Involve your spouse, partner and kids in the business. Sit them down and explain what you’re doing and why. Ask them if they’re willing to help and how they’d like to.
One of the key principles in corporate leadership is to get “buy-in” from the entire team. It is shocking how few family entrepreneurs do this. Do it before you plunk down the cash for your franchise or first order of product.
Kids understand when you’re working hard to provide for their needs and to secure their futures; provided you let them in the secret. In most cases, you’ll find them eager and willing to pitch in and understanding when your business duties take you away from them from time to time.
One of my favorite shows is “Shark Tank.” If you’re serious about being an entrepreneur, this show is required viewing.
In a recent episode panelist Mark Cuban directed an important question to a very promising Mompreneur who had obviously stirred the interest of all the Sharks. He posed a hypothetical scenario in which a major prospect, a large retailer, has just called and is willing to meet for a sales presentation on Monday. This meeting can make or break the business and at this point, you won’t get a second chance. The problem is, you’re scheduled to leave on the family vacation that you’ve been planning for months.
What would you do? Take a minute or two and think about it.
Cuban asked the Mom whether, if he invested in her company, she’d be on that plane…to the sales presentation…without an argument.
This Mom said- I’m on the plane. The vacation can wait.
She added that the future of her children was at stake in this business. She had involved them from the start and the kids knew there would be choices like these. Her kids had helped her produce her first inventory. They’d been with it every step of the way.
In this case, she did bring her kids to sales meetings- they were the models for her product!
Your business may be your means for putting a roof over your family’s heads and food in their bellies. Your business may provide college for your children and may give them a standard of living that gives them a head-start in life. Your business may provide for the extra expenses of a special needs child.
In all these scenarios, the needs of your business and the needs of your family must be in synergy. This is not accomplished by simply saying it’s always “family first” at the expense of business. Your attention to your business, done properly is putting family first.
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