Communication: The Foundation of Family Harmony

Communication: The Foundation of Family Harmony

“It seems surprising in the age of Oprah and Springer, where people will spill the intimate details of their lives on national televisions, to find that communication is still a major impediment to harmony and balance for many business families… Whatever the reason, that 1960’s cliché, ‘a failure to communicate,’ is probably the biggest stumbling block family businesses face”. 

-Lynch, A., All in the Family Inc., 2001.

Many family businesses fail to communicate effectively or worse yet avoid communicating in order to avoid conflict; however, this creates an emotionally charged environment that can be detrimental to family harmony thereby challenging their ability to engage in the succession process.

Having a better understanding of ones personality as well as the personality of those around us such as family members, colleagues, or friends, communication can become easier and significantly more effective.

Walsh FBAS (Danielle Walsh) is an accredited Trainer with Personality Insights.

This program has 4 simple steps for success in leading, building teams, communicating and resolving conflict.

  1. Recognizing the Pattern in human behaviors
  2. Apply the pattern to your Personal perspective
  3. Use the pattern to understand other People
  4. Employ the pattern for greater success in Practical Application

Differences in personalities should be celebrated and accepted, not just tolerated. This becomes possible once individuals understand what kind of personality blend they are as well as the fact that everyone has their own blend. Personality Insights identifies these individual blends and offers recommendation on how to better communicate and interact with others.

In order to help families improve their communication and in turn complete a successful succession plan, Walsh FBAS offers the following services:

  • Analysis of Personality Assessments and related reports
  • Training and workshops for families and management teams on how to improve communication, decision-making and presentation skills with the various personality styles (typically this training can be offered in a full day)
  • One-on-one feedback with respect to an individual’s personality style


The Dominant “D” type – An outgoing, task-oriented individual will be focused on getting things done, accomplishing tasks, getting to the bottom line as quickly as possible and MAKING IT HAPPEN! (The key insight in developing a relationship with this type of person is RESPECT and RESULTS.)

The Inspiring “I” Type – An outgoing, people-oriented individual loves to interact, socialize and have fun. This person is focused on what others may think of him or her. (The key insight in developing a relationship with this type of person is ADMIRATION and RECOGNITION.)

The Supportive “S” type – A reserved, people-oriented individual will enjoy relationships, helping or supporting other people and working together as a team. (The key insight in developing a relationship with this type of person is FRIENDLINESS and SINCERE APPRECIATION.)

The Cautious “C” type – A reserved, task-oriented individual will seek value, consistency and quality information. This person focuses on being correct and accurate. (The key insight in developing a relationship with this individual is TRUST and INTEGRITY.)

In the world of family enterprise, real success is the ability to experience economic success while maintaining family harmony.  Family harmony will be more easily achieved once each member of the family understands each other’s style blend and communication preferences. Family businesses should view this as a long-term investment in both their family relationships as well as an investment in the future of their business.

“About 85 percent of the factors contributing to…success are related to the ability to work effectively with people.” –Carnegie, D., How to Win Friends & Influence People, 1936