Building Trust and Consensus in the Family

Date: Oct 27 2020

Mindy Kalinowski Earley, CMP, CFBA, Chief Learning Officer

The element of trust is perhaps one of the most crucial pieces within the family and the family office. Here Jeff Strese, Adjunct Faculty at SMU and Head of Leadership Curriculum, and Mindy Earley, Chief Learning Officer at FOX address the critical value of trust and provide us with important tips to achieve greater trust in the family and the family enterprise.

An easy definition trust is this – trust is the currency for leaders to get things done through people.

Strese asks, why is it worth our effort to assess the barometers of trust? Because the inside culture must match the outside culture, and what the family believes is true about the organization When an organization has that kind of trust, it has a strong voice.

Earley and Strese give us 13 Trust Building Behaviors, including this sampling below:

  • Talk straight
  • Demonstrate respect
  • Show loyalty
  • Deliver results
  • Clarify expectations

Early and Strese present a new and simple way to look at problem solving, using a system called Lateral Thinking. Think of it as coming down a funnel – wide at first with lots of ideas and thoughts, and then gradually thinning out to a resolution.

A very simple way of looking at group behavior is to employ the Nominal Process. In this way, we hear from everyone in the group. Then use Lateral Thinking to address the pros and cons of major themes and make a decision.

Mindy Earley is an education and family office professional who believes that empowerment and knowledge are key to living a purpose-driven and self-actualized life. She is inspired by helping people learn, grow and discover the way that they will make personal and productive contributions, using their strengths and talents.

Areas of Expertise: Family Learning

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