Article Library



Creative Ideas for Building an Upscale Image

Published May 30, 1995 Allison V. Malcolm |

Big business is perceived as the primary commercial supporter of the arts in the United States. However, more and more small and medium-sized companies—many of them family owned—are developing inn...


Good Boards Engage in Self-Evaluation

Published May 30, 1995 F. Friedrich Neubauer |

Family business owners should never forget that their responsibility reaches well outside the family. It includes employees, suppliers, customers, and the communities where the business operates. This...


How to Get Capable Relatives Off Welfare

Published May 30, 1995 Joel I. Cherwin |

Fred Silvestri's window manufacturing operation in Battle Creek, Michigan, has grown steadily over the last 10 years. Fred knows his oldest son, Stan, company vice-president, will eventually take over...


Clashing Cymbals are Music to Their Ears

Published May 30, 1995 Nancy Shepardson |

For years Avedis of Constantinople, an alchemist by trade, searched for the secret that would allow him to transmute base metals into gold. What he found instead, in 1623, was a combination of tin, co...


How to Rebuild Business Trust

Published May 30, 1995 Kenneth Kaye |

What miswiring of family circuits could possibly lead sons to stage a boardroom coup against a father, as in the Shoen family of U-Haul? What lifelong process of decay could turn a relationship so ro...


Enjoy the Grandkids--Don't Mentor Them

Published May 30, 1995 Leon Danco |

The other day I had a call from a man who had attended one of my seminars with his wife in Puerto Rico in 1978. This man had been working for 26 years in a business owned by his wife's family. &ldquo...


Love, Work, and Scrambled Eggs

Published May 30, 1995 Rich Davis |

In case you didn't notice when you got home last night, participating in a business and participating in a family are two very different experiences. Each has its own goals and purposes, and, yes, th...


How to Build Character From Beyond the Grave. Not.

Published May 30, 1995 J. Peder Zane |

Sometimes, life imitates bad art. B-movies, to be exact—like “Easy Money,” “Brewster's Millions,” and “Billy Madison”—where the willful old millionaire...


Lessons in Realpolitik for Successors

Published May 30, 1995 Ivan Lansberg |

Understanding power—its uses and abuses—is one of the most formidable challenges that face aspiring successors as they rise to positions of authority in family companies. The relatively s...


Letting Go With Grace and Style

Published May 30, 1995 Shu Shu Costa |

It's Monday afternoon and John Beever, the fourth-generation president of John Dittmar & Sons, has just come in from mowing the grass at his 79-acre horse farm in Maryland. He heads straight for ...


The Power of the Chief Emotional Officer

Published March 30, 1995 Ivan Lansberg |

Recently, I was invited to participate in the annual shareholders’ meeting of a large, third-generation European company. The high point of the meeting was the appearance of the founder’s wife, a ...


Cowabunga! Fam-Firms Ride the Third Wave

Published March 30, 1995 Howard Muson |

Alvin and Heidi Toffler appear to be Newt Gingrich’s favorite futurists. The Republican Speaker of the House quotes their books frequently and says he often seeks their counsel. They have been highl...


Second Opinions on Great Tax Escapes

Published March 30, 1995 Irving L. Blackman |

It’s amazing. Most successful family business owners toil their entire lives to build the business and the family’s wealth. Yet the day they die is a big payday for the IRS. Far too many business ...


Preventing Your Secrets From Walking Out The Door

Published March 30, 1995 Marc C. Laredo |

It happens more often than you think. A relative knowingly divulges confidential information to a competitor. A son or daughter leaves the firm, on good terms or bad, and starts a competing company r...


Why Leaders Need to Redefine Accountability

Published March 30, 1995 Edwin A. Hoover |

You have an employee who’s not carrying his weight, and, even though you’ve talked to the person about it several times, nothing has changed. Other employees see the problem, too, and are...


The Right Kind of Attorney

Published March 30, 1995 Family Business |

Richard Narva, moderator The legal profession is learning to appreciate the special skills and sensitivities required to serve family business clients. As more attorneys enter the market, they are ...


Happiness Is Stock Liquidity

Published March 30, 1995 Francois M. de Visscher |

The lack of liquidity options is the most frequently cited source of unhappiness among passive family shareholders. The demands of these shareholders frequently escalate in later generations at just ...


When Faith Comes First

Published March 30, 1995 Jayne A. Pearl |

Some family businesses put family before business in many decisions; others emphasize business before family on key matters. A great many, however, openly and proudly give priority to their religious...


Time to Open Up the Information Spigot

Published March 30, 1995 Leon Danco |

"Thou shalt maintain an orthodox accounting system and make available the data therefrom to thine officers and managers." You won’t find that commandment anywhere in either the Old Testament ...


How Excellent Companies Do It

Published March 30, 1995 Mark Fischetti |

There are no Academy Awards for family businesses. Their leaders are not featured nearly enough on the covers of popular magazines. There are numerous first-rate family businesses, of course, but the...