Monday, January 28, 2013

Family Business Crisis Planning

      I spent one morning last week with 53 family business owners and came away from the experience encouraged that there are small and family business leaders that are smarter and have more foresight than nearly half of all big business executives.
    
      That is assuming the best guess estimate that only about 45 to 55 percent of big organizations have a complete operational/communication/continuity-recovery crisis plan in place and ready to use.
     
       The Family Business Center of the University of Louisville School of Business has an excellent on-going program for family business leaders and they invited me to present a workshop on crisis prevention and crisis management planning.
     
       Family businesses face the same potential problems and business disruptions that any other business does, but they have a couple of unique issues that non-family organizations don't.
      
       When several family members share ownership and operational responsibilities there is the added potential for intra-family feuds and disagreements.  And, while all businesses need to have a succession plan, a family business succession plan is not only critical, but it must be carefully considered and shared with all the family members likely affected.
       
       If the head of the family business dies unexpectedly and has not prepared his/her heirs with the succession plan, there can be turmoil and bitter feelings that can destroy what's left of the business and family relationship.

      To learn more about the U of L Family Business Center visit:  http://business.louisville.edu/fbc/
and for help with your Family Business Crisis Plan: larrysmith@crisisconsultant.com .  

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