One of the most challenging difficulties facing family businesses is succession, as most do not survive through the second generation. One of the sheer concerns among those who succeed is how a successor will treat non-family staff.
Perceptions of nepotism in succession might harm non-family employees’ commitment to the company and its participation. The opportunity to designate a family successor and provide employment prospects for family members is generally a fundamental goal of family business owners, making addressing this prevalent issue difficult.
As a result, securing buy-in from non-family personnel for the next generation of family leadership is a significant problem for family businesses.
The text below will highlight some keys tips for family business succession planning.
1. Set Accountability for Successors
Non-family employees frequently get the impression that family members are less accountable or responsible than they are. Aspiring successors should exhibit competence and model accountability to counteract the negative effects of such perceptions.
Non-family employees’ suspicions that the successor is a product of nepotism can alleviate by credentials such as schooling or outside experience. Such demonstrations of leadership ability can encourage non-family colleagues to buy-in.
Likewise, family businesses should expect more from potential successors. Longer hours and more difficult assignments during the transition process might instill trust in the successor’s dedication among non-family personnel. That can reassure employees that a family successor is qualified for the position.
2. Plan Succession Beforehand
Five years ahead of time is wonderful, but ten years ahead of time is even better. Many business advisors urge aspiring entrepreneurs to include an exit strategy in their business plans. The more amount of time you have to devote to succession planning, the easier the transition will be.
3. Discuss With Immediate Family Members
Making your succession plan and then making it public is the surest way to cause family strife. Discussing the strategy with the family can help determine who wants to be directly involved and who is more interested in other things. It may also assist certain family members in discovering an interest in a business.
4. Be Practical and Straightforward
You might choose your first-born child to head the company, but does he have the necessary business abilities, let alone the desire? It’s possible that no one in the family is capable of or interested in maintaining the firm. Perhaps another member of the family is more capable. Therefore it’s best to sell it. Examine all potential successors’ strengths as objectively as possible.
5. Keep Business First
While ensuring that everyone has an equal slice of the pie may appear to be a good idea, it may not be in your company’s best interests. It may be more equitable for the successor(s) you’ve picked to run the firm to possess a larger portion of the company than family members who aren’t involved.
Another option is to use voting and nonvoting shares so that just a few of the family shareholders can make policy decisions. It could be appropriate to hand up both administration and ownership to your selected successor and make additional financial arrangements for your other children.