Buying a Franchise With Your Spouse?
Owning a business with your spouse is just one of the financial benefits you can enjoy if you have a solid and stable marriage. A lot of married people today are co-owners of medium sized businesses and even some big corporations. One of the most recommended ways to accomplish this is to buy a franchise. You and your spouse already know how to successfully manage a household, so why not take the next move and run a business? Just like in any relationship, there are some pitfalls you need to avoid and red flags you need to take note of. The concept of a conjugal business is not for everyone but if you are really determined to buy a franchise, your spouse can be your ideal business partner. Here are eight tips to consider if you plan to buy a franchise with your spouse.
1) Thoroughly examine your skills and interests. Everyone has a unique set of skills and abilities in various areas. You may be good at math while your spouse may find it tedious to balance the checkbooks. Your spouse may, instead enjoy talking and mingling with people, attend parties and get-togethers; activities that you usually wince at. Create a list of responsibilities you and your spouse will have as franchise owners. These may include marketing, management, inventory restocking, etc. Review all these with your partner based on your respective skills and interests. In case you two share closely similar skill sets, you may want to consider looking for an employee or another partner who can fill in those responsibilities.
2) Divide all the tasks. Using the list of responsibilities you made, divide all the tasks between you and your spouse. This way, you can ensure productivity and efficiency in your partnership. Assigning one of you as the person in charge of a specific task makes it less confusing for your staff. When a married couple owns a franchise together, it is easier for the employees to address issues accordingly when the responsibilities of each partner are clearly explained to everyone.
3) Observe professionalism. Showing outward signs of professionalism in the business is probably one of the most challenging aspects of owning a franchise with your spouse. Remember that your employees, clients, and suppliers may feel uncomfortable if you two display personal feelings in the workplace, whether positive or negative. Such discomfort can turn a happy working environment into an awkward one. Trust is essential in building owner-employee relationships. You won't win you employees' trust and respect if you let your personal life affect corporate decisions.
4) Spend time apart. Even the most affectionate and loving married couples need some time alone, especially when both run a business together. Excessive time at work can lead to stress, even at home. Twenty-four/seven relationships are hard to maintain over a long period of time. The best way to resolve this problem is to set different individual work schedules. For instance, one may be in charge of the opening hours while the other takes care of the closing shift. As such, you two still have a lot of time together, yet each enjoys a break at the start or end of the workday. If you own a work at home franchise, trade tasks occasionally. One partner can be responsible for making sales calls today, while the other does it tomorrow. This gives you and your spouse some alone time and a chance to look at the business from your spouse's standpoint.
5) Respect each other's views and ideas. Assuming that other people think the same way you do is among the common mistakes most people make. Just because you breathe and live your business does not mean that your partner feels the same way. There are couples who can work together from day 'till night and can still talk about business even before bedtime. There are also those who want to set business aside when work hours are over. Discuss this with your spouse to avoid having problems at home.
6) Learn to recognize stress. Starting a business can be a stressful endeavor for anyone. Stress is even more intense for married couples who own and run a business together. Other than spending time apart each other at least twice a week, it is also a must for couples to get away from their business altogether. Even if this seems unlikely during the startup phase, stress can be avoided if you two enjoy the profits of your business, live life, and have fun. It is best to have something to look forward to at the end of the busy business season. Do not hesitate to go away on a trip far from your business so you can both fully relax and unwind.
7) Separate your personal and business expenses. With some married couples, the husband is in charge of the bills and the investment portfolio. In other couples, it is the wife who handles all these. In most occasions, both parties share responsibilities and duties or divide them. Once a couple acquires a franchise business, their daily life patterns migrate into their business. With this, you need to keep your personal finances separate from your business. Apart from keeping you organized, this is also very essential in financial recordkeeping. It makes sense to have one partner balance the checkbook for home and the other one to look after the business finances.
8) Have fun in running your business together. Many people buy a franchise business because they are tired of working in a corporate setup. Some want to secure their future finances. As a married couple, owning your own business together should be a fun endeavor. While there are huge risks involved and the success of your business relying entirely on your management skills, the entrepreneurial experience can be very exciting and rewarding. Make sure to enjoy this experience together with your spouse.