“All for one and one for all.” Families generally follow this rule. They live and breathe each other because no matter what happens, family sticks together. However, would the same principle apply if you were to start a family business and be successful as a whole unit?
It is not unheard of. There are plenty of successful family businesses such as Nike, Volkswagen, Samsung and Wal-Mart. But it is no easy task to work with the closest members of your family. Blood runs thicker than water, but this also means the troubles are much worse than other scenarios.
So we have gathered some simple tips you can follow to make sure that your family business becomes a success and you family stays intact:
Set clear boundaries:
When you go into business with your family, it ultimately means that you would have to spend more time than ever with them. What you need to understand before you step into the world of business is that now, the web that ties your family together is indubitably going to be messier. Set clear boundaries on when to talk business and not. Do not bring work home with you, as impossible as that sounds. Know that you are first and foremost a family.
Treat it like a business:
The minute you start to put too much emphasis on family, your business would seem less of a priority. Your non-related employees would stop taking you seriously as your family calls all the shots. This is a very unhealthy approach to business. So treat your business, like a business to avoid getting into unnecessary drawbacks. It may not always bring forth family harmony, but there’s a separate time and place for that.
Treat employees fairly:
Many experts advise against employing family members at all. However, there are many benefits in doing so, even without going into profits. It is always good to have the knowledge and expertise of family members, and you know that they will never steer you to failure. Despite all of that, you should know that nepotism would not do anybody any favors. Do not employee a cousin or an uncle because they’re bored at home if they do not have the basic qualifications. Do not promote your relatives over your non-relative employees. This will definitely lose the respect your employees and clients have in you, and you will have huge pitfalls.
A succession plan for the family business:
Before you take the first step towards your startup business, gather the family members that would join the business and create a succession plan. Do not call for trouble that you could avoid very easily. The plan should clearly state when and how the business would be passed along to the younger generation. Seek outside professional help to avoid bias. You’ll avoid hard feelings and miscommunications.