- Listen to your partner’s viewpoint and understand their perspective to be able to address their concerns.
- Have patience and set boundaries to keep feelings in check and have a constructive conversation.
- Seek professional help from marriage counselors, business consultants, or legal counsel if needed.
- Keep business disputes away from home and remember shared goals to stay focused on successful solutions.
Starting and running a business with your partner can be a gratifying experience, both professionally and personally. However, disputes between business partners are often unavoidable and can strain the relationship if not handled properly. This article discusses how married couples can successfully manage business disagreements to preserve the marriage while finding solutions that work to resolve business disputes.
Understand Your Partner First
Before resolving conflicts between you and your spouse, you must understand their viewpoint. Each individual brings their perspective when dealing with issues, which means listening is vital for successful communication and conflict resolution. Ensuring you know where your partner is coming from will enable you to address their concerns better and hopefully compromise on areas of disagreement.
When dealing with any kind of conflict, especially involving a business decision, it pays off to take a step back and approach things calmly. Those moments of frustration when conversations become heated do not lead anywhere productive as they are usually reactionary rather than focused on problem-solving. By taking a moment to cool down so that more logical problem-solving strategies can be employed, your chances of reaching an amicable agreement will increase exponentially.
In addition to having patience during the dispute resolution process, setting boundaries is also crucial for progress to be made without further agitating either party involved. Establishing ground rules such as ‘no name calling’ or ‘no interrupting each other’ beforehand ensures that feelings are kept in check, and a constructive conversation ensues instead of nonsensical bickering. Of course, this should also apply outside of resolving conflicts. Try to maintain respect for one another even when there isn’t an issue at hand — it may prevent future problems.
Seek Professional Support
If there isn’t much data available regarding a particular dispute, or all parties involved haven’t been able to reach a common ground after multiple attempts, enlisting professional help should always remain an option. Some people you can work with include the following:
Having professional marriage counseling is beneficial for considering options for resolving the dispute, understanding each other better, and improving communication in general. These experts are well-versed in conflict resolution and are sworn to keep all information confidential, so feel free to speak openly.
Talking with a business consultant can provide insight into strategies to resolve the dispute, including brainstorming solutions and negotiating terms. If a third party is needed to act as a mediator, a business consultant can also handle that role. This way, you can be more open to their input without worrying about offending your spouse.
If the dispute needs legal attention, seek a lawyer or mediator who can act as a neutral party between you and your partner. They can provide advice that adheres to the law while helping all parties involved reach an agreement that works for everyone.
Separate Business from Personal
For matters involving a business, it’s essential to keep personal feelings out of the equation. Try to think objectively and refrain from using personal attacks on each other — focus on the issue at hand and concentrate on potential resolutions. If needed, take a break and step away so that you can come back with a clear head and look at the dispute from a different perspective.
Don’t Bring the Argument Home
Try to keep business arguments away from home. Not only does this cause unnecessary tension in the marriage, but it can also put a damper on family activities. This can be difficult when business decisions are discussed and debated at home, but try to set aside specific times for work and focus on family when outside of those hours.
Remember Your Goals
Sometimes, arguing can make you forget why you started a business with your partner in the first place. When conflict arises, it’s important to remember your shared goals. Doing so will help you stay motivated and focused on finding a successful solution that meets both your and your spouse’s needs.
Dealing with business disputes as a married couple can be difficult, but by taking the time to understand your partner’s perspective, having patience, setting boundaries, and seeking professional help if needed, you can resolve your disagreements while preserving the relationship. With these tips, married couples can confidently manage business disagreements while meeting both partners’ needs.