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By Jay Mattie
In addition to general business challenges—like the economy, competition and the need for product innovation—family-owned companies must contend with issues unique to family businesses, such as the need to preserve harmony. But potential family disagreements need not threaten the survival of the business. Early and proactive planning before the issues arise enables family businesses to successfully navigate internal and external pressures.
Shareholder policies are one element of planning that can prove instrumental in maintaining family harmony. They can help manage the sometimes overlapping and frequently competing interests of three key constituents of a family business:
• Family members.
• Owners or stockholders.
• Business … Read more
You welcome your in-laws to your holiday table. But do you welcome them to join your family business governance structures?
In his wonderful book Family: The Compact Among Generations, retired family wealth consultant James E. Hughes Jr. writes:
Holding tight to the principle that only shared "blood" entitles a member to participate in family governance requires that many persons be excluded from it and thus from family decision making. Ironically, this out-group consists of people who consider themselves family members and whom the family considers in all other respects to be family members....
Given the difficulty of attempting to become a family … Read more
Hemenway & Barnes LLP partner Frederic J. Marx, head of the Business Law Group, discusses the “4Ds” businesses should consider before they occur.
Read the related paper here.
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