Critical Components to Family Business Success with Kimberly Eddleston

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As part of the series on family business, I invited Kimberly Eddleston to be on this show. She is recognized as a leading scholar of entrepreneurship by the Schulze Family Foundation that awarded her the nationally recognized Schulze Distinguished Professorship. She also serves as an Academic Scholar at Cornell University Smith Family Business Initiative. Her research focuses on family businesses and the careers of entrepreneurs. She is particularly known for her research that explores how the family can be a resource or constraint to the family business and how family businesses can remain innovative through generations.

She has assisted more than 150 businesses to date and also had involvement in her own family's businesses. She is someone that has the educational background, real world experience and professional experience serving other families. She has all the vantage points. We talk about what holds families back in transitioning generations, the importance of how we ready family members to be the backbone of the family, how who we are as a family impacts the business, and many other things. This is an episode you will want to listen to more than once.

What you’ll learn in this episode:

  • The top reasons why family businesses decide to sell
  • How family dysfunction impacts the business
  • The dangers of putting off conflict within the family
  • How and why to create a family council
  • The first things to consider when moving towards transition
  • Why many family business choose advisors over a board of directors
  • How to choose who is on your bench
  • Getting young children involved in the business
  • Best practices to create strong relationships between relatives
  • The challenges American families face that families in other countries do not
  • Why it’s so difficult for Founders to pass on the business and what to do about it
  • What do do when family members are under-performing
  • The importance of having rules for entry for family members who want to be involved in the business

Resources:

www.familybusiness.org

Bio:

Kimberly Eddleston is recognized as a leading scholar of entrepreneurship by the Schulze Family Foundation that awarded her the nationally recognized Schulze Distinguished Professorship. She also serves as an Academic Scholar at Cornell University Smith Family Business Initiative. Her research focuses on family businesses and the careers of entrepreneurs. She is particularly known for her research that explores how the family can be a resource or constraint to the family business (i.e. The Fredo Effect) and how family businesses can remain innovative through generations. She has extensive experience working with family businesses in the U.S. and abroad and is routinely invited to present at family business events for executives as well as academics. Professor Eddleston grew up working for several of her family's businesses and remains an active stakeholder.

Audiogram:

25:34 who does it mean to be an eddleston - 26:00 envision working together

29:00 as soon as you talk about succession - 29:50 that family business often are

34 episodes