Trusting Others Outside of the Inner Family Circle

As family business owners, we are a trustworthy group. We tend to be easy-going and get along well with others.  Generally we are more sensitive to employees concerns, even treating them as extensions of our own family.

However, this trusting culture, can also leave us vulnerable to outside non-family executives who might take advantage of our unique corporate culture.  If we aren’t careful, we may find our business being taken advantage of by individuals who seek out closely-held businesses where they can gain undue power and influence.

We’ll Never Do That Again, But We Did

Our first experiences bringing in outside non-family executives were horror stories. These hiring mistakes happened to us, embarrassingly, not once, but twice.  The first instance was More…

The Burden of Legacy

“the night before closing the deal. My brother and I sat in a car in the parking lot outside the office building and reflected about whether we failed in carrying on the legacy”

Many family businesses are caught in the dilemma of whether to pass along the business to the next generation or sell the business. The senior generation needs to plan for retirement and feel confident that the younger generation can run the business, and the younger generation has to decide whether they want to stay involved or move on to a different career . Unfortunately, most of the time the family legacy affects the decision.  This legacy can become a burden and lead to a demise of the business if the succession plan includes a younger generation who is continuing on for the sake of the legacy of the founders rather than following their true ambitions.

In our family business, our parents removed the legacy issue as an issue, by More…