Episode 109 – The Truth about working with your significant other

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Kristin and I have been working with each other in small business since 2005. We have seen lots of good and bad times since we started working together. We have learned the most important truth about working with your spouse. 

A family business is no place for a weak marriage

The truth is maintaining a great marriage is work. No matter how much you love each other. Between survival, family, and friends many marriages strain. In 2015 16.9 divorces happened per 1,000 married women according to researchers at Bowling Green State University.  That is over 1.1 Million woman in 2015 alone and that was a good year.

You risk going from husband and wife to business partners.

However, all is not lost. There have been many family businesses that have stood the test of time. They have not only survived the marriage, they have not gone out of business. And to be honest, even if your spouse is not officially part of your small business they often help out the entrepreneur of the family run their business. 

The most important thing you can do is learn your 3 Rs

Not the 3 Rs of school. The 3 Rs of working with your significant other. 

  • Roles
  • Respect
  • Responsibilities


You both need to have defined roles within the small business. The roles act as an easy way to define what part of the business each person takes the lead.  PROTIP: The roles should be based on strengths and might not be split in half.


You need to understand your spouse's strengths and respect their roles in the business and be grateful for how they help. PROTIP: This works great for the rest of your life as well.



There also needs to be responsibilities defined by the roles and respected by the other spouse. If there are limitations to their authority it needs to be defined ahead of time.


Join Kristin and I as we talk about our observations about working with your spouse.

Images for Episode 109


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