Relationships in business are the key to the whole operation, not to mention they are what can make your life awesome or drive you insane! The quality of our interactions dictate the quality of our life.
Bad relationships with your employees, friends and family lead to all sorts of nasty stuff like weak communication, frustration, resentment, demotivation and untimely death. Good relationships lead to unicorns, rainbows, skipping in the rain and the like- so lets jump right in and talk relationships!!
This may seem obvious but good/ fulfilling/ effective relationships are not all that common in the real world. So the million dollar question remains:
“How do you create good relationships in your home and work?”
Let’s start with what not to do. That intense, unyielding (annoying?) drive that fuels most small business owners is often the very reason they can’t find balance or happiness in their lives. Entrepreneurs end up becoming slaves to their businesses and their relationships with their employees and loved ones suffer.
CAUTION: This can lead to puppy kicking, baby slapping and general not coolness.
Time is your only non-renewable resource! If you learn to delegate and trust your employees this can free you up to work ON your business and not IN it as the great Michael Gerber says. You might even find yourself enjoying life now and again. So how do I achieve this mythical utopia? So glad you asked…
Set your employees up for success with clearly understood goals and accountability. It is so easy (tempting) to either not give them enough responsibility or to give them too much without sufficient training. Use checklists and metrics so they know where they stand and you know whether or not they are on track. Clearly line out positive and negative outcomes and consequences for both meeting, exceeding and failing to meet the clear guidelines you have set out. This takes work up front, will save many headaches and heartaches.
Core Values help employees to understand your the rules you want them to play by to achieve company goals. Employees tuned in with your Core Values will feel more like they are a part of something and tend to invest in your business more deeply which breeds a higher caliber of worker.
Let’s take relationships out of the workplace and move them home for a minute- what about my spouse? If your spouse doesn’t work with you, it is imperative that you keep your spouse encouraged and engaged. Owning a business is tough and it’s likely they don’t are not always going to share your passion and vision- at least not to the level that you do. Having a strong foundation of what and how the business will integrate into your personal life combined with periodic conversations around expectations can save a lifetime of strife. Make sure to intentionally set up boundaries and limits, and give them a break from your insanity now and again so you don’t turn up on a milk carton one day.
If you are one of the brazen bold and likely mentally ill who choose to work with your spouse (as I do), a tip of the hat to you!! Make sure that you have clear roles. This will save a lot of unnecessary duplication, miscommunication, slap fights, and the like.
Let me leave you with this- you can’t control the other person, you can only control your response. When you are able to control yourself, you will be able to effectively lead others and enjoy healthy relationships. Feel free to leave some genius relationship stories of your own in the comment section below…