How do family businesses keep their founders’ entrepreneurial spirt alive and continue to grow from decade to decade and generation to generation? What’s the secret to their staying power and their ability to stay ahead of competitors? The STEP Project Global Consortium and KPMG Private Enterprise set out to find the answers. We wanted to understand how family businesses continue to be such regenerative powerhouses that not only flourish in good times, but also manage to respond positively to change during times of disruption.
Our exploration began with an in-depth survey of 2,439 family business leaders across the world between September and November 2021. After a detailed academic analysis of the survey data, we moderated a series of roundtable discussions in February 2022 with family business CEOs along with family business academics and professional advisers. The discussions focused on the factors and challenges that are influencing the continuous renewal and performance of family businesses. We heard how their regenerative power begins simply enough — with the founders’ entrepreneurial ambition to turn an inspiring vision into a practical reality.
We believe the regenerative capability of family businesses is their superpower. And there are many lessons in their experiences to guide you in continuing to build on the strengths that already exist in your family business along with practical actions that you might consider to fill some potential gaps.
As a starting point, we encourage you to consider the factors that are influencing the regenerative power and future performance of your family business:
The strength of your firm’s entrepreneurial orientation is one of the most important keys for unlocking the ability of your family business to continuously adapt, innovate and grow. How would you score your company’s current level of entrepreneurialism?
Are next-generation family members being given opportunities to take risks and make judgments on their own?
There is evidence that next-generation leaders, particularly young women, are digitally savvy. Have you recognized that capability in your company?
Does your family have a strong emotional attachment to your business?
Are family members growing up in a stewardship climate to pass along the purpose and values of the family and the business?
Is it time to revitalize the leadership approach in your business to keep it fit for the times?