Preparing the Next Generation

Preparing the Next Generation

by Leslie Dashew

Adding Value to the Next Generation

One of the greatest concerns in families who own businesses and families of wealth is how to assure that their assets will add value to their children’s lives–not hurt them. One of the particular challenges in parenting is how to give our children the right opportunities. Too often, we equate giving with gifts, setting things up for our kids, or making opportunities for them. However, these kinds of gifts may, in fact, be taking away opportunities for their growth, not adding to them.

When children don’t learn to use their own muscles (to talk, walk, or work) these muscles atrophy in the same way other “muscles” atrophy when children don’t learn to use them on their own. For example, if children don’t gain the motivation to do for themselves, they have little practice in developing their own competence (and thus their self-esteem), and then they lack a sense of responsibility for themselves or others. So preparing our offspring includes giving them the opportunity to do as much as they can for themselves, with coaching along the way. For many families with whom we work, there is a desire to perpetuate a family legacy. More…

Will the Circle Be Unbroken? Managing a Family Business Disaster

Will the Circle Be Unbroken?
Managing a Family Business Disaster

by Richard Narva
Principal Consultant, Genus Resources, Inc.

Sam and Jim were the boisterous and passionate owners and leaders of a thriving manufacturing company near Boston with 85 employees. They were also friends of mine. On the last Saturday in March, they went on a flight to Block Island, off Rhode Island. Their plane developed engine trouble and crash landed on Interstate 495, not far from their company, killing both men instantly.

Occurring just prior to the holiday season, this crash was especially agonizing for their families and friends. But Jim and Sam Snyder were also the owners, the board of directors, the CEO’s, and the leaders of Polymer Design, which they founded and grew from nothing to sustained success. More…