The Added Values & Vulnerabilities that Families Bring to the Enterprise
Listen to John A. Davis, discuss the added values and vulnerabilities that families bring to an enterprise. Often, the strong emphasis of values in a family business, help guide long-term decisions and create a natural environment of respect in the work place, however, family businesses are often weaker when it comes to dealing with internal problems and giving feedback. To ensure the success of a family business, it is essential to identify and highlight the business’ strengths, while address and compensate for any weaknesses.
Pay attention to what the family brings to this enterprise that works and that, typically, it’s values around long-term decisions and long-term investments and long term relationships. Those are very helpful to companies of all kinds. The emphasis on stakeholder loyalty is something that families do work at naturally and that’s something that really matters in these companies, the emphasis on quality and persistent improvements. Those are values that families bring into organizations. So figure out what the family’s bringing that’s valuable and that adds to the strength of that family foundation, but also, figure out the vulnerabilities that families can bring into their enterprise and work on them. You know, families tend to have difficulty addressing internal conflicts, and giving performance feedback and making decisions that are clearly in the interest of the company, but that perhaps might upset the family or part of the family. Families have difficulty with that. And good families, good families in business figure that out and then they structure in the rules, the policies, the external advisors to shore up where they’re weak so they can do it right.