You’re dedicated to building a life together and perhaps that includes turning your passions and skills into a profitable venture. Have you considered starting a business with your spouse? If so, here are six tips to ensure your success.
1. Understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses
Many entrepreneurs choose co-founders to level up on their combined strengths – the context being two people can often be better than what one could do alone. In marriage, and business, the idea is that the sum is greater than its separate parts.
However, it’s important for married business partners to have a clear grasp on each other’s strengths and weaknesses. This is key to dealing with predictable areas of conflict every partnership will face. It also can help you define each others roles within the business more easily.
2. Offer support to each other
Observe each other and give encouraging and complimentary feedback. “The word encourage means ‘to inspire courage.’ All of us have areas in which we feel insecure and lack courage, and that lack of courage often hinders us from accomplishing the positive things that we would like to do. The latent potential within your spouse may await your encouraging words.”
Power couple, Chris and Crystal English Sacca are a good example of a successful husband and wife team. Sacca formed Lowercase Capital, a venture capital firm of which Crystal English is a partner. English isn’t just known as Chris Sacca’s wife, however. She is also a best-selling author. They support each other in business and in their personal lives and you and your spouse should too.
3. Establish a mutual vision
Before you start a business with your spouse, create a business plan alongside a mission statement and vision statement. A shared vision will act as guiding principles and inform your short and long-term goals. Most importantly, openly discuss the vision for your marriage and how a business will complement it. Entrepreneur recommends, “List what your successful business affords for the both of you long-term.”
4. Prioritize work and life responsibilities
This is a no-brainer but your marriage comes first. In marriage, “disaster often strikes when one or both people in the couple check out.” So, don’t check into the office each day and keep your home life on the back burner. Unmet needs, a lack of communication and misplaced priorities can cost you your business and your marriage.
Establish work-life boundaries from day one and hold each other accountable. Be present as a spouse and as a business partner and eliminate or shift distractions that work against you individually and as a couple.
5. Pop open the champagne
Starting a business is not easy. Starting a business with your spouse is a great feat. As you grow in your marriage and business, set milestones and celebrate along the way. Co-existing as business partners is hard at times, and marriage adds a new dynamic to any business relationship. So don’t forget why you started in the first place. Give each other well-deserved applause and a pat on the back for large and small wins.
“When you celebrate, endorphins are released inside your body and you feel incredible… So much of what we do in our business is driven (or limited) by our psychology. Celebrating your wins not only feels great physically, but it reinforces the behavior you want to show up when you face a new challenge or opportunity.”
6. Don’t forget to have fun
Albert Einstein once said, “Creativity is intelligence having fun.” So don’t forget to work hard and play too – in and out of the office. We know that positive psychology has a profound impact in the workplace and will make your company more enjoyable and productive. Simply put, having fun makes us happy.
Psychologist Shawn Achor suggests that happiness inspires us to be more productive in a number of ways. “Because dopamine, which floods into your system when you’re positive, has two functions. Not only does it make you happier, it turns on all of the learning centers in your brain allowing you to adapt to the world in a different way.” Making fun a priority will not only make you work smarter it can also help you build lasting bonds.
Do you and your husband have what it takes to become a power couple? Perhaps the next Chris and Crystal English Sacca? You bet you do! Be open, honest, and willing to communicate wholeheartedly. You will succeed in business by applying the same love and respect you have for each other in your marriage.