Starting A Business With A Family Member

Copyright (c) 2009 Elizabeth Ross

Running a business requires time, effort and money. Having to manage it with a family member is much more difficult. Misunderstandings would come your way. Here are some tips on how to prevent arguments within the family concerning the business.

A business not succeeding brings so much pain and frustration to all the members of the family. In some cases, when a couple divorces, it becomes a start of a failing business which was once established and successful. Despite the many challenges, are there ways to keep the business in the family?

Build a strong relationship. Starting a business with any family member – a spouse, a sibling, a relative – requires a strong foundation. In order to build a strong family relationship, open communication plays a big role. This is especially true for couples since small problems can easily go out of hand without a strong foundation.

Are you in agreement about issues involved in the business? If not, have you taken the time to talk about those disagreements and come to a solution? What would be the exact responsibility of each family member in the business? These are important questions to consider before going into a business partnership.

Anticipate possible issues. In relation to have an open communication, anticipate possible conflicts that may be encountered along the way and talk about them. Know what each person has to say to deal with a given situation. Discuss issues especially when it comes to money matters.

Who will be in charge of the business money? How will it be spent? How will it be divided? Understanding your family’s perspective on certain issues will prevent possible misunderstandings in the future.

Nurture your personal bond. The importance of being a family should be given priority despite the demands of running the business. Managing a home based business may require a lot of your time and spending quality hours with your family can easily be taken for granted.

For instance, if you’re a couple, don’t overlook the importance of going on dates from time to time. And if you have children, don’t forget to spend quality time with your children as well. Remember, these particular moments should be spent without discussing business matters.

Define responsibilities. There can only be one boss so you have to set boundaries and decide who really makes the final decision when business is concern.

Division of labor should be well-managed to prevent problems. When a responsibility is already given, respect of that authority should be observed.

Define business and family boundaries. It may be a family business but never make the mistake of treating family and business matter as one. If there are problems in the business, make sure that these issues will not be brought inside your home.

Treat your spouse or your children as a family member, a loved one, not as a business partner or a co-worker. After business hours, do your duty as a wife or as a husband. Remember that family always comes first.

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