Family businesses are proving increasingly successful despite high levels of behind-the-scenes conflict, politics and competition, according to researchers at Regent’s University London.
One hundred Regent’s students and graduates currently working in, or aspiring to become part of, a family business were surveyed to help identify consistent themes, challenges and concerns.
Regent's 'Developing Distinctive Leaders' (DDL) Programme Director, Dr Dena Michelli, explains:
“Family enterprises account for two-thirds of all businesses in the world. They are responsible for up to 80% of jobs in most countries, and generate an estimated 70-90% of GDP globally.
“Despite this success, less than a third of family-owned businesses survive after transferring to a second generation. We surveyed people working in industries as far afield as hospitality, logistics, retail, banking and manufacturing, and their problems were predominantly the same the world over.
“Navigating family pressures, which can influence everything from day-to-day operations through to boardroom decision-making, requires specialist knowledge and skills that are crucial in overcoming emotional and practical obstacles to long-term business success.”
Highlighting their biggest challenges and concerns, examples of family business heads and those working in second-generation position responses included:
Dr Michelli continues: “Family tensions and leadership succession are increasingly significant issues for many businesses. Building appropriate skills rapidly and credibly demands a focused-learning agenda based on international knowledge and experience.”