Author Archives: craigaronoff

WITHOUT WORK, THINGS DON’T WORK

  A friend asked about the impact of wealth on the children of families owning significant assets.  What’s the secret, he asked, to helping such children achieve reasonably well-adjusted adulthood?  Indeed, I was reminded of one client who shared his … Continue reading

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Seven Timeless Principles for Effective Leaders

Part biography, part “how to” management book, and part philosophical tract, Joel Manby’s excellent new book, Love Works, is inspiring, readable and useful.  Subtitled “Seven Timeless Principles for Effective Leaders,” Manby uses his experience as CEO of Herschend Family Entertainment, … Continue reading

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More Data Says Private Companies Are Better

A recent article in Forbes magazine made the following points:  stocks listed on U.S. stock exchanges have declined from 7400 to 3600 in the past 15 years;  public companies earn less than half of business profits in the U.S. economy … Continue reading

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Is Business Longevity the Goal for Enterprising Families?

In a static or relatively stable socio-economic system, the ability to identify, sustain, and defend a niche in the marketplace creates tremendous value to pass from generation to generation.  When the socio-economic system is in ever accelerating flux, creativity and … Continue reading

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Encouragement for Board Chair’s and CEO’s

The Chairmen’s Forum, a group of experienced chairman from major corporations, has stepped up its effort to encourage the separation of the roles of board chair and CEO.  The group endorses the appointment of  independent chairmen .  Companies in the … Continue reading

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Effective Leadership Preparation

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley describing her preparation for effective leadership:  “I grew up in a family business where I started doing the books for them when I was 13.  I had my first corporate audit at 15.”

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IT’S NOT JUST FAMILY SUCCESSORS THAT FIND IT TOUGH TO FOLLOW FOUNDERS

Research pointing to the fact that family businesses outperform their non-family peers have also shown that performance in subsequent generations of family businesses does not tend to be as strong as it is in the founder generation.  In a Forbes … Continue reading

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No Reason for Gratuitous Criticism of Family Business

This from the most recent Bloomberg Business Week: “Last year revenue at the company grew 12 percent, to a record $9.7 billion, and while the Great Recession slowed rivals Neiman Marcus and Saks, Nordstrom gained market share.  Nordstrom, it seems, … Continue reading

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How Big Can a Family Business Be?

The family of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton continue to be a powerful force in that business.  Son Robson Walton continues as board chairman of the $190,000,000,000 annual sales company.  When Sam Walton died nearly 20 years ago, the family retained … Continue reading

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In the Footsteps of Giants

I just finished reading a delightful family business biography:  Half Luck and Half Brains: The Kemmons Wilson Holiday Inn Story.  A classic “rags-to-riches” saga, Kemmons’ father died when he was nine months old leaving his mother to raise him by … Continue reading

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