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5 great lessons for running a family business

It has always been said that money and family do not go well together. It is one of the most common root causes of disagreements and quarrels, which is why running a family business is not the easiest to undertake.

Nevertheless, it is also one of the most flourishing types of business as the majority of the richest Chinoy entrepreneurs gained immense success from their respective family businesses. Case in point: the Sy family, Gokongwei family and Tan family, to name a few.

Want to know more about what it takes to be a successful family business that spans generations? Here are 6 helpful pieces of advice to be learned from the successful families themselves. 

1. Always communicate with each other

The first step to preventing family quarrels in the business is to always openly communicate with each other. If family members refuse to speak up on small issues, it would soon snowball into bigger issues that if left unresolved, can greatly affect how the business is run.

2. Set boundaries between family matters and business matters

One of the biggest challenges in a family business is preventing issues within the family from overlapping with that of the business. It is important to set boundaries and establish a professional atmosphere in the workplace, whether the colleague you are working with is a sibling, cousin or even your parent.

This also means respecting each other and trusting in their capabilities in doing their responsibilities for the company.

3. Get an outside perspective

Although it is a family business, there is no harm in getting people not from the family to take the helm in leading the business. This gives the company a fresh and objective point of view, especially during times of important decision-making which cannot afford to be interlaced with familial ties and emotions.

4. Give exposure for the younger generation

While the parents or the grandparents may want the younger members of the family to immediately join running the business, it is always a good idea to give them experience first from other companies.

This allows them to get a feel of what it’s like in the real work environment without any special treatment since they are not working for the family. This helps truly ingrain in them the value of hard work, discipline, and control.

Also, do not force the younger ones to join the business but instead, allow them to follow the career path they are truly passionate about. This means that only those who are truly devoted to the company are the ones who will be taking its reins and eventually lead it to its success.

5. Be open to change

It may be tempting to stick to the tried-and-tested traditions of how the family business is run, especially if it proves successful as of now. Nevertheless, it does not guarantee a success that spans into the future and into the later generations of the family.

With our constantly evolving world today, be ready to change and adapt to the ways of the modern age. This can range from adapting to new technology to developing company culture. Whatever this may be, change is always a necessity to prolong the success of the business while keeping the family’s core legacies and values intact.

Running a successful family business is no easy feat but hopefully with these five tips, achieving success in the family empire is hopefully more reachable for now and creates a win-win situation– a thriving business and a deeper familial relationship for all.

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