The Non-family Members of a Family Business


The Non-family Members of a Family Business

Delaware Business Review
by Nancy F. Blumberg, CPA, CFP
Simon Master & Sidlow, P.A.

Key non-family personnel are just as important to successfully operate a family business as family members are to the business. Attracting and retaining these non-family members will help the family firm grow and prosper.

There are a number of creative ways to keep those key employees happy without jeopardizing the family’s control of the business. To determine the most rewarding benefit to the key employee, first the owners need to be aware of the non-family manager’s expectations and concerns.

It’s not unusual for a key non-family employee to expect sick leave, disability, retirement and medical benefits.This employee will expect to be comparably compensated to others on his level in the industry.

Concerns that need to be addressed are: if the employee remains healthy, what will the employee have at the end of this tenure?Also, what happens if the company goes through a succession during the employee’s tenure – what part will the employee play? More…

Balance, Grace and Crashing Reply

Balance, Grace and Crashing
Just shy of my fifth birthday I was pedaling along, struggling to relax into that certain combination of caution and grace, hoping for balance on my two wheeler. It was an early foray into the world of self-propulsion, but at least my father was running along, holding the back of the seat.To reassure myself, I asked my father if he was still supporting me. I called out to him approximately every eight seconds. He continued to announce his presence, but something seemed odd. His voice was fading, more and more of a shout, but as if from far behind. I turned, to find him some 50 yards back. For another few feet, I was more free than ever in my life. Until I crashed into a ’58 Caddy (parked) I was exhilarated by the thrill of my first solo flight.

Flash forward to a conversation with a close friend, after I’d spent fifteen adult years in my family’s fourth generation retail store alongside my parents. “I don’t know if I could ever run the business without my parents at the helm. I know that I have a lot of the necessary knowledge and skills, but do I have what it takes to really take charge?” More…