Family relationships can be difficult to navigate - especially if you work together. Here we look at the transformation process of a family business that went through our workshop.
Family relationships can be some of the most complicated interactions we face. You likely have spent a lot of time with your family, especially growing up. This means you probably have more stories in your head about who the members of your family are and how they act.
This can leave little room for changing the dynamics, leaving interactions with your family playing out like they have your whole life. This is even more tricky when you also work with your family.
Adele Junfin is co-owner of KUNAFIN, a family-owned and operated insect control business in southern Texas that supplies solutions for farming operations. Adele runs the company alongside her husband, Frank, and their three grown children.
Anyone who has experience running a company with family knows this can come with many challenges. When unaddressed, these differences can have a major impact on the success of a business, not to mention the family's relationships outside of the office.
After hearing about MacklinConnection through a trusted colleague, Adele looked to The Macklin Method Workshop to help her family improve the communication hurdles they were facing. MacklinConnection offered a unique, independent workshop exclusive to the Junfin family to help them identify their concerns, express their personal grievances, and explore ways to strengthen their family dynamic.
After completing the 17-week workshop, Adele reflected on the experience, the profound impact the Macklin Method had on her and her family, and the life-changing lessons she’s learned.
What made you decide to take the Macklin Method workshop? Why was it important to you that your whole family participate?
I heard about MacklinConnection from a colleague who had experienced communication issues within their business. I noticed a difference in a few of their employees who I worked with often. They seemed more independent, more confident, better able to communicate and better able to help coworkers and clients. I commented on these changes to one of the higher-ups at the company who was so happy that I noticed. That’s when he told me about MacklinConnection.
It was very important to me that my entire family participate since we are so close and all play such important roles in the company. I saw what the Macklin Method was capable of and wanted it to strengthen our team ability, for all of us to grow as individuals, as well as a family and a business.
What are the greatest challenges of running a business with your family?
As a family, we’re very open with each other. Our business dynamic is developing and changing to meet the needs of growth and the impact of our world changing. My children are grown and starting families of their own. We all work together in different areas of the Kunafin operation. The hard part is treating each other like colleagues and business partners, not family. You don’t talk to your family the way you do your employees or customers. Building a professional working relationship with your family doesn’t come naturally.
As a parent I realized I wasn’t pointing out mistakes that my kids made. Instead of acknowledging it and noting the consequence it had on the business, I would take care of the issue myself. My emotions got in the way of problem-solving. The Macklin Method helped me realize this and taught me the importance of developing a working relationship that extends past the family relationship. When you’re too familiar with each other, you overstep and protect because you don’t think—you react.
Going into the workshop, what were your expectations? How is the outcome different from your initial expectations?
Initially I hoped my family would learn to develop better communication, as well as more effective ways to resolve conflict. Going into the workshop we weren’t entirely sure what to expect. We took a leap of faith.
I was so amazed with our session leaders who led us through the 17-week course. I know they were selected specifically for our family. We shared similar professional and personal experiences.
We thought MacklinConnection would tell us what to do. Instead our session leaders helped us explore being curious. The Macklin Method helps us to not be afraid of ourselves and of the emotions we have. We learned to ask more questions, which in turn helped us realize both our shared and individual goals, as well as how to accomplish them.
How has what you learned in the workshop changed your family dynamic?
We are currently discussing the dynamics of our family business—how it has changed, how it is continuing to evolve, and how we plan to deal with the changes. We are in the process of succession, which takes a great deal of thought, curiosity, and communication. Following The Macklin Method Workshop, we are working to create an environment of respect and positive thinking.
MacklinConnection helped us realize that we each bring something unique and different to the business, but we also have so much in common that we don’t share with each other. The workshop helped us take down these walls and see we’re all in this together.
What is the most valuable thing you’ve taken away from The Macklin Method?
The Macklin Method is a mind, body, soul connection if you allow it to be. It’s about connecting with people on every level and feeling safe enough to do that. I think we’ve lost some of that in society.
The Macklin Method offers a great jumpstart to new beginnings and to continue those new beginnings each and every day with one another. It has opened new perspectives and new ways of being and considering through constant curiosity. Even though the 17-week Macklin Method Workshop is over, we feel like it’s just the beginning. MacklinConnection provided a path for us to keep exploring and practicing what we’ve learned.
MacklinConnection allowed my family to see that the greatest resource we have is each other. We’re so busy being job- and goal-oriented that we miss the fact that what we need is right in front of us. In this crazy world we’re living in, we realize now that helping each other manage whatever stress is happening, whatever challenge is coming, we’re working as one to keep things moving and to stay positive. You have to constantly reboot positive energy and positive thoughts—the people in your life are the ones that help you keep that positivity. The people around me are what keeps me strong. This is why it’s so important to keep connected.
If you are struggling with knowing how to actually communicate with others, whether that is with your family or co-workers, interactions can feel transactional or even awkward. Maybe conversations feel passive aggressive. Or perhaps you are regularly experiencing shouting matches with others.
At MacklinConnection, we believe our connections are meant to add to our lives, not be stressful or difficult. This is why we offer The Macklin Method Workshop. Through our workshop, you can discover how to actually create healthy, functional relationships with those you interact with (yes, even with your family!).
If you are ready to transform yourself and your life through learning how to actually communicate and connect with others, you might be interested in joining our online community to access even more content and connect with others. In our community, you can explore articles centered around sharing vulnerable, authentic stories to help you start to create the life you want. You can also access a library of courses and build connections with others who want to change the world one relationship at a time.
If you want to bring other people along for the ride, we can create an independent workshop just for your family, team or business. By scheduling a call with us, we can work with you to figure out exactly what you need.