Saturday, February 26, 2011

When You Can't Buy Out Your Partner

I'm sure every couple who runs a business together knows the frustration: not being able to fire, or more appropriately, buy out, the other.  This frustration usually stems from differences that should compliment each other but some days just drive each of you to madness.  In our house, I'm the one who is more paperwork-oriented while Matt is the one who is more mechanical.  That's not to say I haven't put together my share of shelving or that he hasn't done a great job of answering emails.  But when it comes to accounting, its all about the paperwork.

Matt will be the first to admit he is unorganized when it comes to receipts.  My solution?  A basket on his bedside table.  I thought he could empty his pockets into the basket before throwing his jeans onto the floor.  While this method produced a few more receipts, our animals apparantly did not eat in September, October, or November.  A couple of goats also seem to magically have appeared on the farm.  I try to regularly ask for receipts, especially when I know he has bought something.  He usually swears up and down the receipts are in his truck.  Or his coat.  Or maybe he forgot to ask for one.  Ugh.  I don't know what method of collecting receipts can be more simple than the basket. 

Another area of frustration for me is the log book.  I have a composition book in which I write every day how much milk we get, how many eggs we collect from which chickens, what was bred and what was born.  Since I do most of the daily chores, the log book is not usually a problem.  However, for one week when I was out of town then sick with the flu, we seem to have not collected any milk or eggs.  I explained to my business partener-husband that it is not the "Sarah Log" but the "ICAcres Log".  He said he understood.  But one day last week he did the chores because I got home late due to a tornado near the school I work at and, again, we seem to have not had any milk or eggs. 

I am not saying the lack of attention to record-keeping makes Matt a bad person and I am sure it is equally frustrating to him when I have to ask him to build something "small and easy" like more rabbit nest boxes.  It's just one of those things.  Maybe someone out there, somewhere, has all the answers of working perfectly and harmoniously with your partner, be it in business or in marriage. Until then, if you have any methods of saving receipts that have worked for you, please make sure to leave a comment!     

1 comment:

  1. Well hey ! your're a farm girl after my own heart. I too am the paper person and he is the jobs person even though we do switch back and forth. I keep a LARGE orange envelope on the kitchen table that say "daily receipts" Hubbie does put his in there WHEN he remembers to ask for one. After 18 years of farming he is getting 'better". We also have a farm mtg every morning where we review priorities (funny...they are rarely the same ) and I again ask "got any more receipts ?" and/or ask him to explain them so I can allocate them to the right Quicken accounts. I put clipboards up with locker dates, beef orders, etc...he takes then down and leaves them everywhere. And yet, he will stop what he is doing immediately if I need something moved or carried or fixed. Yes there are many days I would love to fire him, but I would never let anyone else "hire" him for sure. Hang in there. I feel your pain