The first thing I want you to be clear on is why you’re bringing them on in the first place. If it’s because you feel like it’s the logical thing to do, then rethink the crap out of that idea. Three things come to mind there – resentment, obligation and push-you-off-a-cliff-because-you’re-driving-me-mad annoyance. You wouldn’t hire your friend, your next door neighbor or your dog because they were close to you, so you need to separate your business brain from your Mrs mind.
But, you’re still reading this so you’ve decided that bringing your spouse on board is going to make your biz into something it couldn’t have been if it was only fueled by you and too much coffee. Sweet! It won’t be all fun and games, much like delegating the housework, but if you’ve got solid answers to these four questions then you’re already one step closer to Bey & Jay Z status.
1. WHAT WILL THEIR ROLE BE?
I doubt you’re paying your love to come in to make you coffees all day (although that would be amazing), so what are they bringing to the table?
Set the boundaries and the expectations based on ability, not preference. If you love has put their hand up to do your social media but shrugs when mention FB ads, you might need to rethink the role. Coffee sounds good now, right?
2. WHO HAS THE FINAL SAY?
Potentially messy, but laying it out from point A is crucial. It might be that you’re each responsible for a different zone of genius. It might be that you’re still the head honcho and get the yay or nay vote. If you’re brought them on as a partner then you’ll know what portion of the control they have, but if they’re your employee, you can’t be afraid of pulling them up if need be.
3. WHAT’S THEIR WORKS STYLE LIKE?
You like to work in the morning because you’re not a functioning human being after 9pm. Your spouse is a night owl and wants to be working on that project at midnight. Evernote is your second brain, where all the ideas and brain fart goodness is kept, but your spouse has pieces of paper all over the desk, all over the floor and “hang on, I’ll just find that super important page somewhere… here… it’s here, I know it is… I’ll just… FOUND IT!”.
Delegate work that can be done solo, get them on the bossy babe train or find a happy medium between both work styles. Either way, be prepared for it – just like any other colleague.
4. WHERE ARE YOUR SWITCH OFF BOUNDARIES?
“The couple that plays together stays together.” You’ve heard that before. But when have you heard, “the couple who works together, lives together and occasionally plays together because they’re always talking about work stays together?”
If your waking hours are together for work and together to chill, you’ve got to have your boundaries. Pick a time to switch off and stick to that, or you’ll still be talking about branding instead of bonking, constantly. Life still needs to be functional for you both outside of your work.