My Spouse and I Opened a Business and it’s Ruining Our Marriage — What should We Do?

Couples often open businesses together because they recognize that two heads are better than one. It not only allows them to be their own bosses but is usually accompanied by the idea that a joint venture will strengthen their interpersonal relationships. After all, running a business together will mean they must be more open and communicative, and therefore it ought to bring them closer together as they work together on their shared dream. But, sometimes couples have very different ideas about how to build and run new businesses and this can easily lead to a lot of conflicts. Fortunately, there are some strategies couples can use if they are experiencing problems in their small businesses.

The Hidden ‘I’ in T-e-a-m

Make no mistake about it, every joint venture depends on individuals. Two or more people have to come together in a meeting of the minds and spirit in order to make it ultimately work. This starts with an individual choice to pool skills, talents, and resources together once this decision is made and forces are joined together, the business should have what it needs to succeed. However, sometimes individuals can’t get out of their own way and that’s when the problems begin.
When things get tough, refer back to your joint goals. Running a business isn’t easy, and when both you and your spouse are involved, that means your livelihood is hanging in the balance of the business you share. Instead of letting this fill you with stress and anxiety, instead, let it fill you with excitement and passion for the work you do. Be a support for each other, so when one of you gets stressed or worried, the other can remind you why you started. —Small Business Trends
In other words, there has to be the right mixture of individualism and teamwork in order to make the relationship work. For example, constantly jocking for power will eventually lead to serious issues. If one spouse tells their employees one thing and the other spouse contradicts that, there’s obviously going to the at least some confusion and conflict. This is why successful businesses have defined roles for everyone involved. Doing so greatly increases communication, productivity, and also expectations.

How Spouses can Successfully Run a Business Together

If you and your spouse are experiencing problems in your business that are affecting your personal relationship, you’re definitely not the first and won’t be the last. The good news is there are steps you can take to reduce or eliminate conflict, such as the following:
  • Mutually define individual roles. Both of you are responsible for running the business, but that doesn’t mean that both of you should be caring out the same roles. Take some time to talk over and outline your individual roles and responsibilities so there’s no miscommunication or unnecessary redundancy.
  • Layout and set your expectations. Each of you has an idea of what you want from the other. But unless you communicate that clearly, there’s no way to truly know what you want out of one another. This will take a little trial and error but you can eventually find tune it in this will be a huge help in running the business efficiently.
  • Leave home at home when you’re at work. There’s a reason that large corporations discourage romantic relationships between colleagues. When you bring your home life to work, you can expect to bring all of those issues into your place of business. Obviously, there’s no good that can come from this, so leave home at home while you’re at work.
What other ways can spouses resolve their problems while running a business together? Please share your thoughts and experiences so others can benefit from your input. Interested in learning more about business? Then just visit Waters Business Consulting Group.

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