Student authentication

Is it the first time you are entering this system?
Use the following link to activate your id and create your password.
»  Create / Recover Password



Updated A.Y. 2022-2023


(Prof. Luca Gnan)

Teaching Staff responsible for the course:

Prof. Luca Gnan

E-mail: luca.gnan@uniroma2.it

Availability: Contact via e-mail

Prof.ssa Giulia Flamini

E-mail: giulia.flamini@uniroma2.it

Availability: Contact via e-mail

We are committed to making this course a valuable learning experience for you. After the first month, we will spend part of a class session evaluating our progress, and we will make any necessary changes to keep us on track. However, we welcome your feedback at any time in the semester. It is easiest to reach us by e-mail or during office hours, but we are always happy to set up an appointment. Additionally, if you have a disability that requires unique accommodation, please let us know ASAP so that we can be helpful to you.

E-mails, Office Hours & Feedback on Assignments

We endeavor to answer e-mails within one day. If you have not heard from us within that time, please resend the e-mail. Grades & comments will be posted online in the materials section of the course website. We will be happy to give feedback and discuss assignments after all grading is complete for a specific task. Office hours are scheduled by e-mail request.

We may answer questions of assignment clarification in class and via e-mails to benefit the entire class. We may also give extra grades (see below Team Project) during the course that, while generally designed to support learning in the course, will also help your participation grade. These are pass/fail and do not include comments.

Pre-requisites for the Course:


Course Description and Learning Objectives

Family businesses show distinct core competencies that can result in unique competitive advantages. They take a long-run view of the business—across generations, rather than publicly traded quarterly reports. Their capital can be very patient, and owners will sacrifice their salaries to make payroll. They are an integral part of their communities, unlike publicly traded counterparts that might abandon a community at the blink of a budget. They can engender a great deal of loyalty on the part of employees, and the existence of family may reduce agency problems.

Family Businesses also face challenges that threaten their continuity. The challenges are primarily the result of issues presented by the interaction of family, management, and ownership—particularly where the family wishes to perpetuate its influence and/or control from generation to generation. Family firms seem to be as agile in one generation as they are fragile across generations.

Family businesses start with an owner-managed first generation (usually an entrepreneur). The next generation—G2—is the sibling generation, and G3 is the cousin era. The probability of passing the company to the next generation diminishes significantly, with fewer than half making it to G2 and only about less than 15% making it to G3. So, despite family benefits, there can be some significant issues.

The course explores and analyzes the continuity challenges of a family business and its best management practices. This course focuses on pragmatic, action-oriented management, governance, finance, and family/business leadership skills.

Attention is devoted to evaluating family firms and their growth options to provide a roadmap for analyzing how family ownership, control, and management affect performances and how family firms can create and ensure more value through generations.

The course presents seven different sections:

· SECTION 1: Family firms: prevalence and relevance

· SECTION 2: Governance in the family firm

· SECTION 3: Strategic management in the family firm

· SECTION 4: Succession in the family firm

· SECTION 5: Change and transgenerational value creation

· SECTION 6: Interpersonal relationships and conflict in the family firm

· SECTION 7: Financial management in the family firm

The course addresses established family businesses' governance, management, and finance. It examines succession, values, life cycles, business and marketing strategies, conflict resolution, communications, legal, and financial aspects, estate planning, management, philanthropy, and other topics that uniquely touch family business governance, management, and finance. It will convey the characteristics that differentiate family businesses from other businesses.

One of the features, which make this course unique and particularly modern, is a part of Section 7: Financial management in the family firm, dedicated to the mysterious and fascinating world of the family office. This is the little-known but key professional practice of advising entire families-in-business, frequently large, diversified, and with wide ramifications, about the complete spectrum of activities necessary to ensure that wealth is created, preserved, transmitted, and spread across the enlarged family community. These services range from asset allocation to risk management, education, efficient tax structuring, corporate finance, corporate governance, intra-, inter-generational transmission, philanthropy, etc. Given the enormous amount of wealth and power, this phenomenon is increasingly important and has attracted some focus, particularly on the best graduate students and professional talents.

