Working with your spouse isn’t always an easy thing to do. It has been one year since I made the decision to leave my full-time public sector position and join Karen Jones Consulting Inc. on a full-time basis. While I had been involved in the company part-time since we opened nine years ago, this past year has provided me with a true glimpse of what working with your partner every day can really be like!
For anyone contemplating getting into business with their spouse, or for those that already are working together, here are five strategies that have proved to be very useful for me and Karen.
- Check your ego at the door.
Both people have to respect the position that the other person is in and recognize that a “give and take” approach is needed. Compromising and being mindful of both business and personal perspectives is critical.
- Separate your issues.
Don’t let your personal life interfere with your business life especially when there are other team members involved. Deal with personal issues outside of the workspace.
- Create space.
Be sure you have ample opportunities to work apart from one another so you are not working in close proximity day in and day out. If you can create separate working spaces or offices, that will help to maintain autonomy.
The foundation for success is built on trust.
Without trust for one another, it is difficult to let go of your ego. Trusting your partner to do what is necessary for the best interest of the company within his or her designated role is essential for building a strong team dynamic and setting an example for everyone.
- Prioritize your personal life.
Don’t neglect your personal life and allow yourselves to be completely consumed with business talk. While talking about your business will naturally occur at all times of the day, it is necessary to focus on your personal life as well. Remain committed to spending time together and enjoying family time, hobbies and interests that you share as a couple.
While every couple will have different approaches that work for them, the five tips listed above continue to guide us as we remain committed to growing a business that best meets our clients and team member needs.