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Should you employ your family member? Absolutely. But, how?

Ted Blackwater |
If you own a company or are in a high position and have a chance to employ your family member, should you do it? Many will say "no," but things are more complicated than that. We will show you how to make them simple and good for both the family and the company.

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When talking about employing family members, the first sentence you will most probably hear will be "But, that's nepotism!" That's understandable because there are many examples out there of employing family members without appropriate knowledge and even assigning them on very important position in the company.

You probably heard a conversation like this: "I don't know what to do with the kid. I might give him some job, in marketing or something, you know, maybe he'll learn something." If you didn't, trust us, such talks can be hear everywhere and this leads to one of the biggest problem a company owner can fall into.

It is natural to wish to employ your family member. We all are thinking about our family first and just then about everybody else. But, when it comes to job, you must stop and think for a moment or you will do more harm than good.

When it comes to employing your family member, you can to that in three way, two of them are wrong and one is right.

First, you can employ regardless of experience and knowledge. The only good thing is that your new employee will get a salary. Bad things: he will not contribute to company's goals, will have no will to learn and improve, other workers will have to do his job, and everybody will start to ask themselves why they are working so hard to get and retain the job when someone can get it with not efforts at all.

Second, you can employ your family member and ask him to work more and harder than other team member to prove he deserved that place. That's also wrong. All employees should have the same starting position and same environment and forcing someone close to you to work harder and longer is discrimination. There are many people who'd say "I worked very hard to prove my father didn't employ me just like that," and this is bad situation.

It is bad because you are discriminating a worker based on family relations, that can lead to frustration, and leaves the space for other employees to give an enormous amount of work to that person because "he has to prove himself". This is a clean case of discrimination nobody should go through.

Third, you can employ a family member following the same procedure as with any other employee and that's the only right way. The same job interview, the same goal at work, the same methods of rewarding and punishment, the same working conditions. This is the only way to keep the company successful and other employees happy, but this is also the only way to raise a successful and mentally stable younger member of your family.

Now, one of the big question is how to fire somebody close to you? The answer is surprisingly simple: just like anybody else. When you are at home, you are family, when you are at work, you are employees in the company. Period. If somebody deserved to be fired, let's be it, fire him. Everybody learns on own mistake and so will your son, daughter, cousin or whoever. That will also teach your younger that you are a responsible person, caring about your company, and maybe that loss of job will show him some other life values.

So, instead of thinking long and wide about that cousin in need of job and what to say and what to do and how to do it... just make it simple: treat him as any other worker and you will make good things for all parties involved.


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