Upon completion of this course, students should understand:

  1. The unique assets and vulnerabilities of family enterprises.
  2. The role of the CEO in governance, management, and the transfer of power.
  3. The relationship between the role of the board, the family council, and top management in providing effective governance for family business continuity.
  4. Key family dynamics.
  5. The relevance for families to manage collectively wealth created in professional ways,

and be able to:

  1. Identify the various stakeholders and the role of trust among family members and their impact on succession and continuity.
  2. Discuss the developmental needs and challenges of next-generation leaders.
  3. Analyze the effect of estate taxes on ownership transfer across generations of family business owners and the implications of ownership structures on the competitive advantages of family businesses.
  4. Explain the importance of strategic planning to family business continuity.
  5. Explore the critical role and challenges that nonfamily managers play in family-owned operations.
  6. Analyze the impact of family culture, communication, conflict, and unity and explore their interaction effects on the family business.
  7. Assess whether they want to seek employment in family businesses as key employees/managers or in a professional advisory role.

Teaching methods

Lessons will be characterized by the transfer of knowledge and the strong interaction within the classroom; there are analyses of situations, problems, and business cases to facilitate participants in learning.

Regular attending students are strongly recommended to participate in all the lectures, preparations, and presentations of the business cases.

This course uses readings, lectures, exercises, cases, individual and team assignments, and class discussions to meet its goals. Case assignments provide an important foundation for class discussion and must be completed before each session. The due dates for all cases and other assignments are listed in the class schedule at the end of the syllabus. Lectures will highlight key points and provide additional information to supplement the readings. Cases will allow you to apply what you have learned to real-world issues and scenarios. Because each of you brings unique perspectives and experiences to the class, participation in class discussions and activities is essential to your learning and other class members. To further enrich your learning, you will also be matched with an MScBA Teaching Assistant.


Zellweger, T. Managing the Family Business: Theory and Practice, Edward Elgar Publishing, 2017: ISBN: 9781783470709


During the course, we will discuss 10 cases:

1. More than a move to Mexico (Chapter 4: Zellweger, pages: 43-45)

2. Beretti Holdings—More than a retirement decision (Chapter 5: Zellweger, pages: 109-112)

3. Henkel’s Genthin plant (Chapter 6: Zellweger, page: 125)

4. Branding and CSR at HiPP (Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 165-166)

5. Managing paradoxes (Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 193-194)

6. Bernet's choice—Valuation, emotional value, family discount and fair distribution of assets within the family (Chapter 7: Zellweger, pages: 306-307)

7. Transgenerational value creation at Ahlstrom (Finland) (Chapter 8: Zellweger, pages: 361-363)

8. Conflict in the Solomon family (Chapter 10: Zellweger, pages: 488-491)

9. Tom's world (Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 422-424)

(the following case from Harvard Business School Publishing. You need to register to download the cases at the following link: https://hbr.org, then download the case at the indicated link)

10. Medco Energi Internasional

Additional References

- Poza, E. J., "Family Business", First Edition. Mason, OH: Thomson South-Western, 2004.

- Gnan, L. and Montemerlo, D., (2006), "Family-firm relationship in Italian SMEs: ownership and governance issues in a double-fold theoretical perspective", in P. Z. Poutziouris P., Smyrnios, K. X., and Klein, S. B., "Handbook of research on family business", Edward Elgar Publishing.

