How to start a family business
Running a business with your family definitely has its pros and
cons. If you're contemplating starting up with a relative, this
guide will help you make it a profitable and happy one.
- Why run a family business?
- Good family businesses
- Making it work
- Dealing with conflict
Why run a family business?
Running a family business can be rewarding, you just need to get
your ingredients right. Starting a family-run business means you'll
already know who you're employing and know how to get along with
them. It will also inspire younger members of the family to get
involved and play a part if they can see you're building a future
- Make sure you get your ingredients right
- You'll know who you're working with
- Create good prospects for younger members of the family
Good family businesses
While most business can easily be run by families, certain types
are better suited. Restaurants, newsagents, shops and B&Bs all
lend themselves well to being family run. The one you
choose may depend entirely on skills and experience.
- Some businesses are well suited to a family-based
- Consider your experience and skills
Making it work
While you may get on well with your brother at a family get
together, running a business and working together every day could
be a different kettle of fish. It's essential you choose the right
family members: think about ones with a similar outlook on
life who will be easy to work with. Make sure you also consider
which skills each of you can bring to the team. Be clear about the
role everyone plays; this will ensure everyone knows what they're
supposed to be doing.
- Make sure you're happy to see your relatives every day
- Think about different skillsets
- Be clear on roles
Dealing with conflict
Running a business can make for heated discussions, especially
in times of stress. This is even more heightened in a family
business. Try to avoid having heated discussions and to prevent
emotions running high, make sure you have rules in place which
everyone adheres to.
- Avoid emotions boiling over by keeping a cool head.
- Discuss controversial issues calmly
- Have a set of rules for dealing with arguments
Deciding who will be your successor in a family business can be
a tricky one. It's a decision you're unlikely to make in any other
type of business, so it's essential you go through your options.
It's natural to want to pass your business on to your children or
close relatives but they may not be the best ones to succeed
you and you could risk upsetting non-family staff by overlooking
them. A family member will be a much more worthy successor if they
have already worked for the business and shown potential.
- Think carefully about whether family members are right to take
over the business.
- If you decide to let a non-family member of staff take over
explain why to avoid upset
- Make sure staff are aware of the genuine reason for handing the
reins to a family member
Smarta offers a company registration service powered by the
National Business Register. You can search for available
names then register a business name, set up a company and register
a trademark with us. You will receive a professional binder with
all your official documents via post within 3 days.
Go to our company registration tool here: Company registration tool
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