Life Partner, Business Partner

Originally published Jul 22, 2015

A few weeks ago, I went to Business Chicks breakfast to hear Lorna Jane Clarkson talk about her life, her business and her journey from young entrepreneur to uber successful global business-woman. I was very inspired by her, not only because she’s happy, healthy, hard-working and gracious, but also because her husband has been with her from the beginning and continues now as company CEO.

Coming together quote from Henry Ford

Starting Anchor & Bliss with my husband has been an interesting and sometimes challenging experience. It’s hard for us to switch off from the business – we try to get some downtime and take ourselves for a walk or out for a beer (don’t believe us? Check out our Instagram feed!), but almost inevitably spend the whole time talking, planning or dreaming about the business. We wake up in the morning to a house full of oil moisturiser, t-shirts, orders waiting to ship and experiments for new products, and it sometimes feels like more clutter than it’s worth (our second bedroom has become Anchor & Bliss storage). We go to chill out with some Netflix, and remember that the website needs updating, we need to post a blog, or that there are emails to write … Sometimes it feels like so much of our lives are intertwined with Anchor & Bliss that it’s hard to catch a break from it.

But it other ways, working on the business together has been enlightening and exciting. I have seen focus and dedication in Andy that I hadn’t seen before – ‘work Andy’. I’ve seen his creativity come out as he’s designed the website, realised what a good writer he is, been impressed by his kitchen science skills. And I’m in awe of his work ethic and dedication. I can honestly say that the business would not be the same without him and his devotion to our happiness and (hopefully) our success.

One of the reasons we started Anchor & Bliss was because we wanted to build a better lifefor ourselves – we wanted to take a chance on what we could achieve as a team, and actively strive for a life that truly makes us happy. Anchor & Bliss is not the kind of business that will turn over hundreds of millions of dollars, but if we do it right it could grow to provide a great lifestyle where we both get to do fulfilling work that we’re honestly passionate about. What could be better than that?

It’s hard doing something like this with your partner – we’re honing our respective abilities to separate professional and personal feelings – but for me, and hopefully for Andy, the benefits outweigh the difficulties. We were already best friends and spouses before we started this caper, and now we are business partners as well and I know for sure that there’s no-one else I’d rather do this with.

What do you think? Could you ever work with your partner (or family member, or friend for that matter)? We’d love to hear from you!

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