The Business Come First and MUST Thrive
When planning to transition your company to the next generation, or when cleaning up the messy pile that was left to you, the bottom line is this:
To succeed from 1st to 2nd to 3rd generation you need to evolve and grow. We cannot squander or screw up that special asset and golden goose that was transferred, sold, or gifted.
For 2nd generation owners, this starts with putting your egos and childhood baggage aside. Sharing the ownership of your company, especially with siblings, can blur the lines between business and family. Having a system that clearly defines roles is a great first step toward keeping family and business issues separate. There is a legal component we all know about called Buy/Sell Operator Agreements but, equally important, there needs to be open and honest communication on how to treat one another and behave as business partners. It is important to address the intangible issues that legal paperwork cannot solve.
When defining roles within the company for 2nd Generation, it is important to figure out who is good at what. Who is the visionary? Who is strong at sales? Who is strong at operations or finance? The skillset and passion of the founder do not always get passed to their children – but do not necessarily have to for the company to continue to succeed. By the time the 2nd and 3rd generations are taking over, the company is already on its feet and established. These future generations need to know how to double or triple down on what is working and adapt along the way. Fortunately, 2nd generational owners do not need to be just like the founder as long there are smart decisions made and passion. Avoiding big financial mistakes is just as important as evolving over time.
2nd Generation Success – And Struggles
As a 2nd generation co-owner of the Unified Communications Provider- Telecloud, I am personally invested in the realities of family-owned businesses. I’m the youngest of three siblings and have spent the last several years balancing the fine line between family relationships and business success. This juggling act has taken more time and effort than I could have expected before we transitioned ownership from my father, but we chose family first. The success of the business is paramount to treating one another fairly, professionally, and with love and is vitally important when things get heated.
I created my personal brand called “$econd Generation” to share experiences, learn from one another, and help others thrive in order to beat the odds of failure and create amazing family businesses together.
We are the backbone of America.
Keep Growing, Vincent Finaldi