Advice for Working (and supporting) Your Spouse

A few days ago, I had a conversation with JD.

For those who don't know, JD is my husband and business partner.

[He's also my anchor, coach, chef, therapist, cheerleader (Super Bowl kind, not short skirt kind), and guru…but let's not go there.]

We've worked together for over a decade and he's the best thing to happen to the business since fat free tacos.

[They exist…they do…just pretend, m'kay?]

JD remains behind-the-scenes, but he's an integral piece of everything we produce.  For those who've followed our business iterations over the years, you will have seen us ebb and flow through the ups and downs.

Through it all, we've stayed in sync.

Let's get back to that conversation we had a few days ago…

JD mentioned that he received an email from Justin (not his real name) asking the following question, “when you and Jasmine were starting off your business adventures.. what was the one way that you feel like you were able to best support your wife?”

We were eating brunch at a small diner in Chicago when I implored JD for his response.  He handed me his phone so I could read his response (which he allowed me to share here in hopes it helps more than just one person)…

First off, a big congrats to you and Katrina for starting this business venture!  Launching is definitely both an exciting and stressful time and I remember the feelings clearly.
I don't know if anyone has told you, but if not, let me be the first.  You are already winning!  The fact that you are looking for ways to support Katrina is proof you play a HUGE role in the business and will be the key to your success.
I don't want to write a dissertation that bores you to death, but let me highlight a couple things I believe have allowed Jasmine and I to operate at a high level all these years.
  • Have clear and distinct roles in what each of you do for the business.  With so many different roles in the business it's important to know who is in charge of certain things.  Seriously man, having clear roles will help you and Katrina develop your own strengths and streamline the decision making process.   It's kinda like you acknowledge if it's Katrina's role, then then she has 51% percent decision making power and you have 49% and vice versa.   Also, knowing what roles you play will help Katrina feel as though she isn't wearing all hats in the business and empower her to pass off certain projects to you.
  • Second thing I suggest, which you are already doing is encourage, encourage, encourage.  Your confidence and hope in Katrina will keep her in her zone of genius.  I can't stress how instrumental it is because it leads to a desire to come up with new BIG ideas.
  • Lastly, find ways to outsource as much as possible.  I know this sounds crazy, but it's something we've always done in every business we've ever started.  It sounds crazy because it costs a lot of money, and money is never something that is just flowing in the early stages of business.  It also feels like the risky thing to do, but from our experience it's been the best way to lessen the amount of work and stress and keeps things from bottlenecking.
I'm not sure if this is of any help, but if you have any other questions or a very specific one, please, please feel free to hit me up anytime.
Seriously, I'm only an email or phone call away.  So proud of what you guys are doing and wish you guys much success this year!!!
Rooting for you and Katrina from Cali!

(Photo by Tami Paige)