No, this isn’t a dating manual for interoffice romance. This is a way for you and your spouse (or significant other) to run a business in the same household, without ruining yourselves as a couple.
Let’s face it, growing a business is hard work. We also know that it takes effort to have a fantastic relationship. Mixing the two can be the recipe for disaster...or an amazing growth experience. Follow these steps to properly mix love and business.
Set clear business boundaries
Always to remember to support your partner in their efforts and allows them time, without grumbling, to do the necessary tasks. Only be involved when it is asked for an outside opinion. Try to avoid moving into the other’s territory without invitation.
If you are working on a business together then the boundaries will be more intermingled, but still must be somewhat defined. For example perhaps you are the creative and she is the business builder. Keeping from criticizing each other in your areas of expertise is absolutely necessary for relational harmony.
Set specific business hours
Treat your business like a job, at least as far as time is concerned. Have specific days and times dedicated to writing. During those times ensure your partner is works on their work duties. If you are going to reach your long term dreams then you must have regularly scheduled times to work on your businesses.
For home based businesses be careful that chores around the house don’t encroach on your business time. Dishes, mowing the lawn, laundry and many other tasks must be completed, but if you would not do them at an office then don’t do them during your business hours.
Create mutual goals
Whether you are building one business together, two separate businesses or only one of you is the entrepreneur, goals need to be set. However because you are in a loving relationship these goals should be shared with each other. Consider them household goals. In one of your working spaces try to include a whiteboard with inspirational quotes, pictures of places you want to visit and numeric goals.
These goals are for both of you. With the goals constantly in front of you, you both have incentive and reminders to help each other reach those goals. It’s a positive encouragement cycle.
Celebrate each other’s successes
Let each other know what a wonderful job they are doing.
Each of you have unique talents. When those talents lead to a win, large or small, celebrating with the one we love most makes it much sweeter.
Schedule couple time
Dating is not optional. Just like you need to set business times you must set couple times. Sometimes try to go out and have a dinner date or a movie, sometimes it’s going out shopping together, sometimes it’s a quiet evening at home.
Those times are all important in your relationship. Don’t spend them going over numbers, planning your next marketing campaign or on any other business activity. This is when you recharge as a couple and grow closer together. Keep these times precious.
Put your relationship first
In business it’s easy to get very wrapped up in a task or project. When working, you are tightly focused and tend to not appreciate interruptions. However sometimes couple things come up which must worked through immediately. When this happens I stop working and focus on your spouse.
The reason you are building this business is to enjoy the freedom of time with your partner. So it would be ridiculous to end up a very successful entrepreneur but be all alone. Your partner's needs trump anything related to the business. Be careful here, this one will creep up on you. Always put the relationship first.
You can have a wonderful relationship and a thriving business, but only if you properly nurture both. Creating boundaries, setting mutual goals and celebrating successes will help you stay on track together. Creating business hours and scheduling couple time will make the clock your friend for both profit and love. Putting your relationship first makes sure that your priorities are always properly aligned...along with your heart.