Case Study

Family business owner
Become MD

A family business owner approached me for help when he had been made MD after his mother and father had retired.

Previously he had worked in the Sales division but was now tasked with managing a team of 28, making financial decisions and driving strategic direction. He had been on 2 leadership courses and was still feeling overwhelmed with responsibility. He noticed his new role was impacting on his home life and time with family.  We had an exploratory meeting online which I followed up with a proposal for 3 coaching sessions which focussed on managing demands of the new role and prioritising time with his family.  I have personal experience in family business and was able to empathise with many of the challenges he was presented with. 

The first coaching session sets out our ‘contractual agreement’ outlining our mutual responsibilities, I explain that I use questioning techniques that will challenge him and help him access different ways of viewing his position.  We began by refining his objectives and the client immediately felt more in control being able to ‘see more clearly’. The session enabled the client to realise that he was attempting to prioritise controlling things he couldn’t actually control and forgetting to focus on things within his control to change.  

The second session examined his working week, identifying ‘essentials’ and techniques to unlock time he thought he didn’t have.  This time was then allocated to his new found priority list and at the top was teaching his daughter to ride a horse. During our sessions, the client understood family dynamics in the context of his business and set a long term plan to tackle what he felt was an old fashioned culture, and make small but impactful changes alongside day to day operations. 

Our third session created a road map for the client that included (i) challenging ‘crooked’ thinking and achieving the ‘growth mind set’.  (ii) Identifying how working smarter can lead to greater results than work longer hours. Planning for a work-life balance through the ability to blend the two in a way that leads to greater fulfilment.  The client felt the session gave him the tool kit he needed to build a career for himself that was no longer overwhelming and integrated family life, rather than seeing it as something working harder to eventually allow him to do later.

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