I recently started working with the CEO of a small family business. His wife, six children and granddaughter worked in the business.
On the outside, it looked like a successful business enterprise. On the inside, there was chaos, dissension, fear and mutual unhappiness. The CEO didn’t know what to do about the family’s business problems. But he knew the conflict posed a risk to the continued success of the business and also threatened his family.
I am sure anyone who has been around family businesses can share their own war stories, from family members with management titles based on nepotism rather than merit to family members who no longer speak to each other after the breakup of the family business.
If we start with the assumption that all family businesses are dysfunctional, how might the CEO of a family business mitigate the dysfunctionality?
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