So you are looking for a business partner, who better to start your business with than your life partner? The person who gets every aspect of you. It sounds like a great idea, right? Well, that’s not always the case. If you are choosing to dive into the entrepreneurial world with your significant other, there are key takeaways to make sure your relationship stays healthy at home, work, and everywhere in between!
We sat down with our co-founders Kym and Sandra Yancey for insight on just how they have maintained a healthy, loving marriage while creating their multi-million dollar empire. Here are six helpful tips to glow and grow together:
1. Make Sure You Have Distinct and Clear Roles: This should be in place at the start of your business and it’s not just limited to couples. Keep in mind - most successful businesses have clear and concise roles among their team. When your jobs begin to overlap with one another is when there is angst, especially when you have different styles of leading. When you mix it up, chaos ensues. Make sure your roles are always understood when dealing with various clients and projects. This will allow you to maximize your opportunity versus two people doing the same exact thing (and minimizes chances of getting in subtle arguments).
2. Set Clear Boundaries: Create checks and balances within your company and yourselves. Never overstep into the other’s role and if you’re planning to put in your perspective, try to communicate with your significant other or get invited to speak to their team before just sharing your two cents on your own terms. You always want to avoid jumping into another’s project without asking for permission. When boundaries are crossed, you typically begin to see some form of irritation from your significant other.
This goes for times when you must switch up from being the leader to the listener. When someone has the floor give them your undivided attention and don’t interrupt.
3. Be Mindful of What You Say and How You Say It: It’s no secret that the key to any successful marriage or relationship is communication, but when it comes to work you need to be more cautious. It is unprofessional to speak to your partner the way you would speak at home, especially in times of frustration. Remember that words can be hurtful so always be careful what comes out of your mouth and ask yourself, “would I appreciate being spoken to this way at work?” Constantly encourage and boost each other along the way no matter how big or small the stride is.
Another great way to go about it is to remember why you started a business together - going even deeper, is to remember why you wanted to spend the rest of your life with this person. You are here to help each other grow, so be mindful of how that translates.
4. Know When To Turn It Off: No one wants to be all work all the time, and sometimes when you have a 12-hour workday, then talk the entire car ride home about work, discuss it over dinner, and in bed, it becomes too much and the lines get blurred. Try having a safe word that lets your partner know work time is done for the day and it’s time to just be in the moment.
This will come off less like you are uninterested in work and more as “Hey, I just need a little break.” Quality time outside of work and events are key to succeeding in a business partnership with your significant other. Spend time with friends, family, or even just a date night that has nothing to do with work.
5. Never Let The Fun Die: A misinterpretation of a hard-working couple is that they work all the time. Sure, you are running a successful business but remember to always make it fun. Try taking a lunch date one day or hosting a team outing where you are on opposite teams. Always cheer for your partner and compliment them on their accomplishments. Life is about balance. Working with your partner is a blessing and that’s something to celebrate!
Some days will be better than others, but at the end of the day remember to separate your work life and your home life. Run a business with your significant other? Share your favorite tips with us on social media @ewomennetwork!