Starting a business on your own is a very difficult task to achieve and attempting to run a business with one or more family members can be an even bigger challenge. Managing a successful business with a sibling relies on focusing on the big picture, which are making decisions that will benefit the company. If the focus relies too heavily on the concerns and wellbeing of the siblings instead of what’s best for the company, trouble may arise.
One example of an extremely successful sibling partnership is the brother-sister duo, Jeffrey Soffer and Jackie Soffer. Together, Jeffrey and Jackie Soffer co-founded Turnberry Associates, a luxury real estate firm that establishes and manages both residential real estate and commercial real estate. Turnberry Associates develops properties in locations like Las Vegas, Washington DC and South Florida. Some of Jeffrey and Jackie’s work include The Residences Hotel located at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and Aventura Mall in Florida, which is made up of nearly 3 million square feet. Turnberry Associates is also responsible for renovating the biggest hotel in South Florida, the Fontainebleau Hotel and Resort. It is no doubt that siblings Jeffrey and Jackie Soffer put their heads together and worked hard. They became very successful at real estate.
So what does it take for sibling partnerships to succeed?
There needs to be exceptional communication. You can’t take for granted that just because you’re family that you can read each other’s minds. The key is to communicate as if you are not related. Another key component in becoming successful is to utilize each partner’s strengths. Find out what each partner is good at and dish out assignments accordingly. Putting all expectations, tasks and future plans in writing instead of just a verbal agreement will help success because siblings will be held responsible in writing. Another sure way to a successful company is to make important decisions together. Consult with your sibling first and listen to their opinion before deciding.
Walt and Roy Disney were very successful in founding Walt Disney World. The Wright brothers are famous for clicking together and going airborne. Brother and sister, Jeffrey and Jackie Soffer became very successful running a company. Though having a sibling partnership may involve lots of work and compromise, the benefits from it will be outstanding.