Hiring a friend: pros&cons

Friends and family may bring many useful skills to your business. But it may also negatively affect your business. Hiring friends and family may allow for familial disputes and interactions to negatively affect the way your business runs. Considering the following points may help you decide whether or not hiring friends and relatives is a good course of action for you and your business.

Advantages of hiring friends and relatives:

1. You already know many of the capabilities of your relatives and close friends. This will let you assign just the right tasks to each person, based on their individual strengths and weaknesses.

2. Friends and family may already be familiar with your company and how it works. You wouldn’t need to spend as much time training new employees with the aims of your company.

3. Hiring your children can also bring special advantages. Your company will have another capable employee, while your family will be earning extra money. There may also be tax advantages to hiring your children.

4. Family members and close friends enter a business agreement with you already possessing a strong commitment to you as an individual, and, most likely, to your company. Because of this, they may be more willing to work longer hours (such as evenings or weekends) when necessary.
Disadvantages of hiring friends and relatives

1. A friend or family member may take advantage of their status, knowing that it is more difficult to fire someone who is close to you.

2. Other employees may feel jealous when you hire a friend or family member, thinking it is favoritism.

3. Personal family problems or disagreements between friends may be brought to the workplace. This may make it uncomfortable for other employees and difficult for work to get done.

4. Problems in the work place may be brought home to the family. They may also influence your relationship with your friends.

5. It may be more difficult to create a necessary change in the workplace when it might negatively affect your friend or relative that works for you.

Here are a few possible solutions to these disadvantages.

## Only hire friends or relatives that you are sure are qualified for the position. Then you won’t face firing an unqualified relative or friend.

## Hire friends or family on a 3-month trial basis. Then, if you like they way they work hire them on a permanent basis.

## Make it very clear to friends and family that they will be treated the same as any other employee. Meaning that they could be fired just the same as other employees.

## Have a written contract with each friend or relative that explains their duties and responsibilities to the company, as well as their compensation. Having a written contract in place can ease tension and make their job less personal and more professional.


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