when running a family business. This is not an easy thing to do. There are
differences in work ethics and personalities, along with different strengths
and weaknesses. When problems arise at work, it is not only going to affect the
business, but also the family arrangement. If you are part of a family
business, you may want to consider working with a psychologist who specializes
in family businesses.
A family business psychologist works to understand the “soft side” of families
who work together. They help the family members to recognize interpersonal
problems that will affect the business and the family. I’ve been working as a
family business psychologist for a number of years and have seen firsthand the
benefits of this approach.
I had the pleasure of working with Camille
Eber who is a second generation owner of Roth & Miller Autobody Inc. in
Portland. Camille recently wrote an article entitled, “Working
with family member is a blessing, challenge” about her personal
struggles working with family. She had difficulty getting along with her
nephew, William, who is currently the operations manager. They decided to make
an appointment with me to help improve their relationship.
Here is what she said about their therapy sessions, “Dr. Marshack,
author of “Entrepreneurial
Couples: Making it Work at Work and at Home,” helped us set individual
and business goals and define our responsibilities within the business more
carefully, which is a key to success in a family business. The personality
testing we worked through was particularly eye-opening. Once my nephew and I
acknowledged we’re nearly polar opposites, it helped us realize better how we
could use that to benefit the business. We were able to return to work on the
business as a team rather than working against each other.” Click
here to read the rest of the article.
If you are experiencing challenges within your family business, I highly
recommend making an appointment with a family business psychologist. Like
Camille’s experience, you will be able to better understand yourself and one
another which will help make your business and your family a success.