Only a mother and daughter can understand the relationship they have with each other. They may go from fighting to laughing in only a matter of minutes, but their unconditional love for one another will always remain. Although this relationship may seem complex and often tricky to navigate, each bond is unique in it’s own way.
In today’s society, mothers and daughters in business together is a growing trend. This may seem like a recipe for disaster, but if certain guidelines are met during the process, working as team can have many advantages. It takes a special mother-daughter pair to work effectively and efficiently together on a project.
Mother Janice Elenbaas and her daughter, Meghan, are business partners at Lucky Dog Cuisine Inc. Dr. Janice is a real rags to riches story, and failure was never an option for her. Dr. Janice decided to start up Lucky Dog Cuisine, an all-natural, all-American, human grade cooked meal for dogs. Times were difficult during the beginning stages; the mortgage was not being paid, money is tight, and their dog was in poor health.
Meghan was 28 years old when she decided to leave her $80k job to help run the Lucky Dog Canada in Toronto. Today, after 4 years - $450,000 GROSS! Now, Lucky Dog is a 2,500 square foot facility where people are cooking food for dogs. Learn more about Lucky Dog Cuisine Inc. at: http://www.luckydogcuisine.com/
“Of course there are always going to be challenges when working with family, but I remind myself that there are issues in every work setting,” expresses Meghan, “For me, I enjoy working with my mom because I’m comfortable with her. I can express my feelings, thoughts and suggestions more freely and I know she’s listening to everything I have to say. She is my business partner, but she is my mother before it all. This genuine, down to earth bond will be very difficult to find when working along side anyone else.”
Here are some basic ingredients for success for mother-daughter business partners:
Boundaries: Establishing clear boundaries and roles are key. Both mother and daughter should distribute job responsibilities according to each other’s interests and strengths. Living together for all of those years will make it simple to figure out who’s better for certain tasks. Precise job descriptions are the backbone of strong family businesses and will help make working with each other bearable and profitable.
Trust & Respect: It’s essential to use the special mother-daughter bond to your advantage. There should be a level of trust established before the business begins. This ability to trust, respect and rely on each other makes a good foundation for any business partnership. It may be difficult to find this anywhere else in the world because these qualities already exist between a mother and daughter. With this being said, it’s important to think of each other as colleagues rather than family during business hours. Treat each other with the same respect you would any other co-worker.
Problems & Solutions: Disagreements are normal in a business partnership, but when problems arise in a mother-daughter business, they have more at stake because of their relationship. Conflict in business can be healthy, but have a plan on how to resolve disputes. Small disagreements will evolve into much bigger problems and will have a negative impact on the company. Every mother and daughter have their ways of getting under each other’s skin, but just like in any conflict, a plan for a solution and the ability to communicate is key.
Free Time: Don’t let the business take over your relationship. Regularly schedule downtime once a week to live the mother-daughter relationship in its natural form. It may be a difficult task to achieve, but it’s important not to base your entire relationship around work. Enjoy each other on a weekly basis, without worrying about the company.
Mother and daughter teams can effectively work together but it takes communication, patience, and understanding. It’s crucial to establish clear lines between the personal relationship and the business. With mutual trust and respect, maintaining a profitable business is easy. The bond between a mother and daughter is special and should be celebrated and honored this Mother’s Day and everyday of the year. Working as business partners may be challenging at times, but the rewards are truly exceptional.
“My company is named Lucky Dog but I sure do consider myself one Lucky Mom! Having my daughter work side by side with me is exciting and I’m so grateful for everyday we share together.” Dr. Janice states, “There are times we feel overworked, tired and we may get snippy with each other; but we bounce back from those feelings pretty quickly. It’s fun to brainstorm ideas and build revenue together. We trust each other one hundred percent and because of that, we make a fabulous team!”
About Lucky Dog Cuisine: Lucky Dog Cuisine is real food for dogs. We take the mystery out of feeding your best friend. There are no ingredients in our food that you cannot pronounce or have to look up in a chemistry text. No fancy degree is needed to read our labels. We use real food and nothing else. Our food for dogs is so good that you could eat it too. We feel that if you cannot pronounce something, you probably should not be eating it. All of our meals are made in real kitchens, not processing plants. We actually use pots and pans and bowls just like you do to cook your own dinner. Our bowls are just a lot bigger. Learn more at http://www.luckydogcuisine.com/