About twenty years ago, my then-husband and I shared a passion for business and we worked together closely for several years. I had left “his” company and started working for a non-profit organization that helped people start their own business. It was a tremendous experience in my life. Along with coaching the new excited business owners, Keith and I also delivered a workshop called “Family In Business”.

For years we had almost successfully maintained a great working relationship. But working together comes with a price if there are either partners involved or personality types (two A types can go head to head and be just a bit competitive).

The business Keith had started did have partners. I was with them at the onset and helped with marketing and finance. It was a wonderful opportunity to grow and learn and have flexibility when my children were born. I had the chance with my first child to have him at my side throughout our three-year start-up in Reno.

When we returned to Canada, I did have childcare, but again, if something was needed at home, I was able to leave to address it.

After ten years, the partners were unsettled with the husband/wife team, and I was let go.

This did have an impact on my life, my relationship, and my personal psyche.

I did manage to pull out of the rut with the new venture of helping others, and I asked Keith to be a part of it. I enjoyed working with him. Business was the one solid thing that kept us together.

There is something to sharing successes, dreams, goals, new ideas. It’s exciting. Sharing a family in the interim adds a new wonder to the relationship. But somewhere along the way, we stopped being intimate. I think we forgot that there was another element to running everything in your life (except your children) as a business.

Ironically, our marriage failed after 15 years. We just couldn’t get past the lack of attention we placed on each other. We were better together in business than in a relationship.

I guess I would say that it is important not to overlook the value of family when immersed in business and the future. The now is very important.

Family in Business is wonderful – as long as it is kept in balance. Balance. Now there is the challenge! One Keith and I never really addressed properly in our workshop. Something today I would highly stress. And balance IS a challenge.

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