The idea of working together 12 years ago sounded like heaven. Then came the reality for us. Have to love when that happens, right? It felt like hell in the beginning. The one thing we knew was we had to figure this thing called partnership out (and fast)!
If we had started on the right foot …
… the outcome in the beginning would have been completely different.
We had power struggles, we had no boundaries, we were workaholics, we were constantly correcting and instructing each other.
A Recipe for Disaster
However, here comes the good news. We made it work! And, we learned how to inspire each other. We learned how to ‘complete’ each other not ‘compete’ with each other.
It is so fun to see each other do something we are good at and more importantly, passionate about. We get to see each other in action and there’s no feeling like it really. It is these moments that make us proud of each other — and this makes us feel better about each other.
The trust you have in your spouse is greater than you are likely to have with any other business partner in your life. It can be exciting to share the joys of accomplishment together. And as a business professional, you’re apt to learn more and learn faster. And, you are likely to see or be open to different perspectives.
Because you’re able to be so vulnerable with each other.
One challenge we had though was that we didn’t have the hard conversations before taking the plunge. We didn’t necessarily talk about what happens when we need to make changes to our business plan, or what the right strategy was.
We made assumptions because we both thought each other already knew and understood the other person. Additionally, we assumed we already knew each other’s perspective.
It was from this, we started to take the time out to create a sound partnership by being in agreement with our core values and philosophy of doing business.
We created the Zolecki Mission Statement with our Vision, Purpose and Goals
Our 5 Best Practices that are Crucial to a Partnership
Be a strength finder.
Know each other strengths and play to them. You might be asking yourself, ‘how do you find each other’s strengths?’
Watch your partner “DO” the business. Watch what comes naturally to them. Focus on what each other are good at. Here’s the deal when we focus on a weakness, we magnify it — subconsciously maybe, but we do — this helps nobody, especially your partnership.
Celebrate each other’s differences. It is your obligation to help your partner shine. Avoid being overpowering or overbearing, and understand you are ONE in this business. The thing about marriage and the separation of duties and responsibilities is that it’s never 50/50 all of the time.
Sometimes it’s 80/20, and sometimes it’s 60/40. In our partnership even, there are times when one of us is doing all the hard work, and the other one has an easier ride. You need to be flexible. You need to be OK with carrying the other person sometimes. And, you have to be OK with letting the other person carry you, too.
Seek outside counsel at least once a month.
This is so important. We have found ourself many of times in need of someone from the outside to give us another perspective and guidance. It is a great buffer for us. It allows us to see the bigger picture — another point of view.
We have several mentors that are fantastic sounding boards for us. Seeking out a mentor or your own sounding board is key when building as a partnership — Please feel free to reach out to us for support in this area. It would be our pleasure!
Be an open book and communicate authentically.
Make a pact to talk about it all. The good, the bad, and the ugly. We have a rule in our business that when it comes to communication, we are not allowed to instruct or correct each other.
We can only encourage and listen! Your rules may look a little different, but make sure you have them established up front. After all, we went through this in hopes others wouldn’t have to. A means of shortening the learning curve resulting in quicker growth phases.
Communication and authenticity are pivotal in any type of partnership — this business of network marketing, is certainly no different. These two traits are without question, a necessity.
Be conscious and intentional when managing boundaries. On a daily basis, it is helpful that there be time for us to be together, without work. Otherwise, the urgency or demand of your business will crush everything else. When you are business partners and spouses, you have to realize that there are always things to do.
And this doesn’t stop, especially when you’re successful.
We had to remember the importance of romance in our life. When you are working all day together, it is not easy to transition to our personal life. During our workday we talk more abrupt and hurried. We have learned to make a shift from tough to tender behavior in our personal time.
There was no question — we had to make it a habit.
We have to schedule it in and also have a weekly mandatory date night. No exceptions, we make it happen.
It is also important to take ‘you’ time. Self-care is everything. When you’re married to your business partner, you don’t have the opportunity to separate and decompress. Find that time. Your partnership (s) may (more than likely) depend on that.
Enjoy the adventure!
Our partnership has brought us closer together! It has exposed every part of us and made us vulnerable as a unit. We have experienced quantum growth in every area of our life. It has allowed us to have very different experiences together rather than if we were on our own.
“The mark of a good marriage is partnership continuing to feel inspired by your spouse.” – Olivia Wilde
Working together in a partnership has added richness and romance to our marriage. We have learned to respect and admire each other in new ways as a result. And, we truly can’t imagine building our dream with anyone else or any other way.