• Jon Kenfield

Blog #4 - Unmet Expectations & Broken Promises.

Everyone resents feeling betrayed, or unfairly treated, by people they trust. Frustration, resentment, anger and conflict, follow.

Anything with “Family” in its name should be a haven of peace, integrity and high trust, but the reality can be different in Family Business - where promises made are often not kept, or delivery is delayed to pointlessness.

Many family businesses survive on cheap family labour and cheaper promises, making spouses of promisees go from anxious, to angry, to demanding. In-laws become “exploiters”, grandchildren become bargaining chips, family relations break down, and life gets miserable.


· Create a "Little Red Book" to reflect benefits received by family members over the years - provides a reality check on unrealistic beliefs, based on personal perceptions.

· Document and review important promises.

· Reflect significant dates in family and business plans. Discuss them at family and business meetings to keep them top of mind.

· Family employees should have detailed job descriptions and KPIs, and be independently and objectively performance assessed. Nobody is doing anybody any favours by avoiding reality.

I’m interested in your thoughts and questions.

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