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What Can I Do If My Business Partner is an Obstructionist?

What Can I Do If My Business Partner is an Obstructionist?

Update: 2019-07-24


While it is perfectly natural to have disagreements with your business partner from time to time, dealing with someone who consistently questions and interferes with your work can be frustrating and will ultimately have a negative impact on your business. So, what can you do to navigate such a difficult working relationship? In episode #159, Gene Marks and Elizabeth Larkin advise small business owners on how to handle an obstructionist.

Executive Summary

1:19 Today's Topic: What Should I Do If My Small Business Partner is an Obstructionist?

1:38 —Prior to going into business with someone, you need to make sure that you and your partners have compatible goals and working styles.

2:16 —Open communication is the key to handling a colleague who is very risk-averse.

2:44 —If you are already working with an obstructionist, it is important to pick your battles and compromise when you experience differences in opinions.

4:25 —Recruiting external input from your fellow colleagues or established authority figures can give credence to your opinions and help persuade your partner to see things from your perspective.

5:30 —Gene reassures small business owners that they don't have to overly concern themselves with Twitter because only 20% of the population owns an account and only 10% of Twitter users are active contributors.


Submit Your Question


Elizabeth: Welcome back to another episode of The Small Biz Ahead Podcast. This is Elizabeth Larkin from The Hartford, and I'm here with Gene Marks from The Marks Group.

Gene: That's me. Yes.

Elizabeth: Also a small business owner, and a speaker, and our small business expert.

Gene: Yeah, yeah and a learner of all things small business, man, am I learning. Surveys, I've got to take more surveys, it's a whole other question.

Elizabeth: Okay, today we're going to focus on kind of a personal issue in the office, and I can't wait to get Gene's take on this because it's about when your business partner is an obstructionist. And we're going to be right back with Gene's take on that after we hear from our sponsor.

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This podcast is brought to you by The Hartford. When the unexpected strikes, The Hartford strikes back for over 1 million small business customers with property, liability and worker's compensation insurance, check out The Hartford's small business insurance at

QUESTION: What do you do if your small business partner is an obstructionist?

Elizabeth: Okay, today's question came in anonymously and she asks "What do you do if your business partner is an obstructionist? I struggle with a business partner who is both risk averse and hates change" So what do you do?

Gene: Well, first of all, the obvious is a lot of question about how you even chose to go into business with a business partner that doesn't share the same values and goals. First of all, that's one -

Elizabeth: Well, that's not what she said.

Gene: It's not but I do want to say that here's a woman that's havi...

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What Can I Do If My Business Partner is an Obstructionist?

What Can I Do If My Business Partner is an Obstructionist?

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