- Zattoni, A., Gnan, L., Huse, M., (2012) , "Does Family Involvement Influence Firm Performance? Exploring the Mediating Effects of Board Processes and Tasks", Journal Of Management, ISSN: 0149-2063, DOI: 10.1177/0149206312463936

- Gnan, L. and Songini, L., (2015), "Family involvement and agency cost control mechanisms in family small and medium-sized enterprises", Journal Of Small Business Management, vol. 53, p. 748-779, ISSN: 0047-2778, DOI: 10.1111/jsbm.12085

- Gnan, L., Montemerlo, D., Huse, M. (2015), "Governance systems in family SMEs: the substitution effects between family councils and corporate governance mechanisms", Journal of Small Business Management, p. 1-27, ISSN: 1540-627X, DOI: 10.1111/jsbm.12070

- Gnan, L., Montemerlo, D., Schulze, W., Corbetta, G., (2008), “Governance Structures in Italian Family SMEs” In: (a cura di): Comacchio A. and Pontiggia A., “L'organizzazione fa la differenza”, Roma: Carocci Editore, ISBN: 9788843045587

- Gnan, L. and Montemerlo, D., (2007), "Family-firm relationship in Italian SMEs: ownership and governance issues in a double-fold theoretical perspective" In: "Handbook of research on family business", Elgar, ISBN: 978-1845424107

- Songini, L., Gnan, L., Morelli, C., Vola, P., (2015), "The why and how of managerialization of family businesses: evidences from Italy", Piccola Impresa / Small Business, vol 1, DOI: 10.14596/pisb.179, pp 85-117

- Songini, L., Gnan, L., Malmi, T (2013), "The role and impact of accounting in family business", Journal of Family Business Strategy, vol. 4, p. 71-83, ISSN: 1877-8585, DOI: 10.1016/j.jfbs.2013.04.002

- Gnan, L., Songini, L., (2014), "The glass ceiling in SMEs and its impact on firm managerialisation: a comparison between family and nonfamily SMEs", International Journal of Business Governance And Ethics, vol. 9, ISSN: 1477-9048

- de Pedys, V. and Antonelli, A,. (2008) "Family office for family business", Oxford management Publishing, ISBN 978-1-906728-01-4

- Poutziouris, P., (2001) "Understanding family firms", in (Ed.) Adam, J., Institute of Directors, "The Growing Business Handbook", London: Kogan Page, Chapter 6.3: pp. 9-15, 4th edition, ISBN 074943600X

- Levin, R. and Travis, V., (1987), "Small company finance: what the books don't say", Harvard Business Review, nov-dec: 87608

- Villalonga, B. and Amit, R., (2005), "How do family ownership, control and management affect firm value", Journal of financial economics, 80: 385-417

- Wilson, R., (2013), "The family office Report", FamilyOfficesGroup.com

- Amit, R. and Perl, R., (2012) "2012 Family Governance Report", Wharton Global family Alliance, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

- Amit, R. and Lichtenstein, H., (2010), "Benchmarking the Single Family Office" Wharton Global Family Alliance, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

Suggested videos

1. Introductory video: 4 Lessons from the Best Family Businesses


2. Three circle model: importance of governance, setting goals, holistic leadership and caring for the interests of the family


3. The unique strengths and weaknesses of family businesses today, contrasting it with the humble mom-and-pop store the term usually brings to mind


4. The topic of Building a Family Business That Lasts and provides viewers with four key points to walk away with


5. The key attention points and delicacies involved in preparing and transferring a business to the next generation


6. Family Business Governance: Family Constitution


7. Family-owned companies need to be run with emotional, as well as professional leadership


8. Toward a theory of how some family firms nurture transgenerational entrepreneurship


9. Family Business Longevity


10. 5 Ways For Private Equity Firms to Raise Capital From Family Offices


11. Address the challenges faced by family businesses


12. Conflict in the Family Business


13. Stories of Wasteful Conflict in Family Businesses


Case Discussions

Regular attending students are expected to be fully engaged in the entire learning process. Regular attending students are expected to:

1) prepare the assigned readings of the cases before each class.

2) prepare as a group work a PowerPoint presentation on the case based on the specific assignment.

3) come to class ready to participate and discuss to enhance the individual's learning and the class.

On the course website, students find the relative assignment for each case. Please carefully read the questions before the session and use them for preparing the PowerPoint presentation.

Each student will be involved in the class discussion on the cases and tie the assigned reading for the session. The objective is to bring all class members into the debate. The cases are designed to integrate the concepts from the case into the context of the course. The preparation and the discussion of the cases do not exclude the study of the theoretical concepts helpful in discussing the cases themselves and the passing of the course exam.

