Work With a Friend
Work With a Friend

Work With a Friend

Trust Agents

I had lunch with a friend yesterday and talked about how he started his business over a year ago as well as how we can work together in the future.  I then met with a new contact who had started his career in financial sales and was looking to transition into software sales. He was looking for insight on how to make that change.  Toward the end of the day, I spoke with one of my lifetime friends about how his position at work may be in jeopardy.  He sounded disheartened, and all I could think about was how can I help him land a new job if he’s laid off.

Handshake Every one of those encounters reminded me of one ideal I now live by: I only work with friends.

Some may cringe at the thought.  I certainly did the first time someone told me this.  My father had taught me never to enter any business transaction with friends at the fear of ruining friendships.  Many of my mentors have told me I should treat people at work as just that: people at work and at an arm’s length.  After all, they’re acquaintances, not friends. 

I don’t buy into any of these and I don’t think you should either. I love working with friends.  There are many advantages to it.  Here are but a few:

  1. Loyalty: Friends are loyal to one another.  As a result, if temptation arises to abandon a friend in the middle of a deal, they’ll think twice about it.
  2. Reliability: Because friends value their friendships and wish to keep it they’ll also do their best for one another.  That means they’ll show up when they say they will, deliver what they promise, and be there when you need their help the most.
  3. Security: Friends you can trust with your personal secrets, you feel you can also trust with your business secrets.  Though everyone will still sign their non-disclosure agreements, keeping company trade secrets is what they’ll inherently give each other.

Any argument for drawbacks of working with a friend state the opposite of the advantages.  They often revolve around why you wouldn’t want to ruin a relationship by putting a friend on the spot for not delivering or for poor performance.  My response is that you likely don’t trust that person as a friend to begin with. So, you’re right! You shouldn’t do business with him.

Friends2 Keep in mind, I don’t use the word “friend” loosely.  I’m talking about people you feel you can confide in and rely on before you ever do any kind of business with.  I’m not talking about the guy or gal that you meet and have a one-time cup of coffee with.  Friendship takes many months and years to build. It requires all the little tests we have for defining who’s a true friend and who isn’t.

So, go ahead and determine who are your true friends…and don’t be shy to work with them either!

What Do You Think?

Feel free to comment below about the people you work with.


Photo Credits: freakapotimus and StuSeeger


  1. GolferNewb

    I think working WITH friends is fine but could be dangerous. I am against working for or having friends work for you. I believe that friends although trusted and reliable, are rare and to work with them could introduce too many personal feelings and emotions into the workplace. No matter the discussions about professionalism and a difference outside of the workplace the view will always be skewed.

  2. Unknown

    As an added note, I read about a free article by Tony Robins that had a very interesting quote:

    "In times of constant change, trust becomes the new currency of business. Who do customers trust? Unfortunately, most don't trust companies. A global study on consumer trust found that people trust friends over businesses. Nearly half of the study participants trust suggestions from friends, while only 27 percent believe what's on a company's website and a mere 18 percent trust what's in the company brochure."

    You can read an excerpt of the free paper and apply to read the complete white paper here:

    DISCLAIMER: I've never bought anything from Tony Robins, nor am I in any way affiliated with him.

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