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Pairing Up

Are two heads always better than one? Know the good and the bad sides of business partnerships.

This story appears in the September 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

You've wanted to start a business with your best friend for years--or perhaps you know a business associate with complementary skills whom you feel would be a great partner. While it's tempting to go full speed ahead, parse out the pros and cons before deciding on a partnership. Though there's no single answer for everyone, two experts weigh in to help you decide what's best for your business.

Pro:Terri Zwierzynski, a business coach and founder of Inc. in Cary, North Carolina, likes partnerships because two people can get a lot more done than one person, and each partner can work in their respective strong areas. Partners might also have different financial resources to call upon for the business--which doubles your network. Particularly if you're close to the person already (a friend or family member), you know that person's work strengths and habits. This person can also see the areas you might be blind to.

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