Many entrepreneurs choose to hire their own family members — one of the upsides to running your own business. You can create a culture at work that shows customers that family is your first priority. However, a family-run business can be a slippery slope and can lead to tense relationships with relatives. There are a few things to keep in mind to make sure everyone has realistic expectations of the position.
Right off the bat, make sure the relative and new employee knows exactly how they will be treated in their new position — which, at least at first, should be as any other employee. Don’t give your relative any special privileges; these should only come with hard work and experience.
Next, it is imperative that you provide a detailed job description. Outline what your relative will be doing, how their position is expected to benefit the company, and how their success and achievements will be measured. Ensure everything is laid out beforehand.
One aspect that can be quite tricky is figuring out to whom your relative answers. Do they answer to the company’s owner? Do they work under another manager? How will said managers treat them in comparison to other employees? It’s important that your relative knows his or her place in the company and knows exactly what to expect from managers and other authority figures.
Lastly, and most importantly, set boundaries. Don’t let things that happen outside of work to enter the workplace. Make sure to never use your relative’s actions in his or her personal life to affect how you view them at work. And if the two of you have a personal issue, don’t bring the issue to work with you.
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