How to keep your business running after losing a partner

Many SMEs start off as partnership as it's a great way to share the workload and burden attached to operating a small business.

Whether with a best friend or family member, a partnership is a great way to enjoy your success with someone close to you. However, sometimes the unthinkable can happen and due to unfortunate circumstance you may be forced to pick up the ball and keep the business running by yourself.

Coping in the circumstance of such a loss can be one of the most difficult challenges a partner can ever face. Here are six tips from to help stay on top of business.

Gather all key information

It's common for one member of the partnership to organise and coordinate all the administration tasks of the business. But it's equally important that they make a list of the SMEs insurance policies, as well as the necessary account numbers and passwords in case of an emergency.

Understand your financial position

It's critical that both partners always have a strong understanding of the financial position of the business, that way should a separation occur each partner will be well informed about issues such as cash flow, expenses and payroll.

Use your employees

Juggling your loss with your business management can be extremely stressful. Use your staff to help during the transition phase. It's likely your employees will have been impacted also, so they will be well positioned to understand your situation.

Be open and visible

Many customers and clients that dealt primarily with your partner may be doubtful of the business moving forward. If your partner was heavily involved in client interaction it's a good idea to make contact as soon as your feel comfortable doing so and reassuring them of your objectives.

Create a new succession plan

In the event of a loss you could be left to operate your business as a sole trader. Consider your current employees and try to determine if there are any key people to takeover should something happen to you. Then put a succession plan in place to accommodate for any unforeseen circumstances that could affect the business management.

Take a break

It can be challenging and stressful sorting out all the paperwork and fine details during the transition period. Try finding the time to take a momentary step away from the business to recover from the grieving process. Put a trustworthy employee in charge and return when you feel fit to do so.

Running a business can be stressful enough, but trying to run a business by yourself while coping with loss can take its toll on your health.

Are you currently running a business with your partner? Here are some tips on how to make business with your partner work!


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