The pros and cons of going into business with a spouse

Some Pennsylvania couples decide that they can share a business just as well as they share a home, and many married couples do successfully run a business together. But is forming a business with a wife or a husband the right call for you? As with any business formation, there are pros and cons to working with your spouse that should first be considered.

Unlike a scenario where you form a business with a friend, business partners that are married go home together. That means everything you two have done while at work follows you home when closing time comes. There is no way to leave the stresses of work at the workplace, because some of those stresses may have arisen due to business decisions you and your spouse had to make.

According to Entreupenuer.com, sometimes the stresses of work can bleed over into family duties. Spouses that find themselves behind on business duties may carry those stresses into doing ordinary household work like cooking or cleaning. Couples seeking to enter into a business relationship must divide their labor clearly and carefully so that it does not overwhelm them at home.

One benefit of spouses working together is that both partners will have an intimate understanding of each other’s goals and principles. So if a person wants a business partner who shares his or her values, a spouse may be the best choice. Also, people living together understand each other’s family obligations, so if one spouse needs to take time off to attend a child’s baseball game, the other partner will understand.

Additionally, Inc.com points out that if you wish to ask a spouse to be your business partner, you should make the marriage a priority and not the business. If you put the business first, you could endanger both the marriage and the business. Put aside time when you do not discuss the marriage at all. Planning vacations or getaways with the family can help keep the pressures of the business from occupying too much of your daily lives.

You should also be frank with each other about your strengths and weaknesses. If one of you cannot perform a certain business duty, the person should say so. List what you need to make your venture a success and assign the right person to handle that duty. Sometimes you may need to ask an outsider to assess the skills of you and your spouse and to give you proper advice.

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