There’s nothing like a crisis for creating a higher sense of urgency in succession planning
In January, a 7-year old girl was the miraculous lone survivor in a tragic plane crash that took the lives of both of her parents and her cousin. The parents were the owners of a second generation, 50-year old family business, Gutzler’s Furniture in Nashville, TN.
The Chicago Tribune reported, “Employee Troy Dunbar said a steady stream of people “from all over” was stopping by to offer condolences. Dunbar said store employees are doing OK in the aftermath of the crash, saying “the show must go on.”
Read the whole story here.
If Tragedy Strikes – Are You Ready?
With the majority of family businesses not having succession plans in place, these stories are becoming more common. If you don’t have a succession plan, you’re not alone. Less than 30% of family businesses have prepared a formal succession plan.
Learning to anticipate common family business issues can avert a future crisis
Usually we think of a founder’s health, or worse, death, when we think of contingency planning in a family business crisis. But reading the recent news there are other situations that can affect us almost as much.
FERGUSON, MISSOURI “IT’S A WAR ZONE OUT THERE”
How would your business continue to operate if there was civil unrest in your town. It doesn’t even need to be your location that is affected but a major market where your customers are.
DEMOULA’S MARKET BASKET FAMILY FEUD: COMPANY BOYCOTT
What happens when the conflict between two sides of a family escalates to the point of a work stoppage and customer boycott. In the Demoula’s case the employees and customers supported a boycott of the company when the board changed family management.
How Would Your Family Business Cope in a Crisis?
The above examples are extreme and not likely to happen in your family business. More likely your issues will involve the health of the founder, family conflict or a financial event.
The key is to identify, anticipate, and contingency plan for family business crises in advance. More…