Paradox and Polarity – Conflict in Family Business

Far from the hoped-for flourishing of family relationships, with members happily working together, family businesses are all too often a place of tension and conflict. This can be personalised, centred on individuals with judgement, blame, frustration and anger.

This article explores the environmental sources of conflict, where paradoxes and polarities arise constantly and naturally, driving these tensions. We suggest a different way of framing conflict: as environmental rather than personal, which gives family business leaders clues for new approaches.