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Motivate, Activate and Execute – FBI Network Meeting 30th April 2018

The below was presented by Jon Kenfield, Solutionist Group and FBI Founder, at the April 2018 Family Business Institutes Networking Event.

Our 2018 theme:  Behaviour-based strategies to support logical solutions explores the forces at play in business families that prevent obviously “correct and appropriate” advice from being implemented, frequently at a dramatic cost to the family, and to the frustration of its adviser(s).

Jon has worked with an enormous number of business families over the years.  He’s equally scarred from achieving stunning successes and frustrating failures in his attempts to guide families through conflicts, confusions, best practice implementation and challenging succession processes.

Tonight’s session discussed how advisers can help families to move from good intentions to effective actions in the pursuit of agreed family goals.

Key takeaways:

  1. Family Business Advisers have a broader remit than conventional Professionals and Consultants. They’re often asked to act in a cross-functional capacity. If that’s not comfortable, they should engage other trustworthy advisers, with the skills the client requires.  Regrettably, many advisers still work with a silo mentality.
  2. To guide family businesses to good outcomes (goals), we need to clarify our purpose, process and language to develop, explain and implement great Family Plans.
  3. Start with the purpose, process and language of goal setting (“G’SOTS”):

Goal = a broad, desired, priority outcome  >  a Destination.

Strategy = the approach taken to achieve a Goal  >  a Plan.

Objective = smaller, specific, strategy outcomes that measure progress towards Goals  > Milestones.

Tactic =  things actually done to achieve Strategic Objectives >  Tools & Techniques.

Skills = capacity and commitment to implement G’SOTs! 

  1. Motivation makes us want to do something.

Motivate = create desire to do something to achieve an objective.  It’s conceptual, and anticipates eventual performance.

Extrinsic Motivation is externally generated.  It’s often contractual (formal or otherwise) and involves considerations of obligation, risk & reward.

Intrinsic Motivation is self-generated.  It’s always personal, referring to individual drivers, such as desire for success / fear of failure; ethics; honour and meaning.

  1. Many models seek to explain the causes of motivation, summarised as: who you are + what you are + how you feel + where you are + what you need and want +  where you want to go.  This will motivate you to do something, BUT that may not be enough to generate the actions
  2. Activation is the process of making something ready for action – at the beginning.
  3. Execution is the actual doing, per a plan or directive. “Execute or EXECUTE” is a useful mantra, linked to the “3 strikes and you’re out” rule.  There must be consequences and compensations if required actions aren’t completed.  Many families fail to insist on execution, and fail to EXECUTE, as a consequence for failure.  This may be disastrous.

FBI Network meetings are held on the last Monday of the month, from February to November.  Guests are welcome.  Attendees can connect remotely, using Zoom.

For more information about Jon:                       


Written by Family Business Institute

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