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Dirty Little Secrets of Family Business

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Dirty Little Secrets of Family Business

Ensuring Success from One Generation to the Next

Greenleaf Book Group,

15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Plan correctly to keep your business in the family for generations.

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Owning a family business can offer many rewards. You can build wealth while you work alongside the people you care about most. But thriving family businesses frequently dissolve into lawsuits, lost income and strife. Consultant Henry Hutcheson says that a family firm must balance the business’s quest for profits with the family’s desire for harmony. In this extensive instruction manual, Hutcheson offers tips on resolving conflicts, preventing a sense of entitlement in the succeeding generation, setting up a board of advisers and attending to shareholders’ interests. His advice is a quick, interesting read free from gimmicky concepts and consultant-speak. getAbstract recommends Hutcheson’s guidance to founders and senior managers of family businesses, as well as to board members and future managers from succeeding generations.


Family Affairs

According to the Family Firm Institute, family enterprises make up more than 70% of all businesses. Family businesses outperform nonfamily firms, have historically been the most substantial job creators and make significant contributions to GDP.

Starting and running a business with your relatives holds many attractions. You get to work with the people you love in an atmosphere of trust. You have a great resource for your children’s future. While they’re still in high school, they can gain work experience in the firm’s departments and functions. Later they can join the business or use their experience elsewhere.

A family business also holds unique challenges and pitfalls. The goal of a business – profit – can conflict with familial goals of love and emotional support. Two-thirds of family firms fail to make the transfer from one generation to the next. But, if you attend to a few important areas, you can help ensure that your company makes a smooth, profitable transition to the next generation.

Communication: The Family Meeting

Effective, open communication is the most critical factor in a family business’s success, both in the...

About the Author

Henry Hutcheson founded and serves as president of Family Business USA, a consulting firm for businesses that are family-owned.

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