Having a family business is no walk in the park, especially because of the emotional baggage that comes along with blood ties, and that can influence and affect a business in many ways.
But if it’s well managed, it can be as successful as a corporate company, growing over time and, most rewarding, passing it on from generation to generation as a common good among the loved ones involved.
As we already mentioned, taking a family-run business to the next level can be intimidating, but there is no need to fear. With these tips, your company will be more successful than ever:
Identifying the skills and strengths of each of the members of your staff is the key ingredient to keep the company running smoothly.
Assign roles depending on how they can contribute to the company’s growth and develop structures with internal processes and job descriptions (including your family). Everyone should know their tasks and goals inside the company.
Create a Family Council
A family council is a strategic and positive move towards the growth of your business.
It will help you make decisions as a whole and find consensus, reduce conflict, and unify, providing an organized way to achieve the company’s objectives and formalizing the bond between family and business for the generations to come.
If you don’t know where to start, there are consulting firms specializing in this type of company, setting up a good family protocol and putting it on paper instead of verbal agreements.
If you want to expand your company, you need everyone to be on the same page, especially among the family partners in the company. In order to grow, you need to have the same amount of commitment in each one of the members of the team, as well as sharing the same vision for the business. Let everyone know why you would like to grow and how it will benefit the business in the long term, and we can assure you they will all be on board.
Hire outside the (family) box
Looking for external candidates could feel like you are getting out of your safe zone, but adding talented and unrelated professionals to your company translates into a neutral point of view, and fresh and different ideas for the sake of the business,
That being said, make sure to pick your employees wisely. They should be qualified for the position, and most importantly, have the same values and represent the company as if they were your own family.
If you still haven’t come up with a formal succession plan, you’re not the only one. According to PwC, only 18% of America’s family-owned businesses have a documented strategy when it comes to their business succession.
A succession plan has to include the course of action for when the time of retiring comes, who will be in charge of the business once the founders decide to finally pass the torch, financial planning and also guarantee that the job will still be done even if the owner is no longer present in the company.
As you can see, having a family business represents unique challenges that will require organization and management, but if you strike the right balance, growth will come next.
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