Teamwork: Working with Your Spouse or Significant Other

Being an entrepreneur comes with a lot of responsibility. Whether it is dealing with clients, balancing budgets or preparing the calendar for the month ahead, at the end of each workday it is up to you to make everything happen. This can be daunting for many people when they first venture out into the working world as an independent worker. When I first started as a REALTOR, I loved the flexibility it allowed me and the ability to work my own hours. What I came to find though as I continued to grow as a Realtor and as a businesswoman was that while I worked well by myself, I worked even better with a partner.

Running a business alone can take a lot out of someone and one of the ways I have been most successful at what I do is by working with my “team”. My husband Jay and I have been working together since almost the beginning. We work side by side as business partners who both push one another to be our best selves while continuing to grow as individuals in every aspect of our lives. When we first started off, we made the decision to build our business life together and that is how we continue to run smoothly today.

My mother and father have worked together in their real estate and management business since 1983 and are still working together today.  Event though my mom had a full time job with the State of Colorado for 33 years she still helped my dad with his business.  Once my mom retired from the State she came on full time with my dad to continue running their business full time together.  Before Jay and I went our on our own we helped my mother and father with their business and we still help them a little today.

Not everyone can work with their spouse/significant other and we have had our challenges over the years. But what we both have realized is that we both understand one another’s strengths and weaknesses, which help us, work together in a way that makes our business bond stronger. If there is an area I lack in, Jay pulls more weight there and vice-versa. Together we are a force to be reckoned with and what better way to have multiple streams of income than to work together and grow businesses together?

Recently, Fast Company wrote an article about working with your significant others and some of the pros for doing so which I have shared below:


Increase Stress Resistance - Research has shown that work-linked couples are generally more resilient in the face of stress. The main reason is that they tend to perceive that they have their partner’s support, which helps them cope with difficult moments at work. In addition, partners are more likely to be more supportive about each other’s work problems when they work together. Thus working with your spouse can help you navigate difficult job situations.

Lower Chance Of Burnout - Meta-analytic studies have shown that people are less likely to burn out in their careers if they experience support from their work colleagues. In line, burnout rates are generally lower in work-linked couples than the average employee population. A further reason explaining this finding is that couples who work together need to invest fewer psychological resources on integrating their work and family lives, which enables them to use more resources in both areas of life.

Higher Engagement At Work - Given that work-linked couples have more integrated work and family roles—their behavior, attitudes and values don’t change much between work and family contexts—they are more likely to be engaged at work. Conversely, when employees experience a psychological distance between the role they play at work and the role they play in personal contexts, such as at home, they are at risk of experiencing disengagement, and even alienation, at work. People strive to maintain a coherent self-view, and that is always easier when they behave in consistent ways across different settings.

Importantly, many of the above benefits still hold when couples don’t share a common workspace or organization. Indeed, even sharing an occupation or profession can reduce stress and burnout while increasing engagement levels.” (Chamarro-Premuzic, 2015)

When you think it is time to take the step into working independently, consider working with your spouse/significant other to build a strong team. If you ever have any questions about what it is like for Jay and I feel free to ask, always happy to share how we continue to find success as business partners.