• Service: Enterprise, Family business
  • Type: Business and industry issue, Video
  • Date: 11/29/2013
  • Length: Minutes

The Family Constitution [video] 

Family constitution
Many family companies are reluctant to address governance structures, as there are often conflicting dynamics which are at odds with the characteristics and desires of individual family members.

Successful governance of the family business can help to maintain the aspirations and expectations of the family though, by managing the business and family’s wealth and ensuring a commitment to high standards.

Implementing a Family Constitution needs to be approached sensitively and strategically though, ending with a comprehensive mission statement on the framework by which the family’s affairs will be governed. The Family Constitution should succinctly reflect the wishes of key senior family members and be updated and reviewed periodically to ensure that it remains effective.

The Family Constitution should achieve the following:

  • set out the key practices which family members are expected to adhere to i.e. set boundaries to avoid
  • conflictclearly express the expectations of individuals’ roles
  • provide certainty as to what resources and support is available to family members
  • clarity on leadership alongside respect and recognition of individual contributions to the success and existence of the family business
  • clear communication channels and an understanding of individual roles
  • a balance drawn between family values and commercial needs.

Alain Berthoud

Alain Berthoud
Alain Berthoud, certified Public Accountant since 1992, has been working for many years with Family Businesses before joining KPMG as a Partner.

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