Not just a family business

Every business is a family business, whether it’s legally structured that way or not. The reason for this is that your family is heavily affected one way or another by the goings-on in the business.

When things are going great the family benefits positively, when business demands overwhelm, the family can suffer.

Many struggle with this conundrum.

“The reason I’m working so hard is for the long-term wellbeing of my family and yet the hard work takes me away from them.”

I grew up in a family business and now my children are also. There is no magic bullet to solve this problem but two things have helped more than anything else.

  1. A new perspective
  2. Massive amounts of communication.

The first step is to look at the situation a little from a new perspective.

Rather than just being a family business, become a business family.

This is a new way of looking at the business.

A family business is something you have. A business family is something you are.

All of the sudden everybody in the family, no matter their age, has a roll.

Everyone is a team member.

As a business family we begin to adopt business-like behaviors such as: teamwork, conducting business/family meetings, assigning tasks roles and responsibilities and most importantly developing a common mission, vision, and values.

In business you likely share your vision with the team on a regular basis. As a business family when you do the same you begin to remove some of the confusion and lack of clarity that helped to create the conundrum in the first place and you enlist the attention, excitement and participation of everyone in the family.

Keeping up with school work, helping out around the home, participating in meetings, filling in for a family member who is away on business, become roles that are held I high regard and of equally importance.

Are you a business family? What has worked for you?