Finding the Right Job-Sharing Partner

Finding the Right Job-Sharing Partner

Finding the perfect work partner is a lot like looking for a mate. Not just anyone will do; you need someone with whom you work well, communicate easily, and negotiate fairly without hard feelings. You also need to have complementary skill sets and scheduling needs. Here’s how to find that person:

  • Choose a person whose personality and style complement your own. You don’t need identical work styles; in fact, sometimes it’s best if your strengths are her weaknesses and vice-versa.
  • Get to know your potential partner before entering into a job-sharing agreement. The time to discover she can’t be trusted with organizational details is before you’re sharing a job with her.
  • Negotiate the arrangement before approaching your manager. You want to present a well thought-out plan, not a half-baked idea. Your presentation serves as the first indication of the quality of work you two will do jointly.
  • Make sure you can communicate easily with a potential partner. You should both feel comfortable discussing anything, including concerns and conflict.
  • Discuss how you will handle any problems beforehand. For instance, are you flexible enough to swap days? What if travel is required? Know these answers before you approach your manager.
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