The global economy is on a downward plunge with an almost-guaranteed worldwide recession on the cards. In a period of time when financial stress is crushing Family Business and Family Wealth, all members of the family – from older generations leading the business to younger generations waiting in the wings – must ensure that they are adequately equipped and prepared to take the correct course of action.
In the history of entrepreneurial families, the strength and uniqueness of the ownership and management’s vision has been a key competitive advantage of the Family Business. But this has often come at a cost, because such dominant or singular vision can unintentionally generate devastating effects on fundamental family assets – family affection and relationships.
These underlying fractures can be glossed over during good times, but will come under immense pressure and strain in times of crisis and challenges, and may even be “the straw that breaks the camel’s back”. It is critical, now more than ever, that Family Businesses do not rest on their laurels, but instead take a proactive approach to “future-proof” and ensure resiliency of their key asset – family relationships.
Given the intricacies and complexities of family relationships, it is especially useful to work with an external mentor and/or coach. He/she can provide frank, neutral and constructive guidance, and tailor appropriate steps/measures to addressing identified issues. For example, helping to better organize the communication of ideas between generations so that family members can be more effective and coordinated in taking the right course of action, while avoiding any hard feelings that can disrupt relationships.
A crisis often forces businesses to take a closer look at their fundamentals and foundations. For Family Businesses which are, by definition, built on the strength of the Family, this will be a critical time to take action to secure their foundations and become more effective in making the right choices for both the Business and most importantly, the Family.