Jean Meeks-Koch, Ph.D., MAcc, CEO and Founder of Positively People, LLC, was interviewed by host Adam Torres on the Mission Matter Money podcast.
Jean Meeks-Koch, Ph.D., MAcc, was interviewed by host Adam Torres on the Mission Matter Money podcast.
Beverly Hills, April 08, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Multigenerational family businesses play an important role in economies around the world, and Jean Meeks-Koch talks here about how Positively People provides guidance and care to those who lead them.
Listen to Jean Meeks-Koch’s full interview with Adam Torres on the Mission Matters Money Podcast.
How did you get started on the path to entrepreneurship?
Dr. Meeks-Koch says her journey to entrepreneurship began when her late husband founded a multi-million dollar construction company. After his death, she obtained her doctorate. and transitioned into academia and consulting. His first consulting client was a nursery run by a multi-generational family; this, she says, led directly to her next entrepreneurial venture.
The consulting firm primarily focused on managing large corporations and government institutions, but after meeting the multi-generational business that served as her turning point, she launched Positively People and became a senior consultant at Family Business Consulting Group. (FBCG), a 30 year collaboration of family business consultants and practitioners, sharing thoughts, ideas and intellectual property.
Discuss with us the strengths and challenges of multigenerational businesses.
A multi-generational business, Meeks-Koch explains, is one in which the founder or founders intend to involve their siblings or children in its management, extending its legacy by expanding its reach or creating subsequent businesses from of the original.
As such, founders and their families often face the challenge of vision alignment. “Therefore, we look at family businesses in a three-circle model, where we note why they are unique, how the family impacts the operating business, and how the family impacts governance,” explains- she.
Family governance is a unique aspect of family businesses, she notes. When a company focuses on governance and creates systems, structures, protocols and policies that everyone agrees to, sustainability can be maintained. It is essential to conduct this type of planning as early as possible in order to achieve and maintain success, she advises: it is important to begin the process of creating a family business with as many resources at your layout as possible.
“Your problem is continuity in the family business,” she says, and points out that potential founders should “seek good resources, like reading family business magazines or joining universities with family business centers, before dipping your toes into a multi-generational family. business.”
The Importance of Third Generation Family Businesses
The involvement of a third generation in a family business is a crucial point, notes Meeks-Koch, because these heirs have less opportunity to spend time with the founding generation than the one that preceded it; they may not even live in the same household. On the bright side, she says, they can bring new interpretations and perspectives to the table to help the company maintain a certain modernity to support its long-term sustainability.
How does Positively People help its clients?
Positively People provides a platform for conversations about the differences in how each generation sees the future of business, helping them align their perspectives with a singular vision.
Within a large or extended family, the values within each nuclear family may differ slightly. “We create a safe and neutral environment to have discussions where all voices can be heard, which leads to defining the future,” says Meeks-Koch. “We’re stripping away the titles and focusing on getting you back to basics as part of the family.” The end goal is always to arrive at an effective family business continuity plan that actually works, resolving or even preventing conflicts and preparing the family business for business success.
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