2.

The Power of Family Ownership

Unlike public companies, in which market forces dictate nearly all decisions, family business owners get to write their own rules, fundamentally shaping not just the business but the family as well. Owners define success for the company. They decide who leads it, whether to stay private or go public, and how much of the profits are kept in the business or distributed.

Whether you are an owner, an in-law, a nonfamily manager, or a competitor, you can’t truly know what is going on in a family business until you appreciate the power of family ownership. In this chapter, we will explain this power—which can be used to destroy your family business or sustain it for generations. We describe the five critical rights ...

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