Case Studies

Facilitation Case Study New Partners: The Excitement of a New Venture

Terry and James had known each of for years from professional associations.  They had great mutual respect for each other’s professionalism and reputations.   They even had occasion to collaborate on a big project for nonprofit board, so they knew they could have a productive and enjoyable working relationship.

Because they got along so well, they were very enthusiastic about their decision to join forces officially and become a partnership.  They met regularly for lunch to decide on how they would position their services and expand their markets; there were no disagreements and they very much felt that they had a shared vision for their new business.  However both had failed business partnerships in their past, and were determined to avoid the pain, expense, and drama that were so fresh in their minds... READ MORE

Merging Partners Delve Into Contribution and Control

ClearestView Financial Partners (CV Financial) and Best Perspective Capital (BPC) are two New England-based full-service investment advisory firms that are considering a merger.

CV Financial has three shareholders and is about 5 years old; its principals came from a major wire house. It has grown, mostly through acquisition, to about $2.5 million in annual revenue. BPC has two equal shareholders who have grown their practice to about $2 million in annual revenue, with 3 staff members, over the past 25 years. 

Both firms have had formal valuations of their firms and have shared them with each other. Neither perceives significant issues with the financial terms. They are concerned about other deal terms and the cultural fit of the two firms, however... READ MORE

Partnership Mediation Case Study: New Venture Suffers From Unmet Partner Expectations

George and Nora are partners in a new gourmet food store in an upscale Washington D.C. neighborhood.   The store was starting to gain traction after a rocky first year but their inability to communicate was making it hard to take timely action and they worried that they were missing out on critical opportunities. They agreed that mediation was the best course to try to resolve their issues

The partners met and became friends in business school almost fifteen years ago and had remained friends since then.  They both had experience as management consultants, but neither had run a retail store.  Nora had been in a business partnership previously that had ended very dramatically, and expensively, and was sensitive that this partnership not end as that one had...READ MORE

Succession Planning: Having a Working Partnership For a Transition Period

Maxwell is a very successful sole practitioner who has been in the business for 31 years.  Over the years, success had required adding professional and support staff, but he was still the central figure in almost all of the client relationships.

His personality made sole ownership desirable.  He has thoroughly enjoyed building the business and developing close relationships with clients.  But now his interests have changed.  At age 67, he wants to make sure that the accumulated value in the business is enjoyed by him during his life and is also available to his family. To successfully transition his business, he needs to work closely and cooperatively with a successor.One of his best advisors had already left the firm to go out on her own after the dates implied by the “I’ll retire in 5 years plan” had come and gone.  Maxwell felt frustrated by the time and energy he had invested in that .. READ MORE

Coaching Case Study: Bringing Together Bi-Coastal Partners

Xander and Ben own a two-partner professional services firm with offices in New York and Seattle.  Their business has a lot going for it: they have a strong niche, very solid financials, and an enviable client base. They are building an expertise in their niche and write and speak extensively on the topic.

They originally came to us when they were considering adding another partner and were looking for analysis of their own partnership in order to explore fully what type of person they should look for.  Their partnership had become strained as each of them met with prospective partners but nothing seemed to move forward..Xander and Ben have been partners for about 5 years. They merged their practices after meeting through professional channels and getting to know each other over many years.  They do very little client work together, but have integrated.. READ MORE


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