When I started in the business (full time) 13 years ago, I joined my mother in the business. I didn’t want to be accused of riding her coat-tails so I farmed my own area. Our business was kept separate. She earned commission on her business, I earned on mine.
We helped each other when needed but did our own thing. After 3 years, my production equaled my mother’s. At that point, she allowed me to become her partner. We then combined the business and at that point it doubled.
As she doesn’t need to work and only does so to keep busy (loves those cruises), I’ve taken over the reins and have grown the business by hiring a business coach and consultant (Corcoran Coaching) and doubled our business 3 years in a row. We now have two full time very talented assistants that affords us both the luxury of not having to micro-manage the “office” details.
The upside to having a partner is that if I don’t “click” with a client, I can have my partner take over or vice verse. In the car business it’s called a “TO” (turn over). I’m sure you’ve experienced this. Your car salesman can’t make a deal so he then calls in his “manager”, who then calls in the “finance person” who then calls in another “manager”. At some point they make the deal!