Let's take it to an infamous line in Jay-z and Beyonce classic '03 Bonnie & Clyde:
"Cause mami's a rider and I'm a roller
Put us together – how they gon' stop both us?
Whatever she lacks, I'm right over her shoulder
When I'm off track, mami is keepin' me focused"
What does it take to put the power in the term "power couple"? How do you build an empire with the one you love?
We chatted with eight couples to learn the secrets to successfully running a business with a partner. While there may be technical logistics that should be considered before entering a relationship with your significant other, not every arrangement is a recipe for disaster. These couples share how they manage their business while working together, strategies for overcoming common challenges, and the best (and often underappreciated) aspects of working with the one you love.
Note: responses have been condensed for brevity and clarity.
Honor Differences & Keep It Professional
Courtesy of Kenyon & Taccara Martin
Kenyon & Taccara Martin, Owners of The Soul-Ties® Healthy Love Club™, Married
Taccarra: "Don't lead with your relationship. The home dynamic doesn't work the same way in the business. Kenyon and I are VERY traditional with how we govern our home, but our roles in the home are built upon what makes a marriage and family successful, not a business. Those same dynamics do not exist in a business environment. Tough conversations, disagreements, failures, and even successes must be received first impersonally and viewed strategically. After work, we can later celebrate or mourn privately and affectionately.
"The biggest challenges for me and Kenyon arise when we are vision-casting for our business. We now explain it as looking at a map (big picture vision) vs. seeing the turn-by-turn directions on a GPS (how it will be done). I am the Map. Kenyon is GPS turn-by-turn directions. Whenever I go to him with an Idea, it's usually GRAND and exciting. To Kenyon, it's SCARY because while I'm painting a big picture, he's stuck trying to figure out the HOW of it all. And before you know it, we are arguing over the 'how.' In these times, while the argument is about a technical or creative difference, the undertone of that argument becomes about wanting to be acknowledged.
"When Kenyon came up with the analogy of 'Map and GPS,' it changed EVERYTHING for us. Whenever I go to him with an idea, I preface it with, 'OK, this is a MAP conversation…' so he can brace himself to just HEAR me and not react to the anxiety of the 'how' in that moment. If we start getting off track into details, I say, 'map' and he changes his disposition."
Kenyon: "The day after Taccara and I got married, we had a speaking engagement and we've literally worked together every day since. While many say we will get tired of that one day, we honestly don't see that happening. Entrepreneurship is lonely. It's draining. It's tiring. There are very few people who will understand your struggles and celebrate your victories with you. Taccara and I share it all and do it all — together."
Recommended Reading: The Soul-Ties® Detox Book + Journal
Featured image courtesy of Kevin & Melissa Fredericks