More Tips for Working with a Spouse

My husband quit his day job as a school librarian about 4 weeks ago and joined me at home.  I wrote a few tips about working with your spouse after our first week at home together.

Here are a few more tips of the trade that have kept us from murdering each other:

- COMMUNICATE – yes, I mentioned that one before, but it is HUGE and worth mentioning again.  If we didn’t communicate, our business and marriage would fail – it really is that simple.

- Assign Tasks – each of us has our own jobs now.  Mr. BFS checks and replies daily to all of the emails that are forwarded to us by our clients, which is more than 50-100 every day now.  He is also the record keeper and types in all of the info for every deal we close or transaction we make.  Lastly, he sends out the letters to anyone who we have an incomplete deal for to find out if they have been paid or not.  My job is to provide customer service to all of our clients, act as the middle man between the advertisers and our group as a whole to develop ad campaigns, to run those campaigns, and to answer any direct questions anyone sends us about the business.  We each take turns contacting past ad contacts with our most updated client lists.  In short, we each have our own assigned duties so we do not waste time looking over the same stuff or step on each other’s toes.

- Separate Work and Home - even though our day job happens in our home offices, we do stop talking about work and just hang out over the weekends and for most of our evenings.  We talk about our plans with friends and family, the vacations we would like to go on this year, whether or not we should get a puppy, and we just hang out.  We even curl up on the couch together to just veg out on tv if we don’t have plans with anyone.  Overall, we keep ourselves from just talking about work 24/7.

Those three tips above have really helped us.  We’ve only had a couple of crappy days and both of them were because of ignoring one or more of the tips above.  I’ll be sure to let you know what else we learn along the way.  :-)

Any other big tips that I missed in this post or my last one?

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5 comments to More Tips for Working with a Spouse

  • My husband is home with me during the day because he works evenings. We get on well but we aren’t “working” together. It annoys me when he says “did you finish this or that” aka something I mentioned I needed to get done. BUT I end up getting it done then so I can shut him up, LOL. Maybe we could work together, or maybe not. ;)

  • It’s great that you 2 can work together! Wouldn’t ever do that with my wife though, but it has to have some advantages. It’s also great that you’re not talking about business after hours.. there is no doubt that separating work and personal IS the more important thing!

  • My wife retired last year and she has been working with me part-time since then. I could really use the help full-time but I have decided to take it slow using outsourcing to fill the gap. The “crappy days” are becoming less frequent and after 3 months I think we are getting the hang of this. There is definitely a learning curve.

  • @Tiffany, LOL, yep, nagging sucks and nagging that actually helps sucks even more since you can’t even get too mad about it, hahaha.

    @Jon, that separation keeps us sane. :-)

    @Jim C, definitely. We discover better ways to communicate every day. Email works great for little notes but we have a sit down talk every day or two to go over anything intricate.

  • These are all really great tips and although my husband and I haven’t worked together in a business sense, we’re in the middle of putting together a joint project. What I’ve learned is that each person needs to focus on what he/she is good at and try not to step on each other’s area of expertise. Yes, it’s important to communication and accept suggestions but if I’m better at recordkeeping, then I don’t want him telling me that I “should” be doing it his way instead.

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