We advise family business owners as they move through critical transitions. We guide them in creating a long-term family vision and facilitate the often-difficult decision-making and implementation process required to reach that vision.
Helping Families Get Better, Not Just Feel Better
Family-Focused Succession Planning
We help clients and their advisors address the relational issues that often make the family succession process so challenging. We connect with the members of each generation in a non-judgmental manner, providing a safe forum to talk through difficult subjects. We ensure that your family has the support it needs to persevere and explore multiple options.
The pre-nuptial process presents a unique opportunity for couples contemplating marriage in the context of significant wealth. We work with couples to examine their relationship, the emotional components raised by the topic of money, and the legal questions that can impact their future together. We prioritize maintaining the current and future health of the relationship while couples work through the technicalities of the pre-nuptial process.
We work with family businesses to design workable structures for decision-making in the family, the ownership group and the business, with a focus on the goals and tasks of each group. We also help identify the leadership roles and responsibilities for each group. Once these structures and processes are in place, our clients can move confidently towards their goals as a family and as a business.
We believe that starting with a “Shared Purpose” is essential as it describes the “glue” that bonds family members together relative to its collective investments. A family’s Shared Purpose is shaped by several elements:
Vision – describes the desired future state and goals which define success;
Values – express the family’s sense of right and wrong and how things should be done; and
Statement of Mission – what the owners, board, management and family must do or become to achieve the Vision.
Regardless of the countless strengths and talents each individual brings to the family and the business, it is the Shared Purpose that will drive the long-term success of the family enterprise.
Family Conflict in the Workplace
Conflict in the workplace, whether among managers or family members, affects the capacity of a business to plan strategically and function effectively. We provide a framework and the guidance to help families approach uncomfortable topics. By dealing with conflict in a constructive way, families build a stronger connection and realize shared goals for the business and family.
Families who have determined the “who” in ownership often need help figuring out the “how.” By providing help beyond traditional business advice, we enable richer conversations about how owners can handle decision-making, determine responsibilities and find consensus to best develop financial and human capital.
Families approach philanthropic giving in a variety of ways … sometimes there is consensus on giving, while at other times decisions may have been made in a vacuum. We work with families who need help establishing thoughtful decision-making around philanthropy and understanding how their giving impacts their families and the world. We guide conversations about philanthropic priorities and goals and about how to weave philanthropic activities into the family’s shared purpose.
It’s important that boards are aligned with the family business vision and are energized to fulfill that vision. We have experience creating customized processes and structures, or strengthening existing ones, to help existing and newly established boards balance competing management and fiduciary interests while supporting family goals.
The essential task of the family is to raise responsible, capable adults with the confidence to pursue their own dreams. Through carefully planned retreats and workshops, we encourage families to develop this confidence across generations. By working to build communication, connection and common purpose, the family bonds are strengthened, resulting in a more secure future for the family and the family business.
Building Great Leaders
Family business is a great crucible for developing the leadership qualities needed in each generation. This is leadership that builds connectedness, while also supporting autonomy and that is interested in the meaning as well as the mechanics of the family business. We work with rising generations to ensure they have the leadership skills necessary to sustain the enterprise and ensure the legacy of family.
“We have a demonstrated track record for helping families move beyond the road blocks to solve their problems. They become healthier families and better at running their business.”