A large percentage of new entrepreneurs are operating a family owned business where a husband and wife team are involved daily in the business management. This might cause a unique set of problems. Often many conflicts arise that are outside the framework of managing the business. These personal conflicts between married partners overpower any business problems and should be addressed at the onset of the business. It’s inevitable, when married partners experience conflict the business will suffer. Without communication there is a total breakdown in the business and marriage.
First, the husband and wife business team should outline a complete business plan before any troubles arises. The following tips are effective in alleviating personal conflicts which might affect the business relationship between spouses.
Discuss Business Plans
Both partners should discuss the business intimately to make sure they both share a passion for the business venture. It would be to the detriment of the business to discover later that the wife initially wanted to open a health food store and the husband wanted to invest in a sports bar. But they both decided on a family restaurant because it’s what they thought the other wanted.
Discuss which family obligations might interfere with the business operation and commitments. Decide which is more important, attending your daughters softball game or answering client questions about a new business proposal on the table.
Business Decision Making
Discuss any problems you might encounter in the decision making process concerning the business.
- Who will make financial decisions
- Who will make marketing decisions
- Who is responsible for sales
- Which partner will make major purchases
- Who will work with the clients
- Who will handle the office work
- Will both partners have to agree or will one make all decisions
Business Profit Shares
Agree how the profits will be allocated. Decide beforehand who is responsible for bill payments. What are the partners salaries. How much of the business profit shares will be invested back into the business.
Clearly outline who is responsible for what duties on a daily basis. Write it down in the initial business plans. This will decrease conflicts before they start.
Always treat each other as professionals and with proper respect, recognizing the others unique contribution to the business.
And finally, married business partners should always remember that their marriage is more important than any business conflict that might arise. And they will discover that the benefits surpass any conflict issues that arise. Following this will lead to long term success in the business world and marriage.