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Family businesses

CEO succession in family businesses

Planning for the succession of the CEO in a family-run business requires a series of considerations and carefully planned decisions. In some instances, the person leading the board of directors may be resistant to being replaced. Therefore, it is necessary to take a number of steps to avoid conflicts and ensure that the succession process can be carried out as smoothly as possible.

In a mixed board of directors, non-family members often need to gauge their contribution and how they say things carefully. Strong interpersonal dynamics are at play here, and it is, therefore, essential to understand how what is being said will be perceived by family members. When an outsider is chosen to replace a member of the family acting as the CEO, it is important that all board members feel confident about the decision. An external and unbiased evaluation of all candidates carried out by a specialised firm, could be a desirable option in this case, as it eliminates favoritism.

Communication and transparency throughout the process are also of paramount importance as they will make all board members feel that their opinion has been taken into consideration. Learning how to move effectively in such a scenario is essential for family-owned businesses to avoid undermining the board’s effectiveness.


There is no one-size-fits-all approach

Our solutions for family enterprises focus on aligning all aspects of the family and business, including culture, vision, mission, values, governance, ownership, leadership, communication and policy development. As there is no off-the-shelf solution to supporting family businesses, whenever a new client approaches us, our family business advisors leverage the type of business, organization size and different personalities involved in the enterprise in order to produce a plan capable of meeting the specific needs of the client, and ensure that ownership issues are dealt with in a practical and structured approach. Get in touch with one of our experts and find out how we can help your business grow.