The Future Begins With Intention

An intention to be a multi-generational family business is a requirement for becoming one.

At the Family Business Mastermind™ meeting this month, one of the participants spoke about the importance, to her, of preserving the hard work her parents put into growing the family business. She and brother were witnesses to the building of the business and it was a very large part of their childhood.

She mentioned that although she and her brother are pursuing careers elsewhere, she has come to see the significance and meaning the business has to each of the family members as a common bond between them, in addition to being a resource that has supported them financially.

She recognizes also that a transition will inevitably come about, and there has been very little discussion with her parents about the future. Her hope in attending the meeting was to hear of ways to preserve the integrity of the family and the business.

She was clear that her intention, through the glue of the family business, is to keep the family bonds strong between her and her brother, and to her parents who founded the business, and to extend them to future generations.

Her intention will supply the force to help her clarify and expand this vision. She conveyed that she will continue seeking answers. It was heartening to hear.


Accident and Intention

A young family business—first or second generation—in which the family’s next generation have begun to find their places, has reached a point where two possible paths to becoming a multi-generational enterprise emerge. The incumbent generation can either let things play out willy-nilly—without any plan as to what the business may look like in the future—and perhaps, quite by accident, become multigenerational. Or they can begin with intention.

Intention sets the stage and gets the wheels turning. The thinking starts with what’s possible for the family and the business under future generations.

Starting with intention the current leadership can set their sights on a long-term vision: wealth creation across generations, and a legacy. With this in mind they can then draw upon centuries of knowledge and documented experiences from those families that have created successful multigenerational family enterprises.

To pave a surer path to multi-generational success, start with intention.