Do Entrepreneurs Have a Higher Risk of Divorce? There are no scientific studies that indicate that entrepreneurs have a higher risk of divorce. However, according to Inc Magazine, launching a business can shatter the foundation of a marriage due to increased financial pressures and the business can often feel like the ‘other lover’, drawing the attention of the spouse away from their marriage. Moreover, troubled marriages can put even a thriving business at risk. Headlines are full of influential, well-known CEOs facing marital failure.
The global rate of divorce has increased over the years with over 50% of marriages in the US ending in divorce. Though most Christians will agree with the biblical stance found in Malachi 2:16 stating God hates divorce, there seems to be no major difference between Christian and non-Christian divorce rates.
“According to various studies, the 4 most common causes of divorce are lack of commitment, infidelity or extramarital affairs, too much conflict and arguing, and lack of physical intimacy. The least common reasons are lack of shared interests and incompatibility between partners.” divorce.com
Does business success reduce the risk of divorce?
In reality, business success is not an automatic deterrent to divorce. Whether your mate is actively involved in the business with you or not, business does create a risk to the marriage and success can actually increase the risk, but it can be avoided. The risks include; financial pressures, the business seeming like the other lover, increased demands on the spouse’s time, increased temptations, and potentially increased conflict due to the couples trying to figure out how to work together. Business can also increase the division between the spouses especially if the other spouse is not actively involved in the business. Since marriage is a protected institution before God, it should take precedence over the business.
You do not have to choose between your marriage and your business; you can thrive in both no matter what training your business is in!
Here are seven keys to minimizing the risk of divorce in business:
- Make sure that the business fits in God’s plan for your family, not just one of the spouse
- See the business as a family business, not his or hers, even if one of the spouses is not actively involved.
- Have clear rules of engagement between the business and family
- Have routine meetings to update each other and pray about the business
- Have a clear role for the non-involved spouse even if it is a passive role
- Identify key activities that the non-involved spouse can be involved in without disrupting the business operation
- Engage the non-involved spouse in some coaching sessions, update each other, and agree on key decisions that will significantly impact the family.
Engaging your spouse in the business or working with your spouse in the business day to day is not easy. However, believe me when I say that it is worth every obstacle that must be overcome to realize it because the alternative is risky. Even if it does not lead to divorce, it makes for a less-than-fulfilled marriage.
When we are coaching our clients, we recommend having a combined coaching session with the spouses at least once a year if not twice a year. Throughout the years, we have found that this makes a significant difference as it made the spouse feel valued and informed. It ultimately leads them to really take ownership of the business.
You do not have to walk this journey alone! Join us on February 8th, 2023 (Wednesday) at our annual Nehemiah Couples in Business Global Forum as Jason and Tori Benham, authors of Beauty in Battle, share how to stop fighting against each other in a personal battle and instead, fight alongside one another in spiritual wars which yield in marital and business success. You will hear from other Biblical Entrepreneurship couples who are also successfully waging spiritual war together and winning. Get a preview of some of their story in this recent Nehemiah Entrepreneurship Community Podcast with Patrice and Gina Tsague.
For more ongoing support and encouragement for Couples in Business, Gina and I lead a Couples In Business Life Group that meets once a month and host an annual Couples in Business Retreat. Send us an email at CIB@nehemiahproject.org if you wish to join us.
Interested to know more about upcoming events and educational opportunities offered by the Nehemiah Entrepreneurship Community? Click HERE!