4 Questions To Ask Before Starting A Business With Your Life Partner
Have you ever felt that when you get married that you will start a business with your wife or husband? This could be necessitated by the success you may have seen other couples register. It is noble but it has its downsides too. Before starting a business with your life partner, you need to be well prepared.
We are not considering starting a business with a girlfriend or boyfriend because that one is suicidal. What we are focusing is on married couples doing business together.
In the beginning, the idea will look very pleasing and very romantic. Can you imagine having the love of your life by your side every day or most days at least? It sounds very okay. It is very okay until it is no longer okay.
The honeymoon will be over soon and questions will arise over the arrangement. It is much better than you address certain questions before starting a business with your life partner than when you are already in the business. Prevention is always better than cure.
Having drawn your attention to the fact that if you are romanticizing on starting one, you will need to put certain things in place, we will go straight to bringing to your notice questions you will need to ask before starting a business with your life partner.
Things You Need To Know Before Starting A Business With Your Life Partner
What do you know as your strengths and weaknesses?
Before starting a business with your life partner, you will need to know your areas of strength and weaknesses. This is a very important aspect of any business relationship. You are to start a business with people who complement your abilities and not necessarily with people who have the same abilities as you.
If your life partner cannot complement your abilities, you will most likely have issues trying to move the business to the place it ought to be.
According to Angie Stocklin who has successfully run a business with husband; their major selling point was in the differences of their strength and its complementing nature.
In her words, “Our varied strengths and divided responsibilities made us a stronger team because it allowed us to become experts and excel in different areas of the business,” Angie Stocklin said. “We didn’t have competing strengths and therefore quickly learned to rely on the other person to carry their portion of the responsibility.”
In the event that you have the same skill set, there is no need to panic. You can still go into business together but you will be more tactical in your distribution of duties and responsibilities and you may also get external help.
How is your communication?
There is no replacement for effective communication in business. As a matter of fact, it is necessary for any relationship to work. If you for one minute you think you are deficient in communication, you should just not bother starting a business together.
You see, before starting a business with your life partner, you will have to just give a satisfactory answer to the question of communication or you will end up bastardize the arrangement before it will even start.
Partners in a business will most likely disagree on certain parts of the business. This is not necessarily a bad thing. What is really bad is our reaction to these disagreements and the outcome it brings if we don’t communicate our points effectively.
According to Richard Woods of Albany Woodworks, “By communication, I do not mean always agreeing on everything. It is vital to be able to have a difference of opinions and … work through those differences to come to a solution that is best for the company,” he said. “Strong communication also helps establish each individual’s role in the company, dividing and conquering to allow the business to run smoothly and successfully.”
How will you practice work-life balance?
When you are entering a business with an outsider, most times you worry just about the work. The life most times is always secondary. Unfortunately, that cannot be said for entering into business with your spouse.
Before starting a business with your life partner, you will need to know how to balance work and life. You cannot fail in one and succeed in one and consider yourself a success.
The funny part but indeed the truth is that it takes balance in the both to move in the right direction. If your work is suffering, your life will suffer and vice versa.
“It’s hard to separate work and home life,” opined Mike McEwan, who co-founded daily deals website Jane.com with his wife Megan. “We have found the best way to balance this is by putting our marriage and relationship first. We check in with each other a lot. It’s not always easy, but I find it best when I put Megan’s needs and concerns above whatever is happening at Jane.”
Can your relationship produce the right dynamic for the endeavor?
Before starting a business with your life partner, you will need to understand that there is always a dynamic needed to handle the business. Without the dynamic being right, there will always be issues.
The couples must know that commitment and devotion to the business are required to make the business work.
Meg Schmitz, a FranChoice Chicago franchise consultant who mentors couples looking to get into business together, said it’s important to truly know yourself and your spouse before taking the plunge into entrepreneurship as partners. In her consulting work, she includes the spouse at the start of the business investigation and covers each of their interests and concerns about financial investment, the impact of the business on lifestyle, management skills and preferences, their children’s ages (if applicable), and long-term financial goals.