Thinking of starting a new business? Maybe a business with family? Planning for a family business start-up should be done as with any other business planning. Most businesses fail within two years, and most failures are a direct result of not doing the necessary research and paper-work before opening the business.
The local Chamber of Commerce has excellent information and brochures telling what points to consider before starting any business, and a family business is no exception. Without consideration that family will be involved in the business, these suggestions should be followed.
There is only one boss in a business. It is essential in a family owned business that each family member knows in advance what their duties and obligations will be. Remember, being fair is not the same as being equal. Each family member should be treated and compensated based on their individual capabilities, just as any other employee. Nepotism is quickly recognized and creates ill feelings among family members and other employees.
Owning and operating a business also required a deep seeded drive and desire to succeed. Furthermore, it required a passion for that industry. That’s the only thing that could have sustained the owner during the rough patches that come in running a firm.
Although family members are familiar with one another (both the good points and the bad points), it is important to present a family business with a strict business appearance. Even going as far as calling people by name, rather than “mom” or “dad”, is advisable. A professional atmosphere will go far in winning clients.
While at work, leave family business at home. Family plans or discussions can be left until the work day or week is over.
Likewise, when the business day or week is done, leave business at the office. Business discussions at the dinner table should not occur. Family members not involved in the family business will feel left out. Differences of opinion that happened at the office should never be brought home and discussed.
A wise tip from Family Business Experts is, “Never abuse the business for the family, and never abuse the family for the business.”