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3 Ways to Work With Your Spouse

At first blush, it would seem that married couples working together is a recipe for disaster. Sometimes, it is. Some couples end up divorcing, while others lose their jobs because the distractions at work are too high. And yet, it is a phenomenon not uncommon in restaurants.

There are keys to making a work and love relationship with the same person successful. It does not actually matter if the place of business is a restaurant, a gift shop, or a junk yard. By incorporating these three rules at work, you can build a lucrative business with the person you love the most.

Discipline

You need self-discipline to make money, and you need more when your wife/husband/significant other is working next to you.

Good managers create job descriptions that give responsibility for specific duties to different employees. Spouses working together are no different. Each partner needs to focus on his or her tasks, and stay out of the other person's business. Everybody is capable of doing his or her job.

It is the same way at home; for example, he may cook dinner tonight and she will clean up the kitchen after. She won't stand behind her husband and "back-seat drive" while he cooks:"You need more oregano," or "Are you going to put THAT in the stew?" At work, have the discipline to divvy up the tasks, let people perform their duties and focus on getting your own work done.

Honesty

Never sugar-coat the truth to spare your partner's feelings. If you want to run a successful business, require perfection. In a restaurant, that means if something tastes bad you tell your husband, "That tastes awful. Don't serve it."

A true professional is not concerned with ego. It is better to learn from your mistakes and work to do better, but you can't do that if people are lying to you. Be honest with each other about what works well and what must be changed. Be willing to discuss why and how something must change.

Emotional Maturity

It is going to happen: spouses who work together are going to get angry at each other because we are all human. Having emotional maturity does not prevent people from wanting to throw a temper tantrum, but it does prevent them from actually throwing one.

While it is obvious that coworkers should not start screaming at each other in the middle of the dining room, shop floor, or office, you don't want to have that screaming fight at home, either. When emotions are running high, take a breather. It is appropriate to tell a coworker, a friend, or a lover, "I am too upset to talk about this right now. Let's deal with it later." Then follow through and attempt to work things out while calm.

Tell Us What You Think

Have you ever worked with your spouse? Tell us about it in the comments section.

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(Photo Credit: Tomas Sobek/Flickr)

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