For some families, going into the family business is a no-brainer. It's what grandpa did, dad followed suit, and now it's time for the next generation to follow in the footsteps paved before them.
Joining the family business has its attributes whether or not you're gung-ho on the idea. If you're an eager beaver geared up to partner with your relatives in business or you're not quite sure the family business is the right decision for your future, these perks will reaffirm or convince you that joining the family business is a smart choice. Get ready to hum, "We Are Family" on your way to work every day!
If you can't trust your family, who can you trust? In scenarios where you need someone to give you the no-nonsense low-down on a delicate situation or you need to run an idea past someone who's a straight-shooter, family members are the folks who you can count on.
As per American Express, "Trust is essential in all business, but especially so in a business where trade secrets are make-or-break. There's a very high level of trust among family members and they can talk to each other very freely and openly."
Trust is also of value when it comes to money matters. You can be sure you're being paid fairly and on par with what other family members earned in the role you've taken on. And performance will be truthfully reviewed and discussed with the goal to keep you going strong for yourself and the good of the business.
There's something to be said about carrying on a family tradition. Thanksgiving gatherings at Aunt Suzy's and yearly trips to the lake at the state park are lovely and something to remember fondly, but becoming a vital part of a generations' old family business takes tradition to a greater and more powerful level.
Value Walk notes, "By working in the family business and taking it over one day, you have a unique bond with your relatives. It can deepen both your relationships and your roots in your community. You can have a real stake in the company's future, both emotionally and financially. The pride you have in working for a firm founded by your family can be motivating, and, when you have the opportunity to improve that business and make decisions that move it safely into the future, it can be very gratifying."
This feeling of tradition will make every business decision you make all the more important because your family is counting on your strength and solid commitment. It may feel like extra pressure, but it's really a deep-rooted drive to do your very best every day.
Unlike working for a large corporation or some other company which you may not have deep ties to, working for a family business is one of the greatest acts of loyalty you can make, as is the commitment you'll have for the business itself.
"Family-owned businesses are theoretically ideal because family members form a grounded and loyal foundation for the company and because family members will often exhibit more dedication to their common goals. Having a certain level of intimacy among the owners of a business can help bring about familiarity with the company and having family members around provides a built-in support system that should ensure teamwork and solidarity," says Chron Small Business.
Knowing those you work with are willing to go above and beyond to sacrifice for the sake of the family will be motivational and contagious. The commitment is not only to the business, but to the members of the family as well. This type of devotion helps make businesses succeed both monetarily and by achieving a positive reputation among customers, clients, and the community.
Working for a family business can be advantageous when it comes to give and take in the workplace. If you need to work from home, show up a little later than usual, or swap tasks with a peer, families tend to give the OK more readily than other companies might. This can vastly improve your work/life balance as well as your overall workplace satisfaction.
According to Chron Small Business, "Families tend to be more lenient and forgiving when it comes to work schedules, work-related decisions and judgments, and even mistakes." And Vistage adds, "You won't hear, 'Sorry, but that's not in my job description' in a family business. Family members are willing to wear several different hats and to take on tasks outside of their formal jobs in order to ensure the success of the company."
Flexibility also results in a more relaxed work environment leading to less stress and more time for creative thinking and collaboration. What else could be more valuable towards taking a business to new heights?
You can be part of the family business with pride and productivity. Your fierce commitment and solidarity with your co-workers will reassure you that working for the family business is a smart and satisfying choice.
What would get you into the office? Free lunch? A gym membership? Permission to hang out with your dog? Some employers are trying just that.
The rising trend of pet-friendly offices is part of the effort to incentivize employees to come back to work in person. Many companies completely embraced the remote-friendly convenience of WFH. Digital nomad culture emerged and “second cities” arose when people exited New York, San Francisco, and LA, and headed to Denver, Austin, Charlotte, Nashville, and Raleigh.
But now, employees and employers have a choice to make. The question now is: to return or not to return to the office? This is no longer about forcing employees to commute. Post The Great Resignation, employees feel more empowered to leave in-person positions and seek out remote jobs. So if offices want people to return, they’ve got to do a ton to entice their employees.
Some huge companies with giant operating budgets are not worried. With major perks like shiny facilities and full-service food bars, they feel comfortable requiring in-office work days — even if it’s for a hybrid week. But the solution might be simpler: pet-friendly workplaces.
The Allure of Pet-Friendly Offices
According to the Washington Post, pet-friendly workplaces are becoming a common solution to improve employee morale and appease the rising number of pandemic pet owners. “As offices start reopening and thousands of workers are being called back for the first time in two years, some companies are allowing employees to bring their pets. About 23 million American households adopted a pet during the pandemic, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Many workers say they find pet-friendly environments an important perk for their new furry family members. A recent survey conducted by Banfield Pet Hospital, owned by Mars Inc., showed that 57 percent of the 1,500 pet owners polled said they would be happiest returning to a pet-friendly workplace. Half of the 500 top executives surveyed said they are planning to allow pets at the office. Tech companies including Google, Amazon, and Uber plan to continue to allow dogs at their offices, even with their flexible office policies.”
With so many people adopting and fostering since the pandemic, becoming a pet parent is a trend. And to welcome these new additions into people’s lives, it makes sense for some workplaces to welcome them into the office.
After spending unlimited amounts of time at home, many pets grew greatly attached to their “parents” — and pet-parents feel the same about their pets. Rather than keeping them locked in the house while their caretakers head off to work, this is a mutually beneficial solution to the current separation anxiety faced by pets.
