Running a family business just like any other business has its own risks and challenges. It is surely challenging but it doesn’t mean you cannot do it successfully. There are people out there who proved that they can run family business just fine. Before diving into family business, it is highly advised to understand all the risks and challenges so you can anticipate and prevent potential problems. Of course, there are the inevitable but at least you will know how to deal with them if you know what you are getting into.
Challenges in running business with family members
Running a business with your family members can be both calming and nerve-wrecking. The good side is that you don’t have to waste your time with background checking or familiarizing. You already know who you are going to work with. The bad side is that conflicts that happen within working environment can be persistent and dragged into personal life. Here are the most common challenges in running a business with family members:
The first challenge is to set boundary between business and personal matter. Since you are getting used to with the presence of your family members, it is easier for you to feel too comfortable. However, business is business and you need to treat it like one if you want to become successful. Separating business and personal matter will be the hardest challenge especially in the beginning and if it is the first time experience for you or your family members to join forces in running a business.
The next challenge is related to leadership and responsibility share. Since you already knew your family members like the back of your hand, you don’t hesitate to deliver responsibilities. However, it is not something you should do based on personal attachment. You need to delegate responsibility to each member of your family based on their skill. Another challenge is when you have to lead older family members. They are used to treat you like a baby so you have more pressure to prove them that you can become a good, effective leader.
Another challenge in running a business with family is to think out of the box. You and your family members have the same upbringing and already got adapted into family tradition. It makes you think similarly in so many things. This can be good because you can bond faster. However, it can be a trouble for when you need to find or accept new ideas or concept. Meanwhile, innovation is crucial element for the success of business.
Lack of objective perspective is also challenging. You are working with family members who you love and love you. It is common to feel biased. However, giving bias opinion in business is not constructive. You should work without involving too much personal attachment. It doesn’t mean you have to act cold. What you need to do give each other open and honest opinion to everything related to work. Thus, you will know if there is something to fix or improve.