The Crucial Need for Entrepreneurs to Support Their Significant Others.
Although romantic relationships and business have traditionally been thought of as two separate systems, I believe there is a strong need to be mindful of the interface between the two.
Indeed, one of the biggest challenges entrepreneurs faces while building an all-consuming business is trying to successfully manage their personal relationship and their significant others’ needs, which may be different from their own.
In my previous blog, I spoke of the important role that the entrepreneur’s romantic partners play in contributing to the success and growth of the business.
In this blog I will talk about the crucial role entrepreneurs must play for their significant others.
Simple Ways Entrepreneurs Can
Support Their Significant Others
Keep the Lines of Communication Open
Communicating with your significant other should be first on your list. It is the foundation of a trusting relationship. If your partner does not take the initiative to express his or her needs, you must step up to the plate and encourage them to talk about whatever difficult topic is on their mind.
The power dynamics that exist in the workplace are not the same at home. An entrepreneur may be used to making all the major decisions at work, but at home there needs to be an egalitarian relationship, with mutual decision-making power. Your significant other should not be managed like an investor, employee, or client. Respect for the vital role that the entrepreneur’s significant other plays in the relationship needs to be communicated at all times.
Entrepreneurs need to offer their mates feedback and advice in a direct, friendly and constructive way. Constructive criticism should be given in a safe environment and never with hurtful intent.
As much as entrepreneurs depend on their partner’s support and encouragement while building their business, they also need to also take an active interest in helping their mates pursue their interests and passions. The relationship will not grow unless each person is developing themselves as individuals.
Take Personal Responsibility
Most of us have been conditioned to blame our mates for our unhappiness. It’s almost always easier to see the faults in our partners rather than in ourselves. Blaming one’s partner for a problem is a bad habit that can feel so satisfying in the moment that it can be difficult to see the damage being done. Busy entrepreneurs must take an honest look at themselves and the power they have to contribute positively to resolving partnership conflict.
The entrepreneurial romantic relationship brings the already complicated experience of intimacy to an entirely different level of complexity and therefore it must be stronger than most. It needs better communication skills, better conflict-resolution skills, better planning skills, and a lot more resilience.
There are many things you can do to contribute positively to meet your significant other’s needs. Remember, entrepreneurship must be thought of as a team sport where both romantic partners get their needs met (not necessarily at the same time!).
Warning: At all costs, avoid saying to your romantic partner “It’s not personal, it’s only business.” Actually, how an entrepreneur interacts with their significant other is very personal!
In my next blog I would like to help you identify the attachment styles you and your romantic partner share.