Business, Singapore
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On business partnerships and the alignment of values.

Recently I’d been thinking hard about choosing the most suitable types of people to work with. For it’s quite clear that nobody can succeed alone.

So today I want to take some time out to blog about the alignment of values in business partnerships. This is a reflections post after talking at length with my friends and business mentors: D’niel, Dr. Sun and Raymond.

For the convenient definition, let’s define “values” as “principles guiding behaviour/ what should be executed” and “vision” can be defined as “what should be the end goal”. “Interest” can be defined as “what is the benefit to each party”.

On the importance of being grounded.

To start off, a person should never take full credit for his or her success, because without the support of the people and institutions around you, it’s not possible to succeed.

Narcissistic people by definition however, will always take full credit. So it is very important to avoid working with narcissists. For narcissistic people will make you suffer in the short-term, and nobody in the right mind would want to work with an attention-seeker in the long-run.

So why bother even collaborating with a narcissistic person? It’s best to wait a bit instead to avoid incurring the opportunity cost of being able to work super well with someone of the same value later in life.

Value here is defined as the principles of behaviour in the business context.

On the alignment of values.

Take the blogging industry for example.

When it comes to “verifiables”, people who have been blogging for some time like myself have access to back-end data. We know that being read is an entirely different issue from writing whatever we want to write. There is always an agenda to writing, blogging and communication.

So there is are significant differences:

if I blog for money, if I blog for fun, or if I blog to promote a political agenda.

Of course, in the event that I don’t work for or with anyone else, nobody would care.

But if I want to be a little more ambitious, then I should collaborate with someone with the same philosophy as myself. However, I must then make sure that the partner has the same philosophy that I do, that it IS:

  • a great thing to blog for money;
  • okay to write absolutely nonsense posts if that is what the client wants;
  • perfectly find to go all out to convert my readers to a particular political agenda.

This is because there are all sorts of value systems when it comes to blogging. Some bloggers don’t even believe in monetization. Some people don’t believe that bimbotic and serious blog posts should coexist on one blog. Others don’t believe that a business blog should be mixed with a political agenda.

So my point is this: Passionate business partners who start their collaboration with different philosophies would probably end up killing each other, or burn-out.


Because the niche area is personally important to these people, but they differ strongly on what should be in terms of thought and execution. They might even end up finding each other unethical.

Take for instance the sensitive issue of racism. Let’s say I want to fight it, and I’d found a fellow person X who hates racism as much as I do. We are excited to find out that we both are excited about combating racism. And before starting the collaboration, we discuss expectations.

My strategy to combat racism would be to work with the current (probably racist) establishment, to slowly change their views. So I don’t rock the yacht but attempt to convince the sailors on board to change directions.

Person X might end up denouncing the current establishment altogether, and want to start his/her own. So he wants to steer his own boat to fight or replace the current bigger yacht.

I might find X stupid while X might feel that I’m a traitor to the cause. So instead of me trying to change X or vice versa, why not spend that time looking for people with the same values to work with?

The world is so big and we have social media today. It’s SO EASY to find people of the same values, if only if we just use our brains! 😀

Indeed, instead of trying to change that potential business partner with a different value system, why not just cut the pain, move on, and look for someone else with more similar values?

It’s actually very simple, isn’t it?

And more importantly, trying to change people is a waste of time, money, energy and incurs opportunity costs. With the energy you save by working with the right group of people, you can do so much more freely and effortlessly! 😀

To be honest, I cannot remember already why I once tried to change people. I guess it is because I wanted to make a difference in the world, that I thought I was always correct and my obligation to correct people with different views than myself, that I used to tend to take things personally, or that I can’t really deal well with failure. We should never try to change people; that’s a terrible thing to do to yourself and the person involved.

Any attempts to change people will make them hate you, because people are what/who they are due to a series of mistakes, failures, successes and luck. They also carry various forms of emotional burden which they might pour unto you if you are not careful.

But I guess we should always try to be open by listening, and listening actively. Just don’t start work before finding out the other party’s various expectations.

Anyway today I’m personally convinced that I’d just saved 10 years of my future life. Thanks a zil D’Niel, Dr. Sun and Ray LOL!~~

If you would like to know more about how your personality affects your business, feel free to take the wealth creation blueprint here. This blueprint is a creation by these three of my business mentors. They took one year to plan it, so it’s a really elegant and simple plan!

This entry was posted in: Business, Singapore


Hi! This is Wan Wei and some affectionately call me WW. As a naturally curious person, I have interviewed over 100 inspiring politicians, C-level executives, entrepreneurs and influencers globally! Also Editor in Chief at IKIGUIDE (, Asia's first portal on personal branding.

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