Did you know that about a quarter of businesses survive for 15 years or longer? If you don’t want to be part of the 75% that fail, you should consider opening a restaurant with the best partner for you.

A good business partner can help lead your business to success. They’ll also be able to cover gaps in knowledge and experience you have.

Read on to learn a few ways to choose the ideal business partner.

1. Focus on Compatibility

One of the best ways to get the right business partner is to choose someone you’re compatible with. That will make it easier for you to work together during and after the restaurant opening.

You can also reduce unnecessary conflict if you and your partner have the same ideas and plans for the restaurant. On the other hand, if you choose someone who’s your opposite, you could have a lot of problems.

Consider a few specific examples where compatibility can help you and your partner.


Before you bring on a partner, you want to make sure they share your goals. Consider going over where you see the restaurant in the future and plan out some SMART goals.

If the potential partner doesn’t share your goals, you can compromise if everything else is a good fit. However, if you want to keep the restaurant local but they want to make it a national chain, you probably aren’t the best partners.

Having similar goals can help you and your business partner know what to focus on. You don’t need to have a ton of goals right now, but you should figure out if someone has the same overall vision for your restaurant.

As you meet with potential partners, ask them where they see the restaurant in five years. If their goals align with yours, you’ll have an easier time working together.


Another essential thing you should share with a business partner is your values. You don’t have to share all of your personal values, but you should have overlapping business values.

For example, maybe you value community and providing excellent service to your customers. You’ll want to look for a partner who also wants to focus on those things.

If a potential partner values speed over quality, you may butt heads when running the business. That can cause problems for you, your employees, and the customers.


When opening a restaurant, you’ll go through a lot of ups and downs. You should look for a partner who will support you when you need help.

If they can’t solve the problem, they should be willing to get help to fix things. Of course, you can solve problems alone, but it helps to have another person to comfort you or to handle things when you need a break.

Maybe you need to take a sick day, so your partner steps in to manage the restaurant. You can also provide support to your partner when they have problems or need to take some time off.


When deciding how to choose a business partner, make it someone you respect and who respects you. Respecting others in your workplace is vital for the success of your team and overall business.

Without that, you may end up fighting often, and you might struggle to see the other person’s perspective. Now, you can work on building respect with a potential partner.

However, it helps to choose someone you already share a mutual respect with. If you meet with someone and find they don’t respect you or vice versa, the partnership probably won’t be successful.

2. Find Someone Complementary

Another way to find the right partner for opening a restaurant is to examine your strengths and weaknesses. Then, you can look for someone who has strengths in areas you’re lacking.

On the flip side, you can look for a partner who lacks the strengths you have. That will allow you to complement each other, which can help the business succeed.

Running a restaurant requires a few skills, so consider where you could use help. Here are some vital skills to have when working in the food industry.

Business Skills

If you want to open a restaurant because you’re a good cook, look for someone with business skills. You should find a partner who knows about accounting, marketing, and sales.

They can focus on the overall operations of the restaurant, and you can focus on cooking. You’ll be able to develop the menu, and you can work together to find vendors with affordable rates.

A business partner can also help you choose the name and branding for your new place. They might have more insight into what makes a good restaurant name, so you can use that to attract customers.

It can be easy to want to open a restaurant after cooking school. And if you didn’t learn business skills, bringing on a good business partner can fill in those gaps.

Cooking Skills

Maybe you went to school for business but are passionate about food. It makes sense to look for a business partner who’s a chef or who at least has restaurant experience.

You could come up with the best name and business plan, but that won’t matter if you don’t serve good food. Look for someone who’s willing to run a restaurant and who has the cooking skills.

That way, you’ll be able to help them with the business side, and they can help you with the food side. You can work together to create the name and menu to prepare for a successful restaurant opening.

Communication Skills

Running a business also requires you to be able to communicate with people. You need to talk to staff, customers, and vendors, and you need to be able to communicate well.

If you could work on your communication, look for a partner who’s already good at it. Then, they can handle things like customer service issues and negotiating with suppliers.

Even if you’re good at communication, it never hurts to find a partner who is as well. If one of you gets sick or needs to go out of town, someone will be available to talk things out with others.

3. Consider the Long Term

Opening a restaurant isn’t just a one-and-done type of business. After the grand opening, you and your business partner will have to keep working together.

That means you need to find a partner who will be a good fit today, next month, next year, and in the next decade. Even if someone complements your skills and is compatible with you, they might not be the perfect partner.

Here are a few things to think about when it comes to the longevity of your business. Make sure you have these between you and your business partner so that you can succeed.

Financial Stability

One of the best business partner tips is to look for someone with the finances to run your business. Of course, you might want an initial investment to cover the lease and appliances for your restaurant.

However, consider if your partner can get your business a line of credit for more purchases. That way, you’ll have cash flowing in to cover supplies before you start making money.

A partner that has financial stability can step in when your business has a slow period as well. They might be able to loan the business a bit of money until orders pick up.


You’ll also want access to certain resources, financial or otherwise. For example, maybe you need a better point of sale (POS) system, but you don’t know where to start.

A partner who knows of a good POS system can help you select the right tools to take and process orders.

If you’re new to the area, you might not know where the best locations are for restaurants. But you could find a local partner who knows where to rent a space and how to save money on the cost.

Maybe you find a partner who’s worked in the restaurant industry and knows the best vendors. Whatever it is, you’ll need resources to start and grow your business, and the right partner can help with that.


When opening a restaurant for the first time, people may not know to trust you. However, you could bring on a partner with experience that people in the community already know and like.

That could give your new business some credibility and encourage people to give your restaurant a try. This is particularly true if you find a partner who’s a well-known chef.

People might be more willing to try the chef’s food, especially if you’re right out of culinary school. A credible partner can also participate in marketing activities to get the word out about the venue.

Opening a Restaurant Made Easy

Are you opening a restaurant in the future? Be sure to look for a compatible and complementary partner with good business skills and who can help you long-term.

That will give you a better chance of having a successful opening, and you can keep your business going for longer. Soon enough, you may reach your goal of running a restaurant and working for yourself.

Do you need a POS system for your new bar? Contact us to learn which solution is right for you.