Easing Strains in Partner-Managed Firms

by Melville D. Hensey, (M.ASCE), Principal; Hensey Associate, Cincinatti, Ohio,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1984, Vol. 54, Issue 8, Pg. 52-53

Document Type: Feature article


The family-like nature of partnerships promotes shared management responsibilities but creates conflict. Partnerships, like families, are often taken for granted by the partners. Nonpartners must be aware of the partner attitudes toward one another and treat the partners' family-like setup with care. Alleviating strains among partners and between partners and nonpartner employees requires improved planning and nonpartner employee involvement. Better understanding of partnership dynamics and potential problems leads to increased productivity and better communication. Suggestions for reducing partner-employee tensions and improving the effectiveness of partner-run firms include promoting key employees of partner caliber and providing other incentives to retain skilled staff, developing advanced management skills, and providing financial payoffs for partner investments.

Subject Headings: Employees | Strain | Dispute resolution | Tension | Investments

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