Most families have a few annual rituals that happen this time of year. They could be gathering for a meal, exchanging gifts and expressing gratitude, for instance.
The families we serve want to take the right steps to create a strong, successful and sustainable family business that can be a source of family purpose and financial security.
Here are a few rituals we’ve noticed the most successful families practice:
Annual goal setting for the business and each of the family members
The business’s goal setting assesses market trends and helps ensure the business is evolving to stay competitive and financially solid. The individual goals include personal skill building and education.
This ensures the family members are prepared to provide the business the skills and leadership needed to execute the business plans.
Annual gathering of all family stakeholders
In our family business, we had a small number of family members that were full-time employees in the business. There was a larger group of non-family employees who also had a vested interest in the success of the business.
Great family leaders realize for the overall health of the family, it’s important to give that broader audience a venue to ask questions and feel connected to the business as well.
Exit strategies and options
The best family businesses realize that like any big tree, it has to be able to have some healthy “pruning” for its long-term health. Another annual ritual can be to check in with everyone about their desire for ownership in the business.
The Walshes “pruned the family tree” in 1935 and 1975 as the family grew and faced certain situations that brought risk to the overall health of the business.
The family should discuss this subject and have mechanisms in place like buy-sell agreements. If and when situations arise (and they will) the family will be well prepared. So, as you head into the new year, consider adding a few of these annual rituals to your family’s yearly calendar.
Our Family Business Playbook gives you over 20 step-by-step exercises to create a long-term, sustainable business.
Play to your potential!
Pete Walsh is a demanding, courageous and playful Master Coach in Phoenix, Arizona. He is the founder of Peak Workout Business Coaching and the Family Business Performance Center. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.