The Impact of Owner Conflicts on Lower Management and Staff and How Consultants Can Help

owner conflicts solved by business consultant
The Impact of Owner Conflicts on Lower Management and Staff and How Consultants Can Help 2

Owner conflicts are a deep wound for every company they happen in. When everyone is focusing internally, the company isn’t moving forward, leading to far-reaching consequences that extend beyond boardroom disputes.

These disagreements can disrupt the entire organisational structure, causing ripples that ultimately affect lower management and staff.

I. Decreased Morale and Productivity

One of the most immediate consequences of owner conflicts is the decline in employee morale and productivity. Employees caught in the crossfire of owner disputes often feel uncertain about the future of the company. As a result, they may become disengaged, leading to decreased productivity levels. According to a study published in the Harvard Business Review (source:, workplace conflicts, including those stemming from owner disputes, can reduce employee productivity by as much as 25%.

II. Employee Loyalty and Retention

Another critical aspect affected by owner conflicts is employee loyalty and retention. When owners are engaged in public disputes, it can erode the trust and loyalty that employees have in the company. Employees may begin to look for alternative job opportunities, fearing instability. A report by Deloitte (source: suggests that employee turnover rates can increase by up to 50% during periods of intense internal conflict.

III. Impaired Decision-Making

Owner conflicts can also trickle down to lower management and staff through impaired decision-making processes. When owners are at odds, they may delay crucial decisions, leading to uncertainty and indecision throughout the organiSation. A case study by the London School of Economics and Political Science (source: illustrates how prolonged disputes at the top level can hinder a company’s ability to adapt to changing market conditions, affecting everyone from managers to frontline workers.

IV. Communication Breakdown

Owner conflicts can also lead to a breakdown in communication channels. When owners are divided, it often becomes challenging to convey a unified vision and strategy to the workforce. As a result, lower management and staff may receive mixed messages, causing confusion and frustration. A survey conducted by PwC (source: found that 73% of employees believe that communication problems during owner conflicts negatively impact their work.

owner conflicts can have a profound impact on lower management and staff within an organisation. These effects manifest in decreased morale, reduced productivity, weakened employee loyalty, impaired decision-making, and communication breakdown. While these consequences are well-documented in various studies and reports, it is vital to remember that the severity and duration of these impacts can vary depending on the specific context and industry.

To mitigate these negative effects, proactive measures to resolve owner conflicts and improve communication are essential. By addressing the root causes of disputes and fostering a more harmonious ownership environment, companies can protect their most valuable assets – their employees – and ensure continued success in an increasingly competitive business landscape.

An Independent Perspective

Hiring a consultant to solve owner conflicts can help a business. Here are three key advantages, supported by reputable sources:

  1. Neutral Mediation: Independent consultants provide impartiality and neutrality when mediating owner disputes. According to a report by the American Bar Association (source:, impartial third-party mediators often have a higher success rate in resolving conflicts compared to internal attempts. Their neutrality helps in uncovering the root causes of disputes and guiding owners towards mutually agreeable solutions.
  2. Expertise and Experience: Independent consultants typically bring a wealth of expertise and experience to the table. An article in the Harvard Business Review (source: notes that consultants often have a deep understanding of industry-specific challenges and can draw from a vast pool of knowledge to find innovative solutions. Their experience in resolving similar conflicts can expedite the process, saving valuable time and resources for the business.
  3. Preservation of Business Continuity: Owner disputes can be disruptive to day-to-day operations. An analysis by McKinsey & Company (source: highlights that independent consultants can help expedite conflict resolution, ensuring minimal disruption to the business. This is critical for maintaining employee morale and customer confidence, ultimately safeguarding the company’s bottom line.

Incorporating independent consultants into the dispute resolution process not only offers a higher likelihood of successful resolution but also allows business owners to focus on strategic growth and profitability, rather than being embroiled in protracted internal conflicts.

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