Some of the best practices from the work world can also improve marriages. Not all, but some. Here are three examples . . .
- Commit and communicate– Employees, vendors, investors, and customers want to follow a leader who exhibits that singular all-in commitment to his business or organization. They want to hear it . . . not have to assume it. Similarly, wives need to know we’re committed. All-in for the long haul. Unconditionally. It can’t be assumed, implied, parsed, or asterisked. We have to tell them, and more than once.
- Burn the ships– The leader who spreads his time and talent to multiple endeavors won’t garner as much respect and commitment from his people. Why would I choose to be more committed to something than its leader? At home, we will never have the wife of our dreams without exclusive commitment to her and her alone. All your energy needs to be focused on understanding and loving that one person.
- Create an environment of acceptance– People are drawn to environments of acceptance and repelled by environments of rejection. A leader who creates a work environment of acceptance, positivity, and love will gain the heartfelt commitment of employees. Do the same thing at home. Remove all criticism of your wife . . . every single evidence of rejection. In that environment, a wife can flourish, and will, over time, move in the direction of her husband.
On the other side, some work practices never work out well at home. Here’s three of those . . .
- Setting goals– Because we’re under authority at work, we often set goals for ourselves and other people . . . performance expectations with timeframes. Don’t try this at home! Setting goals together is one thing. Assigning goals for your mate doesn’t usually work out well.
- Specialization of roles– At work, we divide duties and responsibilities based on skill and experience. I have a job, you have a job, he has a job . . . clear lines of responsibility. Go home and start assigning your wife roles and responsibilities . . . tell her what you’re going to do and what she’s going to do. You might end up in the emergency room!
- Performance counseling– Jobs usually have some sort of regular performance review, counseling, or feedback. Those higher in authority look at our work and tell us how we measure up. I don’t even need to say what might happen if you approach your wife this way.
A few things that work at work can help us at home, but in most cases, we diminish our marriages and homes when we forget where we are and act at home as we do at work.
Challenge: There’s a bunch of things people do at work without thinking. If you’re carrying some of these home with you, make a conscious effort to switch gears when you get home tonight.