J.J. and Beverly Jerman were dating when they decided to venture into working together.
“I was working as a nurse in a GI Lab at the time and developed an allergy to cleaning chemicals so I had to find a different job,” says Beverly. “J.J. suggested that I come work with him, which scared me to death. We had been dating 2 ½ years at that point and I sure didn’t want to mess anything up. That was in 2010.”
J.J. and Beverly married in 2011. For the past seven years, they have run Office Furniture Warehouse and have learned many valuable lessons about working together as a couple.
“One thing we would for sure tell couples who are thinking about working together is it’s important to have defined roles and to discover each other’s strengths,” Beverly says.
Both J.J. and Beverly agree they didn’t have clearly defined roles when they started this venture.
“We weren’t clear about the lanes either of us should be running in within the organization,” says J.J.. “I knew she was a great people person. I am definitely more focused on the business side of things and not as in tune with how people are thinking or feeling. After a few months of trying to figure things out, we decided Beverly would make a great ambassador for the company working in human relations and I would focus on tasks, goals and strategy. Knowing our lanes helped tremendously.”
The Jermans also learned that if they didn’t determine their priorities and create some boundaries, the business could consume them. If you are considering starting a business as a couple, the Jermans suggest the following:
The Jermans are among approximately 2 million couples who choose to work together. The lessons they have learned through the years have helped them grow a very successful business.
“While the business is important, the most important thing is the relationship we have,” Beverly says. “We have learned when to ask for help and have surrounded ourselves with people who believe in us. We are strong, and we enjoy what we have built together.”