatibility and Communication: Assess the compatibility between your organization and the potential partner in terms of culture, communication style, and decision-making processes. Effective and open communication is crucial for a smooth partnership.
- Financial Strength and Stability: Consider the financial stability and resources of the potential partner. Adequate financial capabilities ensure that both parties can meet their commitments and withstand any unforeseen challenges.
By carefully evaluating these factors, you can select a strategic partner that complements your capabilities and aligns with your objectives, maximizing the potential for a successful commercial real estate venture.