As you and your business partners launch a new company in Texas, you likely understand that you need a solid founders’ agreement. This contract forms the nuts and bolts of your business structure, operational control and ownership percentages. To shield you and your partners from disruptive problems or disputes, you could expand upon the technical aspects of running the business and add guidance to the founders’ agreement about a host of issues that could derail your startup.
Identify your differences
Each person founding the startup brings a set of skills to the mission. On top of individual skills and talents, each person should try to account for how personalities and temperaments may impact how they navigate challenges. Developing a realistic understanding of everyone’s vision empowers you to cope with abstract issues not fully addressed by business law.
Take the time to discuss with your partners your individual:
- Management styles
- Success benchmarks
- Long-term business goals
As you work your way through these concepts, prepare a plan for how to resolve disputes. These will inevitably flare up from time to time when differences of opinion occur.
Work through hypothetical problems
You and your partners will find it easier to have productive conversations when the issues are hypothetical. Calm conversations about what each person thinks or feels about various situations become possible when none of you are gripped by the emotions of a real-life dispute.
Spend some time talking about what you would do if:
- Your company gets bad publicity
- You receive an acquisition offer.
- A co-founder becomes incapacitated.
- A co-founder wants to change the direction of the company.
Use what you discover during these hypothetical conversations to complete your founders’ agreement. In this way, you could give your startup a greater chance of success.