Differences in Workstyle in Family Business

The articles describes a case where difference of work style amongst brothers inflicted speratin in business and crises in family due to delay in decision making


8 months ago, I met two brothers from a family business in Kolkata. The brothers were working together in their family business.

The brothers were struggling with differences in their work style, risk appetite, and communication style.

The younger brother was more aggressive in business, had a lavish lifestyle, and took bigger risks for growth. His expressions were loud, and he would get furious & agitated with delays in performance.

The elder brother was calmer and believed in consistency at work. Inspired by his father, he saw a lot of potential in the primary family business. He was frugal with expenses and lifestyle.

These differences were creating a lot of complexities for them in the business. The elder brother didn't appreciate the aggressive behavior of the younger brother, and the younger brother wanted to pursue growth opportunities and take bigger risks where the elder brother was not aligned.

While discussing with their father, both of them would get into arguments, and the father would simply leave the room.

At this stage, they felt that it was important to resolve these differences, but they couldn't make a decision to prioritize and move ahead.

Three months ago, during a discussion, the younger brother became aggressive as he lost a business opportunity due to delays in decision-making and communication gaps among all three of them (father and two sons).

This was a burst out!

The elder brother decided that he couldn't work with the younger brother. "It's better we separate our affairs," he said.

This was a final decision!

In the last three months, communication has gone from bad to worse. Now both brothers are fighting every day for their share and contribution. They feel constantly disrespected by each other, and their relationship has deteriorated. They don't even wish to see each other anymore. It's difficult for the father to witness this phase in the family.

The business is incurring losses, a huge amount of money is being spent on lawyers, accountants, and advisors. The family has lost relationships, time, money, and opportunities.

The next generation is in higher school, and one of them has stopped engaging with cousins and parents.

You may delay your decisions, but the time will not.

Tell me more about this case

mistlands with gray clouds
mistlands with gray clouds