Relationships Vs Partnerships


Have you ever actually asked yourself this question?

“What is the difference between a relationship and partnership?”

I was thinking that maybe I can learn a bit more about this subject from looking at them both from a business and personal perspective.

In business is it pretty easy to tell but sill hazy. For example most people have business relationships, sharing and exchanging data, clients, money even contracts but still with one person or business being much more in control than the other. So maybe the difference lies in the power or control one has that decides if it is a relationship or partnership and maybe that applies to personal relationships/partnerships also.

For me a partnership is where there is much more involvement, commitment, risk and reward from both parties.

Having said that, the word “relationship” used in personal relationships, may be missing the mark. That is, if a couple are looking to have a family together then I would say that they would be aiming to have a partnership together but maybe they start with a relationship and progress.

So a partnership is then a progression from relationship, maybe?

If this is the case, then when applied to business again, it might be a good idea before any business partnership is formed that a business relationship is formed first.

My project for the last 30 years has been:
“To understand and form processes that help enhance business and personal relationships and partnerships.”

Understanding the differences between relationships and partnerships then is an obvious next step for this process, in my view, and something I have failed to ask so far.

Personal Relationships/Partnerships

This seems like a good article on the subject within personal relationships and partnerships:


Maybe some of these points could be applied to business relationships and partnerships also.

Business Partnerships/Relationships

What is Partnership?
“The relationship which subsists between two or more persons
carrying on a business in common with a view to private gain”

This is a good slide share of what a partnership is in business

Forms of partnership & difference between them.

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