With the cases' discussions in the CLASSROOM, each student will develop:

1. The ability to set the parameters for the problem (key concepts from the case).

2. A depth of knowledge about the case subject (understanding of material, excellent response to the observations of others).

3. The ability to tie in the case with other course concepts.

4. The ability to get others involved in the discussion.

To adequately discuss the cases, students do:

· Be prepared with facts and specific quotes from the case.

· Be prepared to comment, ask a question, or develop ideas about the case.

During the discussion, students do:

· Take a position on a question or a point.

  • Ask clarifying questions.

· Help keep the discussion moving and on track.

· Help draw others into the discussion.

· Integrate theories and content from other cases.

During the discussion, students do not:

· Be unprepared and show your lack of knowledge.

  • Monopolize the discussion.
  • Make irrelevant comments.

· Be insensitive to others' desire to speak or to their opinions.

All the regular attending students are kindly invited to build up workgroups (MINIMUM 3 PERSONS – MAXIMUM 5 PERSONS). Each workgroup should prepare a PowerPoint presentation for each case. In the first slide, the names of the students belonging to the group should be reported.

The structure of the presentation should follow the following outline:

  1. One or more introductory slides aimed at describing/reporting the story, the characters, and all the necessary elements to define the context and boundaries of the case clearly.
  2. One slide mentioning the questions of the assignment and underlining the learning goals of the case.
  3. One or more slides reporting the answers to each question of the assignment.
  4. One or more slides reporting the final remarks on the case.
  5. One closing slide about the lessons learned after the group discussion of the case.

How to prepare the PowerPoint presentation of the case?

Introduction – short presentation of the case, brief description of the problems and situations that should be coped with the discussion.

Diagnosis – Problem setting of the context and the situation. Description of the main facts and elements connected with the concepts and models of Family Business. What went wrong, and which actions/situations were right? Which elements could be considered for the diagnosis?

Solution – Students should provide a possible answer to questions/problems related to the case and a viable and clear indication of how to approach the situation and solve it. The entire proposal should represent a consistent action plan regarding behaviors and expected results.

Conclusions – Conclusions should not be longer than 300-500 words and should describe how the situation and the problem characterized the case, how Family Business schemata might help solve the case, and what the proposed solution might generate in terms of organizational consequences.

Lessons learned – At the end of the presentation elements/suggestions/advice that we "take home" from the case discussion should be identified and reported.

NOTE: During the case discussion, students should explicitly address the context and the different situations with concepts related to Family Business and with models and theories of this course.

Case Discussions' Class Participation

The best way to learn, especially about FB, is to participate in your education actively. "Participation" is defined as quality contributions to class discussion and exercises in this class. There are four pre-requisites for successful participation:

  1. Be here on time and prepared. You cannot contribute much to class discussion if you are not here. If you need to miss class for a predictable reason (e.g., job interview, athletic competition), please notify us at least 24 hours in advance so that we can make arrangements for any in-class exercises and so that you can obtain the materials distributed during the class. Of course, we realize that in some cases, unforeseeable emergencies arise. Although we will not directly penalize you for non-attendance, be aware that multiple absences will indirectly hurt you by preventing you from participating in class, thereby lowering your participation grade. To contribute to class discussion, you must come to class having carefully prepared all assignments (i.e., readings, cases, exercises).
  2. Be brave. Everyone in this class is smart, engaging, and has unique life experiences. You will get the most out of this course if you ask questions, voice opinions, and express your thoughts to one another. If you feel uncomfortable talking in class, please send me an e-mail or set up an appointment to talk with me early in the semester. We will do everything to accommodate your circumstances, but we can only do so if they are brought to our attention.
  3. Be courteous. Successful participation includes treating your classmates respectfully and professionally. Listen carefully to the comments and questions that your classmates voice. You may learn something new from their perspectives, and you will be able to avoid merely repeating something that another classmate has said earlier in the discussion. Also, it is perfectly acceptable for you to voice disagreement with an opinion provided by another student. The open debate often leads to the most thoughtful and informative class discussions. However, please express your argument in a kind and considerate manner.
  4. Be engaged. This class is "unplugged." Once class starts, all electronics (e.g., computers, cell phones, tablets, etc.) should be turned off and put away. If you need to use a device because of a language or disability issue, you need to secure permission at the beginning of the class. The misuse of an electronic device (e.g., surfing the web or texting) will adversely affect your grade.

