Let’s face it — moms are the glue that hold the family, and the family business together in so many cases.
I’ve also found many moms to be a bit shy or humble about their impact on the family.
One of the goals of a good coaching process is to teach everyone in the family how to express themselves and take ownership of their power and impact in the family. One of the ways we do that is to ask good questions and request people to give their answers.
Sure, some are a bit uncomfortable at first, but you’ll be amazed at how their answers open the doors to more fruitful dialogue and great insights for the family.
So, this year I want to challenge you to set the right backdrop and ask Mom some or all of these questions.
The right backdrop might sound like… “Mom, you know I’m always trying to become the best version of myself, and help us to become the best version of our family. It would really help me if I could ask you some questions… I’d love to hear your thoughts… it will help all of us.”
- What are you most proud of or excited about for our family?
- What, if anything, are you concerned or worried about?
- What’s the one thing you’d love to see the family do, or talk about to work on that’s worrying you?
- What would you say are our family’s guiding values… the things that are most important for us to not lose track of?
- If you could say anything you wanted to say to the family, without worry or hurting our feelings, what would you say?
- Is there a message you’d like to convey to the youngsters in the family… one thing to stay focused on?
- If you could take one thing back, or do one thing differently, what would it be?
- When you’re gone, how do you want to be remembered? What would you want to have as your legacy?
- What’s your thought on the #METOO movement and what’s happening right now with women and the public discussions we’re having? What’s your perspective about that?
- If you could want one thing for the young women in our family, what would you want for them?
- Is there something you’d like to tell me that I haven’t asked about?
Just sit back and listen! Go where the energy is. Some questions might illicit little or no thoughts and others might open up a huge new dialogue with Mom.
I see my 86-year-old mother as a wealth of information that I, at some point, will no longer have access to. I want to keep pulling her thoughts, insights and family history out so I can pass it on to my children.
Have some fun, and don’t forget to tell Mom how much you love her!
Play to your family’s potential!
Pete Walsh is a demanding, courageous and playful Master Coach in Phoenix, Arizona. He is the founder of Peak Workout Business Coaching and the Family Business Performance Center. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.