Family Business Issues


24Oct 2010

Reflecting Reality — Sometimes Means Telling People Things They Don't Want to Hear

When working with people in my role as a coach or counselor, I often tell them that part of my role is to “reflect reality” to them — to give them objective and honest feedback on how I see their situation, and what choices they actually have (versus the choices they wish they have). Some examples include: *Helping family business

12Sep 2010

Working Together with Your Spouse — In Business & At Home

One of the issues that I deal with almost every week is the challenges associated with spouses working together. (If you do not work together in a business setting, do not “check out” yet — these issues occur for virtually all couples, because you have to “work together” at home — either doing projects, making meals, managing the finances, doing

02Sep 2010

Brief Personal Note: Two Significant Milestones

Friends, I thought I would briefly share about two significant events in my life this week. 1. My wedding anniversary. As of September 1, my lovely wife, Kathy, and I have been married 31 years. So it’s not one of those “special” years, but this year does seem special — partially, I think, because all four of our adult children

01Aug 2010

"How Will You Measure Your Life?" + Some Observations

Sometimes someone writes an article, or gives a speech, that is noteworthy. Their thoughtfulness and manner of communication is remarkable. And you really can’t add much to what they have already said. But you want to share their thoughts with those important to you. Such is the nature of the article, based on his commencement speech to the 2010 graduating

22Jul 2010

From Morse Code to 3D Movies: What Kind of Communicator Are You?

Recently, I was working with a husband and wife who also own and run a business together. One of the issues that came up was their differences in communicating, and how this creates challenges in their relationship (both personally and as co-managers). I used a “word picture” that helped illustrate the difficulties they are experiencing in communicating with one another.

08Jul 2010

Understanding the Nature of Trust

I wrote about trust in business relationships a few months ago. But the issue of trust in relationships keeps coming up again and again in the work I do. Really, it is the lack of trust that continues to reappear. The issue is so foundational to healthy relationships, I feel compelled to write on the topic again – and explain

27May 2010

Key Issues for Business Owners to Address Prior to Selling Their Business

As many of you know, I do a fair amount of consulting with family owned businesses. One of the common issues I help business owners and their families work through is the sale of their business (either preparing to do so, or dealing with the results afterward). Recently, a friend who meets with a number of business owners starting to

10Apr 2010

A Fascinating Book on Personal Responsibility, Character and Conscience

Some books are just incredibly thought-provoking. I was recently referred to The Language of Conscience by two good friends whom I highly respect. So I ordered it and have been reading it (it is one of those books you do not finish in a couple of hours). And I am intrigued. I am not sure I fully understand all of

22Mar 2010

Similarities and Differences Across the World

I just returned from a week in Istanbul, Turkey, speaking at a conference, meeting with families, and doing some sightseeing. And I was struck by the similarities of issues that exist half away around the world, within cultures that have incredible differences. First, I need to let you know that Istanbul is a beautiful, beautiful city with incredible history, architecture,

09Feb 2010

Trust and Business Relationships — Some Common Pitfalls

Recently, in a variety of settings I am observing the issue of trust impacting business relationships. Obviously, trust is at the foundation for business transactions — that the vendor will provide the goods or services purchased, that the goods or services will be at the quality level described initially, and that the customer will pay for the goods or services

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