Restaurant makeover shows are very popular across reality TV channels. Of course, it helps when the featured restaurant is a disaster, otherwise there wouldn’t be anything to makeover. It is amazing how clueless some of these owners are even when it comes to simple thinks like keeping food storage areas clean. You would think that they would at least clean up knowing a camera crew was about to show up. Then there is the issue of bad food. How hard is it to cook with fresh ingredients? As we always learn, not that hard.

Of course, the real drama on these shows is when the business is run by families and it tears them apart. There are a lot of good reasons to start a business with your family. After all, they’re your family. What can go wrong? Obviously, quite a lot. If you’re thinking about starting a business with your family, then you might want to consider the following tips on how to make it run smoother. Even if you’re already in a family business quagmire, there is always time to reboot.

Tip #1: Draw the Line Between Family and Business

You know how you should never bring your work home with you? That is especially true with a family run business. It’s easy to fall into the trap of talking about the business around the clock. However, the boundary should be the front door. Once you cross over, it is family time. All the business stuff can be resolved/dealt with during business hours. Drawing those boundary lines will make the family and business less combative.

Tip #2: Set Up Weekly Meetings

You’re going to have squabbles. That is true in any business, family or not. The best way to nip those brewing problems in the bud is to get them out in the open. A dedicated weekly meeting to address staff concerns and new business should become the norm. Just make sure the meetings are productive and allow everyone to have a say.

Tip #3: Delegate, Delegate, Delegate

The ruin of many businesses is micromanagement from above. If you feel the need to constantly look over the shoulders of your staff, then you won’t be getting your work done and you might have hired the wrong staff. In the family business, not everyone will have the same skill sets. Play to their strengths and once you assign a task let that person run with the task. Absolutely follow up and check on the progress but give them the chance to flourish on their own. That will come back as a benefit many times over.

Tip #4: Treat Your Business Like a Business

Could you fire your brother? Can you dock your mom’s pay? You might have to as part of maintaining your business. You’ll experience many rewards by having the support of your family in your business. No one will fight harder for it to succeed. However, there could be those circumstances when things aren’t working out and you have to do what is best for the business. Once a family member accepts employment, then they should expect to be treated like every other employee. This is something that often goes unsaid. It should be said!

Have you been involved in a family business?