Unresolved Conflict with Family Businesses

Thank you to Strategic Solutions Consulting LLC for participating in Career Options “Make it Happen in 2017-2018” resource guide for area companies!

Please see below for their response to one of the questions we addressed:

What are some of the main areas that family business have unresolved conflict?

Resistance to change Especially in family businesses, we see a lot of resistance to change. A lot of times, the owner or leader has been successful because of the way they have always done things, but fail to make necessary changes to stay competitive long-term.

Generational differences There are many generational differences that can cause conflict in a family business, such as: technology, management style, working style, values, preferred method(s) of communication), etc.

Failure to discuss difficult things – Not having uncomfortable but necessary conversations can result in unresolved conflict. Families want to maintain harmony, and as a result, often avoid talking about things that need to be discussed. This impacts the business, as things cannot be planned for appropriately, and there can be also be a lack of accountability and other problems.

Unclear expectations In family businesses, roles may not be clearly defined, and therefore, people may not know what is expected of them. Making clear roles and responsibilities for each individual can greatly reduce conflict caused by unclear expectations

Unrealistic expectations There are often unrealistic expectations in family businesses, especially between generations, which leads to conflict. The owner/founder of the business usually has incredible work ethic and has worked around the clock to establish a successful business. In many cases, the business has seen significant growth, and therefore needs to be a more team-based leadership style for the next generation to handle a more complex business.

For more information regarding this topic, please contact:

Strategic Solutions Consulting LLC

Anjali Seefeldt

2 Systems Drive

Appleton, WI 54914

Office: 920.730.2705

Cell: 920.475.9496


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