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Family business ownership has enjoyed a long and successful history in the United States. That success, however, comes with unique struggles, often arising from the complex blend of two systems: the family and the business.

People who run or work in family businesses know the challenges of navigating the complicated human relationships involved in these two systems. Our Family Business Program shares with family-owned businesses the knowledge and expertise we have developed in more than four decades of studying and caring for all types of family relationships.

Family Business Program Services

Our Family Business Program provides expert consultation, education and research services. We focus on the problems that arise at the complex intersection of the family's relationships and its business interests. These services include:

  • Succession Planning: identifies and then removes constraints that inhibit the effective development and implementation of succession plans.
  • Leadership Development: includes leadership and career assessments to assist companies in identifying high-potential leaders and in crafting effective leadership development plans. Also offers assessment and coaching to assist executives in sharpening their skills.
  • Conflict and Dispute Resolution: develops skills for constructive communication, conflict resolution and anger management in the workplace, and also resolves family business impasses through the application of proven meditation techniques.
  • Counseling: offers expert help to distressed families, relationships and individuals.
  • Assistance and Education: for executives and employees experiencing an impairment, managing career and life transitions, confronting crisis situations or looking to find meaning in their work.
  • Education: presentations on the relational aspects of the family business, through which we help family business leaders understand and apply "family systems" theory to both family and business relationships.
  • Research: focuses on the growth and support of healthy family businesses. Our research on constraints in family business succession planning led to articles published in Family Process. We have also presented on family business issues at a number of national and international conferences.

Contact Information:

For more information on the Family Business Program, please contact Douglas Breunlin, MSSA, LMFT, LCSW at