Good morning, Paul!
A great business starts with a dream, a great vision, and then hard work and supreme execution determine how long that business will be around. Some last a few years, some last generations. This past weekend on WJR’s Business Biography show, I interviewed Dan Weingartz, who told us about how and why his family business is now in its fourth generation.
“We’ve worked hard. We’ve made some good decisions. We’re proud of what we’ve done, but if there’s one thing that I can say that I think we’ve done as well as anybody is managed the family piece of the family business. We really enjoy working with each other. We work together every day. We’re making decisions every day and then we’d go on vacation together and take all of our families and spend a week together. We really enjoy each other’s company.”
Sounds too good to be true. We asked the expert in family business succession, Norm Pappas, who wrote the book, “Passing the Bucks.” Norm, what does the Weingartz family do so well that has gotten this business into the fourth generation now so successfully?
“So Jeff, this has an unbelievable family, unbelievable business. Seventy percent of all businesses don’t get to the second generation. They are in the fourth generation. So first of all, they care about each other. Secondly, they have great communication. Thirdly, they were very clear on roles and responsibilities. They are unique because usually there’s family friction, you know, who’s going to be president, who’s doing what, what are the roles and responsibilities? “And they’ve done an excellent job and everybody finding their niche as to what they should be doing, and what’s their highest and best activity.”
Caring about each other, great communication, having clear roles and responsibilities. Want to launch your business to span four generations? Heed Norm’s advice, and do it like the Weingartz family does.
I’m Jeff Sloan, founder and CEO of startupnation.com, and that’s today’s Business Beat on the Great Voice of the Great Lakes, WJR.