To facilitate the visioning of its PowerPoint presentation in the classroom, each workgroup should take a personal computer with PowerPoint installed and an available VGA connection.

By 8 pm of the day before the case discussion, all regular attending students should send to the Course's Instructors, attaching the case presentation prepared. ONLY STUDENTS WHO HAD SUBMITTED ALL THE CASE PRESENTATIONS ON TIME WILL BE CONSIDERED REGULAR ATTENDING STUDENTS TO THE 1st EXAM AFTER THE COURSE.

Policy for Late Assignments

As in the business world, work must be received on time to receive full credit. If you are late on an assignment, your access to the 1st exam after the course will be compromised. You are always welcome to hand in an assignment before its due date if you know that you will be busy as the due date approaches. If you think that you will not complete an assignment by the stated due date, please speak with us in advance to make alternative arrangements. Our policy on late assignments will depend on the specific circumstances surrounding the problem and thus may differ from student to student. Providing advance notice about a late assignment will minimize the penalty you receive on that assignment but does not guarantee that there will be no penalty for turning the assignment in late.

Other learning sources

Slides and other materials will be available on the course website.



Because of the concentrated nature of the MScBA program, attendance in class is crucial.

Not regular attending students will be required to prepare for the exam ALL the chapters of the textbook Zellweger, T. Managing the Family Business: Theory and Practice, Edward Elgar Publishing, 2017: ISBN: 9781783470709 and ALL the cases discussed in the classroom.

NOTE: Attendance of the first class session is mandatory. Important information about the course and the instructor's expectations are given during the first session. If you know that you will have to be absent for one session, please contact your instructor to ensure that absence from a session is acceptable.


The 1st exam after the course is a written exam (the 1st), while all the other exams will be oral.

In the case of a written exam, the duration is about 3-4 hours, and it includes:

a) Case discussion - You may be given a case study to which some questions may pertain to lead the discussion. As you respond to the questions, please use specific content and theories (use names to identify theories and models) as the basis of your analysis. You will not receive credit for your personal opinions unless backed by theory, lecture, and/or text material. Also, describe how the content/theory applies to the situation. Your answers will be evaluated based on both quantity and quality. Answers that are more complete and demonstrate a higher understanding and analysis will receive more points.

b) Some questions directly connected to the course textbook – The questions could be open, closed (multiple choice), or both. You may be asked to discuss the models and the theories presented during the course. You will be asked to interpret some real incidents and focus on specific theoretical issues.

1st exam after the course participation and exam grades registering on the booklet

Only regular attending students (with the 85% of attendance) that have delivered ALL the cases to the Instructors on time take the 1 st exam after the course with a format explicitly dedicated to them.

Only regular registered students on the DELPHI System will be allowed to register their grades.

The 1st exam grades will be registered after the official exam date; Teachers will communicate that date. It is compulsory to come on that exam date to record the grade on the Delphi and the booklet.

Team Project

The project aims to allow your team to apply what has been learned in the course (through course lectures, readings, and case discussions) to problems in a family firm of your team's choice.

Class members, regular attending students, will work in teams of four (4) people.

To the Team Project, regular attending students will be allowed to achieve a -3/+3 extra points to the final grade of the 1st exam after the course. Only regular attending students taking the 1 st exam after the course will be accepted for the Team Project.

Your team should identify a family firm to study (Please, no student groups).

