I plan to attend this workshop on February 16th sponsored by the MidAtlantic Chapter of the Family Firm Institute:


Here is the material being covered:

Given the influence of the family dynamics on family enterprises, it is important as professionals to understand what helps create effective and positive change in families. The field of family therapy offers an overwhelming variety of approaches and perspectives on how to create this change. This workshop will provide family business professionals with brief overview of the different schools of thought on family dynamics, as well as practical applications derived from each. The Ackerman Institute for the Family has been training family experts across various disciplines for 50 years and has developed strategies for taking the best from various theoretical frameworks in the social sciences resulting in what is now called the “Ackerman Relational Approach.”  The ARA approach strengthens and clarifies relationships between couples and family members to empower them to envision and create desired lives with the active support of those close to them. Join Lois Braverman, early FFI member and President of the Ackerman Institute to learn more about:

  • Real differences in schools of thought regarding helping families
  • What methods Ackerman has found work best and how these methods are learned
  • What to know when referring couples or families to experts for in-depth help with decision-making
  • What engagement differences and collaboration models exist across the range of family therapists, consultants and coaches

I personally believe it is most practical to understand the psychological, ethical and relationship foundation of the family system but then focus on creating a safe environment in which change does not lead to negative conflict.  Change=Conflict=Change is a formula that means if the business is going to progress change must take place and conflict managed positively.  No change is no conflict but also no progress.  To best do this we must first understand the principles and values of the family business, as well as the relationships and personalities and move on to collecting the facts, defining common interests, understanding rational sources of differences of opinion and then build the plan and structures to move the business forward.