I now pronounce you, trade business partners

As you stood at the altar and gave your wedding vows, I bet that the phrase “trade business partners” probably wasn’t included.

It’s a common trend that with so many small businesses, life partners end up intertwined in the business in some capacity. Often it’s because as business owners, in our early days, we struggle to balance being on the tools eight hours a day, and all the ‘admin’ stuff that goes with running a trade business, we just need a helping hand!

As a result, we end up leaning on our partners for support in order to keep the business running.

Running a trade business can be, more often than not, extremely taxing. Divorce rates are sky high with tradies, in no small part because of the strain and pressure of keeping a business afloat.

That’s why it’s critical that you understand some basic tools and techniques for working with your partner in the business.

In my plumbing business, Dr.DRiP, my wife Ange has been a part of the business for many years now, however, in our early days it was not smooth sailing and we made some mistakes around how we went about working with one another.

Based on my experience, and the collective experience of our Lifestyle Tradie Members, these are my top THREE things to note when your partner is involved in the business.

  1. Separation from home and work
  2. When your business desk is your kitchen table, this can sound like an impossible task.
    Setting clear work hours; i.e. 8 am – 4 pm is a great way to make this separation. Work-related topics can ONLY be discussed during this time frame, unless pressingly urgent. This allows you to have a break from “work work work” and be able to spend time with one another.

  3. Keep it professional
  4. When speaking to each, consider, would you speak the same way to any other colleague? If the answer is no, then you need to reconsider your approach. By keeping this professional overtone, you show clear respect for one another, which will benefit your professional relationship and your personal life. It also sets a great example for your staff as well!

  5. Set clear roles and responsibilities
  6. This is THE MOST IMPORTANT step, if you and your partner have clearly defined roles within the business, which has been communicated to your staff, then you avoid stepping on each other’s toes. It’s clear what responsibilities lie with each person, as you would receive in any standard job description. It’s simple, effective and truly necessary.

These are not mind-blowing ‘never heard before’ steps, but they are something we often forget or ignore when it comes to working with our partners. If you and your partner are struggling to maintain your relationship and the pressures of running your business are becoming all too much, let’s chat.

Book in a FREE Strategy Session with me, Andy, and together we can review your entire business, identify the key areas in which you need support and work as a team to address them.