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Enriching Your Live Archive
Entrepreneurial Couples Archive

Enriching Your Life!

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Archive - Entrepreneurial Couples Archive

Conflicts, Employees, Compensation

Friday, November 02, 2001


ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE:

  • Avoiding misunderstandings with your spouse
  • Promoting a good relationship with your employees
  • Fair compensation for women in family firms

AVOIDING MISUNDERSTANDINGS WITH YOUR SPOUSE


Text Box: Men and women problem solve differently. Because men are very goal oriented problems become something they need to conquer. Women on the other hand are process oriented. This means they approach problems as opportunities to explore options. While men are competitive and want to prove themselves by solving the problem on their own, women strive to include others in the process of problem solving to come up with a group decision.

To avoid misunderstandings both men and women need to speak the other person’s language. Men need to recognize that the wife is not always criticizing when she is asking to discuss the status of a problem. Men need to hear her questions as an attempt to understand the problem and a way to ask what she can do to help. On the other hand, women need to recognize that the husband will not understand you want to help if you just ask questions. She needs to actually offer concrete help, such as “Let me make those phone calls, while you do the measuring.”

Read my latest “Families In Business” column to learn more about how to avoid miscommunication with your spouse. http://www.executivecouples.com/meet/columns/index.html.

PROMOTING A GOOD RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR EMPLOYEES


The following ideas will help you create a positive environment for your employees:

  • MAKE YOUR EXPECTATIONS CLEAR. People need to know what is expected from them. Present a basic job description that is informative, yet not all encompassing, because you want to encourage some flexibility. Spend time with new employees talking about what is important to you and your business.
  • ENCOURAGE INITIATIVE AND SELF-DISCIPLINE. When it’s shown praise the individual, offer support and try to implement the idea. Tell the person how much you appreciate their contribution. Reward the person in ways that are important to them as an individual.
  • TREAT THE PEOPLE YOU EMPLOY AS ADULTS. Think about how adults want to be treated. They want to be able to provide input about any decision that involves them. They want to be treated with respect. Work contributes to social needs; most people want to feel as if they are contributing to something greater than themselves. The best work places promote individual and group success and raise the self-esteem of staff members.
  • MAKE ALL POLICIES AND PROCEDURES AVAILABLE TO ALL EMPLOYEES. Solicit input from employees before implementing new policies. Discuss new policies in staff or team meetings. Allow time for questions and discussion. Then, enforce policies as consistently as possible.
  • MAKE YOUR WORK PLACE A SAFE PLACE FOR PEOPLE TO TRY OUT NEW IDEAS. Make every effort to ensure people are not "punished" when an idea fails to work as intended. If you can, provide a budget for staff to spend on new ways of working.
  • SPEND TIME MEETING WITH STAFF MEMBERS REGULARLY. In addition to staff meetings, you may want to walk through your employee’s work area regularly.
  • ENCOURAGE OPEN COMMUNICATION. Communicate all the information that is available about your business, your customers, your profitability, and your mission and vision. Share your business’ overall goals. The more people know, the more they can act independently to help you reach them.

These suggestions were found on the entrepreneur.about.com website by management consultant, Susan Healthfield.

FAIR COMPENSATION FOR WOMEN IN FAMILY FIRMS


This is the name of the chapter I wrote for latest edition of THE FAMILY BUSINESS COMPENSATION HANDBOOK. In this chapter I address some of the reasons why women are paid less then their male family members in family firms. I also talk about how to correct this problem so that a woman’s contribution to the business is truly valued.

If you would like to learn more about this handbook or to order your own copy go to - http://www.familybusinessmagazine.com/handbooks/compcont.html.

Thank you for subscribing to my newsletter. For more information on how entrepreneurial couples can make it work at work and at home go to my web site www.entrepreneurialcouples.com. You’ll find exercises, a library of family business articles, on-line consultation and much more. To contact my office call (360) 256-0448 or (503) 222-6678 or email info@kmarshack.com.