Pets have also been shown to boost happiness in pet owners. According to heart.org, “Studies show that dogs reduce stress, anxiety, and depression; ease loneliness; encourage exercise and improve your overall health. For example, people with dogs tend to have lower blood pressure and are less likely to develop heart disease. Just playing with a dog has been shown to raise levels of the feel-good brain chemicals oxytocin and dopamine, creating positive feelings and bonding for both the person and their pet.” Most likely, this might have a similar effect on people who bond with animals at work that don’t even belong to them, lending an overall mood boost to the office.
The controversy behind pet-friendly workplaces
However, not everyone is as enthusiastic about the prospect. Some would rather keep the office separate from their personal lives. Some are allergic to pets. And some people simply don’t like animals.
Offices considering pet-friendly policies are weighing the pros and cons to keep everyone happy. According to the Washington Post, clear guidelines and communication can increase the chances of success.
“Before making the jump, pet experts say that leaders should first understand whether their employees have interest in, or strong feelings against, having a pet-friendly office. Doing an anonymous survey may allow employees to freely share thoughts on the matter.”
Overall, the key to a policy like this is flexibility. “Be ready to adjust: Above all, pet-friendly offices should be ready to listen and adjust their policies as they go. What works for one office may not work for another, but experts say proper planning can lessen much of the burden.”
Ensure your office is actually suited to the pets you want to welcome. “A well-developed pet-friendly office should be both safe and welcoming to pets. That means companies should consider blocking off areas that could be dangerous to pets as well as making sure pets have access to clean water, food, and places to rest.”
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When people think of gifting, they tend to think of the winter holiday season.
Suddenly, every store offers gift wrapping and the internet is a cornucopia of gift guides. I get super into it, making lists — like Santa himself — of who’s getting gifts r and who’s getting nuffin because they scorned me last time around. Black Friday and the winter sale season have trained me well - I’m now in the groove of saving in advance, prepping my budget, and keeping an eye out for major sales.
But with all that anticipation in winter, there’s almost nothing of the sort in spring. And, after going through my spending last year, I realized why I felt like all my money was going down the drain from April to June: this is a holiday-filled season too!
At first, I blamed it on hot-girl summer — and maybe in part, this was the case. Buying new clothes to refresh my stale pandemic wardrobe, and admittedly getting carried away with my post-vax excitement for going/doing/seeing everything all took hits at my budget.
In the future, I’ll make sure to prep more for summer because every year brings new exciting things to spend money on – especially outside.. Plus, as travel becomes more and more seamless with fewer restrictions, having a “summer buffer” will let me dip into my savings for trips that may come, not into my credit card balance.
I told myself I’d make those financial decisions for the summer, but it wasn’t just the summer. The whole spring was a financial pit and I didn’t completely understand why. After all, isn’t spring for cleaning, decluttering, and even making money by ditching things that aren’t serving you? Why then, did I keep watching my accounts get drained?
The answer is gifts. From Easter in April, Mother’s Day in May, Father’s Day in June, and more, spring is a parade of little holidays that sneak up on you with their obligatory gifting. And it doesn’t even end there for me – I have a ton of friends’ birthdays during these months! With Tauruses being known for their materialism (or maybe that’s just the ones I know), I always splurge on their presents. This leaves me with an empty checking account … kind of by surprise.
In the winter, I prep and save and budget. In the spring, I scramble and overspend. But not this year. This year, I’m very aware that it’s gifting season and I am planning accordingly.
Adele, a Taurus, courtside in all designer. See what I mean? Does she LOOK easy to impress? No, this is why I'm broke
How to Save For Short Term Goals Using Sinking Funds
According to personal finance blogs, one of the keys to saving enough for seasons like this is starting early. Establishing what is known as “sinking funds” is the most efficient way to consistently save for short-term goals. From everything to impending vacations to holiday gifts, sinking funds let you start planning early and reinforce good spending habits. No longer will you be surprised by recurring bills or how much a vacation really costs – the money will be saved, waiting for you to enjoy.
TIME defines sinking funds as a special kind of savings account. “A sinking fund functions similar to a savings account, but with a purpose and approach all its own,” says TIME. “A sinking fund is money you set aside for a specific upcoming expense. Unlike a general savings account or emergency fund, a sinking fund has a clear purpose attached to it — whether it’s to save for a vacation, down payment on a home, or a big-ticket splurge. The financial educator Haley Sacks has a sinking account just for astrologists. If you have a big expense coming up, you might consider creating a sinking fund to take the stress out of saving for it.”
I’m taking notes — and even considering starting my own astrology sinking fund — and I already made one for “Spring Surprises.” For any savings goal, keeping a separate savings account apart from your checking account is the first step to making sure you’re actually contributing to it. Seeing that number get closer to your goal is great motivation. For sinking funds, I make many different savings accounts, all with specific names according to the goal. I even add the goal amount and the month it’s “due” to the account name so I know when each is coming up. This gets me excited to see the fruits of my labor and keep contributing consistently. It also makes it easier to budget for my sinking funds each month with a dedicated amount.
Sinking funds are great cash flow tools that keep you in control of your purchases. According to Clever Girl Finance, a popular personal finance blog for women: “When you don't have a sinking fund, you may be forced to make these purchases through another source of funds, i.e., your emergency fund, your savings account, or your credit card. A sinking fund helps you to plan for large purchases. It also helps you stay on track with your savings goals, keeps your debt low, and allows you to make purchases freely without feeling the pinch.”
This added security lets you spend money on gifts guilt-free. Once it’s in your sinking fund, you can spend it for its allocated purpose without having to worry about other expenses or going into debt. You’ve planned for this. And now you can be generous without the unexpected stress of draining your checking or even your own spending money.
What to Buy This Spring
With all the little holidays that accumulate during the season, it can be easy to be surprised by them. Sinking funds take care of the financials, but an extra step of planning never hurts. Figuring out what you actually want to buy in advance lets you track prices and take advantage of sales, rather than buying whatever marked-up mother’s day bouquet you come across last minute.
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