Never Mind… It’s A Dad Thing

Years ago when our son was in high school, he spent a large part of every week night working on math problems, which were not exactly his favorite thing to do. One night he came downstairs to the living room where Margaret was reading.

“Hey Mom, when you’re solving these equations, how do you know what the…

Long pause.

“Mom? Never mind. I think this is a Dad question.”

Early on, our kids learned that while both of us would be equally engaged in their schooling, Mom and Dad had different strengths. Dad was the math and science guy; Mom was the go-to for English and Social Studies. They instinctively knew to go to the appropriate expert. And that varied depending on the day and their questions.

It’s not so different for Copreneurs. Your business is your baby. You’re raising it together. And you each offer it a little something different, because you have different strengths. Here are some guidelines that will help you best take advantage of them.

Know Your Strengths. You probably have an intuitive feel for your own strengths and your partner’s. But have you expressed to each other what they are? Have you had a conversation about what each of your gifts mean to the business? If not, spend some time comparing notes on how your strengths should play out in the business.

Don’t Poach. Once you’ve agreed on each other’s strengths and where they’ll be applied, give each other autonomy to make decisions in your own domain. Inserting yourself into an area that you’ve agreed will belong to your partner sends the message you don’t trust them to do what’s best.

Be Responsible. The flip side to trusting your partner is to be worthy of trust. Within your agreed upon domain, take the responsibility for decision making and action.

Don’t Get Jealous. When a customer or employee goes to your partner with an issue in their domain, it’s easy to feel left out or diminished. Take a moment to remember that you’ve agreed to divide up responsibilities.

Keep Each Other In the Loop. Everything you decide and do impacts your partner. Even though you two have agreed to divide responsibilities according to your strengths, it doesn’t mean you should keep each other in the dark.

This Week:  What are your strengths? How could you use them to get better business results and feel more motivated at the same time? Are there any assignments you need to swap?

The whole is stronger when each partner plays to their strengths.

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