What Does It Mean To Work On Your Business?

At Sprout Ag we believe that one of the biggest drivers of business success is communication between family members and business partners. To work on your business is to work on communication.

Relationship issues with business partners and family members stifle progress and the economic costs are significant. It slows down a business, causes serious stress and anxiety that has a broader impact, and at worst splits a business through either divorce/emotional conversations that are hard to unwind. This is often something that is a talking point every single night in a family. This negative energy should be going into strategies and ideas on growing the business as opposed to negative relationships. To work on your business is to work on relationships.

Best Practice (We all know this):

  1. Listen more and get others perspective.
  2. Body Language, Pitch and Tone 80 percent of communication.
  3. Change your reaction as you can’t change others.
  4. Don’t just try one communication strategy and give up.
  5. Respect ( return of messages/ families can be brutally honest, emotions can lead to concentrating on the wrong issues).

Businesses have predominately Human Relationship Issues.

You can’t just “Do” the work all the time. You need to work on your Business and a large component of that is with your partners and family members.

Most of the relationship issues are a misalignment between personal goals and Business Goals or not aligning them. Combining money, multiple families and business isn’t easy! In fact, it is one of the hardest things that you can do. That is why it’s important to work on your business. This is your biggest project and not just what you produce and sell.

Why every business is a family business;

  • When you are stressed at work you are stressed at home.
  • When there are cash issues at work there are cash issues at home.
  • When you are communicating poorly at work you are communicating poorly at home.
  • A lot of advice says you need to separate business and the family, but our view is the opposite. You need to combine the two otherwise you are driving a large wedge between them and this is where the friction starts.

When a private or family business is aligned (everyone agrees on the direction of the business, understands long term goals, understands three year goals down to the next quarters’ goals) and everyone has a clear role and accountability supported by regular meetings. These type of businesses are the best as everyone puts additional effort into making them work, unlike large corporates and publicly listed companies.

Have you reviewed the roles and responsibilities in the last twelve months?

Do you know your partners 10 year plus personal goals and what is really driving them?

When family business are working well everyone understands the following;

  • Everyone understands the long term goals and short term goals and they are well communicated.
  • Roles and responsibilities are clear.
  • There are regular meetings face to face to discuss all aspects of the business and these are set aside.
  • There is clarity around what business success looks like.
  • Honest and robust constructive conversations are encouraged.

Good Communication Techniques

  • Please email us direct for a list of the best communication techniques.
  • Try different styles of communication as each generations and individual is different- Don’t give up!

Why is this important to get right

  • Misaligned and poor relationships in business are the biggest cause of a breakdown in a business.
  • Significant impact on the family- there is no costs on this.
  • As an independent business 70 percent of your profits go back to local communities.