Article Library



Future Leaders are Eager to be Tested

Published August 30, 1993 Leon Danco |

Many potential successors complain they are not being given enough authority in the business, that employees regard them skeptically as “the Little Prince” or “Snow White,” an...


Nepotism Revisited

Published August 30, 1993 David W. Ewing |

Nepotism: The word continues to stick to family businesses like the proverbial tar baby, stigmatizing them in the view of outsiders as somehow inbred, unprofessional, second-rate. Questions about nep...


Three Family Franchises that Work

Published August 30, 1993 Stephen J. Simurda |

Ten years ago, Sandy and Rod Rockwell took a cold look at their future. Sandy was a homemaker and young mother in Fremont, Nebraska, and her husband, Rod, was working at a nearby meat packing plant th...


Learning to Delegate by Degrees

Published August 30, 1993 Susan Lazar |

“Delegation deficiency” is not a phrase coined by psychologists, but it's a classic trait, especially among business owners who have a driving need to control. The impact can be devastati...


What Your Banker Needs To Know

Published May 30, 1993 Bonnie M. Brown |

In late march, President Clinton announced changes in banking regulations which will allow banks to make more “character loans” to small business owners, loans that are based primarily on...


'Why Does This Kid Want To Work?'

Published May 30, 1993 William G. Mennen IV |

When the family hierarchy decides to sell the business, members of the younger generation are often left out in the cold. I was caught in just such a situation, which few outsiders can, or want to, un...


Key Choices To Be Made Before Planning Starts

Published May 30, 1993 Peter Davis |

Succession planning has three objectives: to efficiently and fairly distribute assets from older to younger generations; to pass control of the business in a way that will ensure effective business le...


Is There a Cure for Managerial Burnout?

Published May 30, 1993 James E. Barrett |

Even successful, affluent, healthy CEOs can lead (in Henry David Thoreau's words) “lives of quiet desperation.” They're fresh out of challenges. They hate the business. They don't like the communi...


Family Employees Should Not Be Fireproof

Published May 30, 1993 Leon Danco |

Business owners tend to pussyfoot when faced with the necessity of firing a family member. They want to be loved, they agonize. They just don't like to fire anybody, let alone a relative: “If I fire...


How To Build A Dynasty

Published May 30, 1993 Howard Muson |

The Beretta family has been making guns for the world's armies, kings and princes, and sportsmen for nearly five centuries. They trace their origins to one Bartolomeo Beretta, born before 1498, one o...


Anticipating the Needs of the Grandkids

Published May 30, 1993 Mike Cohn |

After Mort Spahn and his wife, Shirley, sold their chain of toy stores they began working diligently on their estate plan. As part of the plan, Mort, 70, and Shirley, 66, wanted to do something for t...


Why Some Family Firms Need a Scapegoat

Published May 30, 1993 Suzanne Stier |

The Lowrey family owns an elite private school on 150 acres of land in California's Orange County. Along with the parents, Bill and Mary, the school's founders, three of the Lowreys' married children ...


Sweet Company, Bitter Fight

Published May 30, 1993 Charles Storch |

Last April The Chicago Tribune reported on a family feud at the Blommer Chocolate Co., a $150 million confection maker in Chicago. The battle between the heirs of two of the three brothers who founde...


Twelve Tasks in Succession

Published May 30, 1993 Ivan Lansberg |

In my first session with owners of a family business, I have a simple, quick way of assessing how much thought they have given to continuity planning. After interviewing the power-holders individuall...


The Immortals

Published May 30, 1993 Howard Muson |

This october leaders of 25 of the world's oldest business dynasties will meet in Germany. They call themselves Les Hénokiens, after the Biblical patriarch Enoch, and they claim to comprise the...


Guarding the Family Name

Published May 30, 1993 Ellen Hawkes |

Ernest and Julio Gallo have built the world's largest wine empire. Poor when their parents died in 1933, they turned the family grape-growing business into a winery in Modesto, California, and raised...


Trusting the Business to Trustees

Published May 30, 1993 Michael L. Fay |

For families that run businesses, one of the most important uses of a trust is to ensure the smooth transfer of leadership and ownership from the current generation to the upcoming one.A trust is most...


The Charitable Way to Transfer a Business

Published March 30, 1993 Mike Cohn |

Royce, 72, was the sole owner of a successful 250-room hotel. He was proud that he and his son, George, 43, had built the company's value to $7.5 million without incurring a cent of debt. George had w...


Leather By Any Other Name Smells Just As Sweet

Published March 30, 1993 Robert Berman |

The smell of leather is so alluring that when visitors arrive at Berman Leather Co. they close their eyes and breathe in deeply, before even saying hello. That is the only similarity, however, between...


Asking the Right Questions About Your Future

Published March 30, 1993 Paul Frishkoff |

Clients as well as students sometimes come to us for advice about careers in the family business. Usually, they are pondering questions like: Should I join the business? Should I remain in the busine...