Having a proper governance structure is essential to the succession process for family businesses. The lack of proper communication channels is often the root of much of the conflict during both the management and ownership succession processes.
Grant Thornton proposes family business meetings and family councils as governance structures that can be implemented to increase the comfort of the current owners and help groom the potential successors - all while keeping honest and open communication between the family and the business. These two governance structures will keep the business and the family well-informed, which will lead to better decision-making for all parties.
It can be argued that a family council meeting should only be held once effective family business meetings can be held by the active family members. However, this may not be the case for all family businesses. Grant Thornton can advise on this, and facilitate the implementation of the ideal governance structure based on the exact scenario.