Things to Keep in Mind When Growing Your Family Business

Written by Roberta Fisher – Gadd Business Consultants 


Opening and maintaining a successful family business requires all involved to have similar goals and expectations for the business.  Family businesses often-times have a harder time keeping family and business separate. Below are a few suggestions for planning ahead to avoid this from happening to you and your business.

Of course, at the beginning of your venture you all start out with the vision, expectations and goals, while sinking all your money into the business to get it off the ground.  All profits at this time are placed into running the business.  The time to decide on issues is made at the time of the issue, without time to consider all components of the issue.  Usually the possession and the administration of the business is brought down to one or two people.  This can cause some confusion amongst the joint owners of the family business.

To assist with the administrative side of the business be sure to have a business development plan, job descriptions, board members, when to start taking a salary from the business and employee policies.

You will need to look at who will replace the creators of the business and when will that succession be (age/ company benchmark / death / marriage).  This person will need to possess the values, objectives and direction to ensure the continued success of the business through growth, change and technology.

Be sure to stay on top of any legal issues/policies by reviewing and keeping them up to date.  This would include policies or procedures to cover areas of death, marriage or divorce that would affect the ownership or management of the business.

Remember to stay true to the founding values upon which you started the business. Make sure you continue to uphold your targets and objectives through-out all the business stages.