The Pros and Cons to Hiring Family Members For Your Business

Many entrepreneurs choose to hire family members once they begin to grow their staff, and there are several reasons why. For one, it's easier to hire individuals you already know. In addition, entrepreneurs have the advantage of establishing a previous relationship with family members they choose to bring into their beading business.

It may seem like a no-brainer to hire family members as extra help when starting out as an entrepreneur. However, there are cons that balance out the pros of employing relatives. Understanding the benefits, as well as the disadvantages, can help you get a better idea of what to expect if you choose to go this route.

  • Keeping it in the family

    WAHM.com (''Work at Home Moms'') reports that one of the biggest pros to hiring family members is the opportunity to get around the red tape that would come if you hired a professional. Many entrepreneurs choose to bring in relatives "under the table" when starting out but even though you're not hiring a professional, you'll still need to abide by certain legal restrictions.

    Hiring relatives can come in handy if you have younger family members who are looking for low-wage jobs to start out their careers. This can help you turn a profit in the initial stages of launching your business. Sticking to family also gives you the opportunity to hire staff members who can telecommute--because you already have a trusting relationship with these individuals, you can allow them to work from home and benefit your beading company in a different matter.
  • The learning curve

    WomenOnBusiness.com states that the learning curve is typically briefer when it comes to family members who have been recruited to work for a business. Because you're already familiar with these individuals, you have the advantage of knowing their strengths and weaknesses. In the end, this can help you when instructing them on how to fulfill their roles at your company.
  • Trust and understanding

    Another obvious benefit to hiring relatives is already having a relationship based on trust and an understanding of each other's quirks. Often, entrepreneurs spend months becoming acquainted and trusting new, unfamiliar employees that they hire. You can avoid this altogether by working with relatives. However, keep in mind that it's important to establish boundaries between your work life and matters at home.
  • Expecting power struggles

    Just because you are already familiar with each other doesn't mean that everything is going to run smoothly when it comes to business matters. In fact, the workplace may become prone to tension as you spend more time around one another, handling day-to-day operations.

    Because your employees will be comfortable with you, they will also feel more entitled to voicing their opinions. This might mean more flare-ups and arguments which can create an unnecessary amount of stress in the environment.

    BCBusiness Magazine recommends hiring an outside source (not a relative) who can act as a governor for your beading company as a whole. Think of it as a bringing in a human resources advocate who can serve as a mediator. By doing so, you can help maintain relationships inside and outside of the workplace.
  • Communicating job descriptions

    Even though they are family members you trust, it's important to make sure that your relatives understand the purpose of working at your company. They are employees and should be treated as such--each position comes with a certain amount of responsibility.

    For this reason, you might want to consider writing a job description for your hires prior to bringing them in. Make sure they understand everything they have to do on both a short-term and long-term basis. This can help you avoid any questions that may pop up in the future about what should be done as an employee.
  • Questions to ask yourself prior to hiring

    Once you understand the pros and cons to hiring relatives, Inc.com states that there are a few things you should ask yourself before moving forward with the process. Bringing in family members will result in a slew of changes to both your work and personal lives.

    Some questions you might want to ask yourself before hiring a relative is whether or not he or she is truly the right person for the job. If not, do you have an exit strategy? It's also a good idea to evaluate whether you can spend a large amount of time with your relative--some people need personal space. If you think it might be difficult to balance your work and personal lives, you might want to consider other options.

    In the end, weighing the pros and cons thoroughly can help you make sure you're doing the best for your beading company, as well as for your family members.


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