Keeping Your Business in the Family

You may want to keep your business in the family, as opposed to selling it to an outside party or another business. If this is your plan, you should be aware of some of the issues that can contribute to the success or the failure of the business as it is transferred to the successor generation. Some of the issues revolve around personality and control, while others have to do with your potential need for future income and the demands it can place on the business. Insight, planning, and open discussion can contribute to the successful transfer and continuation of the family business.

Emotional issues--Family succession

Conflicting needs and values

Families and businesses commonly have conflicting needs and values. These conflicting needs often overlap in a family business, as family roles and perceptions come into play inside the business. It can sometimes be hard to look beyond the family relationships and see the strengths of a family member as an employee. It is important for the continued success of your family business that family issues and business issues are kept separate. One tool that has been found to be useful is the formation of a family council to establish plans for both business and family goals. Formal succession plans can be used to ease concerns about transferring ownership and to prepare the successors for their new roles. In addition, estate planning is critical for both the family and the business to ensure that the estate goes primarily to your heirs and not to pay taxes.

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