For the Love of Money

With the economy swinging like a pendulum, many of us young folk are taking that entrepreneurial stroll.  Although, the economy is the “hot topic,”  we’re going to focus on the other side of the coin and discuss the risk you take by entering the market as an entrepreneur, but more importantly with your significant other.

There are so many questions people ask; Can it actually work? Isn’t that too much time spent together? Do you guys always fight? Who’s in charge? The list goes on, not to mention once you’re out with your best buds for a night, the questions/comments might get more derogative.

Significant other (n.): Two individuals who are in a committed relationship, more importantly, The ONE you end up in bed with at the end of the night.

Back to the topic, perverts…

As co-owner of KC You There, LLC an event management and public relations firm, my business partner is also my girlfriend (not mentioning her name, but I’m sure you can figure it out).

Before entering business with your ol’ ball and chain, here are beginning steps that you may want to consider before doing anything:

  1. Foundation of love and trust
  2. Must have similar interest in common
  3. Set rules and regulations
  4. Think big, start small
  5. Have an exit strategy

Foundation of love and trust

Like any relationship (business or personal), there is a lot of ground work that needs to be established. It’s hard to trust anyone, you need to be level-headed and develop an immense sense of trust in your partner.  Your love for one another has to be unconditional for the good and bad.

Common interest

Have a common interest that you both absolutely love and can commit to.

How can we agree on a topic?

Brainstorming is a crucial piece to the puzzle. Set a date on the process, set aside a week to think. This first step of the process has to be done separately and unprovoked! When you are alone, turn off the television and turn on your thinking cap. Start brainstorming seven interests/ideas that you can possibly see yourself establishing a business around (vice versa with your spouse).

After the one week deadline is up or both parties completed their seven interests within the time frame, compare your ideas with one another. Your personal ideas and interests will truly jump off the paper which can generate deep conversations between yourself and your partner to see if you have any commonality. There might not be an exact match on paper, but with separation of thinking and a joint conversation formulates an equation for success.

Why seven?

Usually, five isn’t enough and most can’t think of ten, it’s not called the lucky seven for nothing.

Set Rules and Regulations

A major problem many couple-entrepreneurs fail at is staying out of each other’s obligations and responsibilities. From the get go, mutually agree on job responsibilities for each other. It’s common nature that one will be better at certain tasks. Remember, it’s not a competition; don’t make one out of it. Flourish from each other’s strengths and improve on weaknesses.

Think Big, Start Small

Create a plan (business plan); it’s called a snow ball effect for a reason! Set long-term goals, set bench marks, and meet those goals. Get a professional counsel team (i.e business lawyer, accountant, marketing/pr, etc.) together to keep all of your business strategies online and intact.

Have an exit strategy

An exit strategy isn’t for winners or quitters. If you either want to bail out or sell your project that’s the purpose of an exit strategy. Ideally, we all want our first venture to succeed, but in reality, more than half fail within the first three years. Does this mean your management and idea was a dead duck?

No, at times things don’t work out for natural reasons. It can be the niche market, economy, competition, or lack in consumer interest. An exit strategy is basically set in stone to see who is responsible and inherits the company’s assets, profits, or debt.

No matter what the future entails, if you do decide to go into business with your significant other I want to make you realize that it is a tough thing to handle. You have to have thick skin and you certainly can not take things personal.  I promise that there will be great success and very proud moments, but there will also be failure. It’s those moments when you fail, that you’ll have each other to keep pushing towards the future.

Don’t let your personal and business relationship cross paths, keep them separate. Remember, the world isn’t always filled with rainbows and gumdrops there will be a few speed bumps down the road. There will be times you may think of strangling one another or kicking each other in the ass, but it comes with the territory.

Remember why you started this in the first place and realize unlike others, you have something that can’t be torn down.

Have questions or need helpful tips on starting your own business either by yourself or with a partner? Don’t fret, feel free to reach out to me at curt{at}kcyouthere{dot}com. Business development is what I do whether it be a start-up company or an established corporation in need of a positive change.

Where are my sunglasses?

Curt

*A special thank you to Eric Winton for his awesome photography skills.

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