Unique Workshop Offers Ways to Prevent Destructive Conflicts for Parents, Siblings and Spouses Who are in Business Together

Your marketing manager is not doing the job. He works hard but is an ineffective staff manager, somewhat disorganized, late in meeting deadlines and the staff is complaining. But the biggest problem is that he’s your brother-in-law.

This is just one potentially destructive scenario that will be explored in the second Leadership and Transitions in Family Business Workshop series, sponsored by the Center for Entrepreneurial and Family Enterprises. "Strategies for Preventing Conflict in Family Business" will be conducted from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. April 24 in Ammons Hall on the Colorado State campus.

Led by Anne McCarthy, a management professor in the College of Business, and Carl T. Spina, co-founder and president of Family Business Consultants, the workshop is designed specifically to address areas of conflict for siblings, spouses and parents who are in a family business together.

Conflict within the family business has several causes: salary policies, role definition, leadership roles and individual recognition are just a few. "Conflict is going to occur–it can’t be avoided," McCarthy said. "But it doesn’t have to be destructive. If it can be managed proactively, it can actually be constructive." But enormous problems can occur when the problem isn’t addressed or resolved. Both families and businesses can be destroyed.

Family business is critically important to the economy of Colorado. According to a recent news report, there are 800 family businesses with annual revenues of $5 million or more between Cheyenne and north Denver.

The Center for Entrepreneurial and Family Enterprises in the College of Business at Colorado State is committed to providing important outreach opportunities to individuals, business and industry. The workshops are designed to serve the needs of family-owned businesses by:

* Presenting non-biased topics unique to family businesses,

* Offering an arena for participants to discuss issues they share,

* Providing a menu of family business educational resources,

* Creating an environment conducive to networking for family business owners to share, and

* Engaging participants in the development of future topics and formats.

For more information, contact Sarah Behunek at (970) 491-1184.