Working with family is a worthwhile experience that will stretch your boundaries and challenge your character on the daily. Lyndsay and I know this from years of experience and tons of trial and error. Working with my sister has brought out the best and the worst in me at times, and we know EXACTLY how to push each other’s buttons.
We are often asked; “What is it like working with your sister,” “Can you teach me how to create a good working partnership with a family member,” “Should I go into business with my siblings?” These are all very important questions to ask, but they are also questions we don’t necessarily have a black & white answer for. It’s just the reality of the unique relationship we have that is unlike any of the other relationships around us.
I can tell you though, that going into business with a family member is not something to be taken lightly. You will want to make sure you are comfortable sharing the most intimate details of your life with this person, and the other needs to be willing to do the same. You will need to be open about sharing financial details and personal family history often. The reason being that we all go through seasons of stress, hard decision making, and celebration— this person needs to know the ins and outs of your life in order to best serve you as a co-owner and trustworthy friend. Sometimes family is the perfect option for this, and sometimes it is not.
This new reality will become your baby, a 24/7 job that you both have to be all in on. Trying to keep family and work separate is only going to create additional stress and disappointment when you can’t make it happen. (I wrote more about this is my last blog, “Being a Kickass Working Mother“). Make sure everyone is on board and that all feelings, thoughts, and emotions have been laid out on the table before jumping in.
Obviously, going into business with a family member is not for everyone and that’s okay. If this is something you are considering, I urge you to stop and think it through, have an unlimited number of meetings to talk through the process and make sure everyone is on the same page.
The next step is to DO IT! And buckle up baby, because you are in for the ride of your life. I truly believe if you can follow the process I’ve laid out above and keep communication clear, open, and honest you will have much success!
Get out there, kickass, and enjoy! There is no one else in the world I would want to experience this ride with other than my best friend and sister.