My husband Dennis and I have been in business together for 26 years. We often hear "how do you do that! I would NEVER work with my spouse".
Prior to starting Steel Pony, I had another business with other partners. I found , for me, that each partner had their own agenda with their own spouses whispering in their ear. Suddenly it seemed I had 4 partners instead of 2. After that experience, I said the only partner I would be in business with I would have to marry. Be careful what you wish for LOL.
HOW DO WE DO THAT? HERE IS HOW
1. We have compatible strengths Figure out who will do what job upfront. Dennis and I are both artists but I am the one with the patience to do the books.
2. Don't bring work home with you. Ok do as I say not as I do.
3. Always be respectful of each other. If you are angry with your spouse , do not belittle them in public. Wait to have those conversations when you are alone.
4. Decide on a common goal and check in often. If you are not on the same page, conflicts will occur.
5. Find ways to maintain your individuality. Make time away from your spouse. A yoga class, dinner with friends for example.
6. Communication is vital. I have to admit, this one has been difficult for me. I am not that good at communicating needs and desires. It is important if you are going to enjoy your business and your relationship.
7. Major decisions must be a joint decision. Try to make an appointment with each other to have a meeting where you can discuss, debate and decide. The 3 D's.
8. Be open and surround yourself with people like you. Connect with a mastermind or peer group that you can discuss your business with in a confidential format. It helps to keep you fresh and bring new ideas into the business. I have been lucky enough to have found the Great Dames. With them, I am exploring both my personal and professional needs and wants.
I hope this helps those of you thinking about taking the plunge. I would love to hear your stories. Write it in the comments below.