Your team is to gather information from people in the family firm through direct contact. You may supplement this information with data from the media, the organization's literature, and other secondary sources. You should identify a relatively recent problem to analyze (i.e., this should not be a historical account of a problem and the company's solution). You should focus your analysis by applying the concepts from the course. While it is acceptable to incorporate several concepts from the course, please aim for depth rather than breadth regarding course concepts. Your goal is to diagnose the mechanisms causing the organization's problem or issue of concern. Initially, you may notice many symptoms (for instance, a crisis after the succession, seemingly an unhealthy family culture, low family members' commitment and involvement, governance issues, etc.), but your task is to get to the underlying reason for these symptoms. And beware, sometimes the initial symptoms we think we see are not what they appear to be.

There are three broad goals for this assignment:

1. One goal of this assignment is obviously to take the initiative to make a positive contribution to a family firm.

2. Another primary goal is to allow you to learn more about family businesses firsthand and use your critical thinking and reflection skills to link your experience with this family firm to your learning concerning family business theories.

3. The final goal is to provide a forum for you to hone your team member and leader skills and reflect on the learning gained from this team experience. Each team will make a presentation and write a paper that describes what you did for the family firm, what you learned about the family business, and what you learned about working on a team.

Your team should answer the following questions in the assignments detailed below to meet these broad goals.

a) What are the issues or problems facing the family firm?

b) How can Course concepts be applied to understand why this problem is occurring?

c) What recommendations can you offer to help improve the family business functioning?

Deliverables of the Team Project:

1. The project proposal is due to the Instructors by the 9th session of the course by 5 pm. It should include:

a) the names of your group members

b) your team name

c) the name of the organization

d) the name, contact information, and level of your contact person

e) the method you will use to gain access to the organization

f) a brief description (one paragraph) of the organization's problem.

2. Your written project is due to the Instructors by the 18th session of the course by 5 pm .

It should contain a maximum of 15 double-spaced pages (1 cm margins, 12 point font). You will be penalized significantly for exceeding this limit. The limit does not include appendices, which you are free to use to provide charts, figures, or other background material not necessary in the main body of your analysis. However, appendices that are not directly referenced in the main text will not be read. LATE PROJECT WRITE-UPS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

This written project should summarize what you did for/within the organization, what you have learned about organizational behavior, and what you have learned about working on a team.

Grading of the Team Project:

Your group project will be evaluated on the following criteria:

a. Problem definition: How well (i.e., thoroughly and concisely) describe the organizational context, the relevant parties, and the factors that are important to the problem?

b. Accurate and thorough use of course concepts.

c. Integration of course concepts with information about the company and problem, i.e., how well do you integrate course concepts with details about the problem to illuminate the problem in a way that leads to solutions?

d. The extent to which recommendations are consistent with analysis.

e. Quality of written analysis.


Analytical Syllabus








Family firms: prevalence and relevance


Introduction of the Course

(Chapter 1: Zellweger, pages: 1-3)

1. Thematic focus

2. Intended audience

3. Structure and pedagogical tools

Defining the family business

(Chapter 2: Zellweger, pages: 4-22)

1. The distinction between family and nonfamily firms

2. Defining family business by type of family involvement

3. Circle models of family influence

4. Family firm identity

5. Family business definition




Prevalence and economic contribution of family firms around the globe

(Chapter 3: Zellweger, pages: 24-33)

1. Prevalence of family firms worldwide

2. Economic contribution of family firms

3. Institutional setting and the prevalence of family firms

Strengths and weaknesses of family firms

(Chapter 4: Zellweger, pages: 36-42)

1. Typical strengths of family firms

2. Typical weaknesses of family firms

3. Bivalent attributes of family firm characteristics

CASE STUDY: More than a move to Mexico

(Chapter 4: Zellweger, pages: 43-45)

Lecture and Case



Governance in the family firm


Governance in the family firm: premises, corporate and ownership governance

(Chapter 5: Zellweger, pages: 46-72)

1. Why do family firms need governance?

2. Typical governance constellations in family firms

3. Performance implications of governance constellations

4. Untangling corporate, ownership, family governance

5. Corporate governance

6. Ownership governance




Governance in the family firm: family governance

(Chapter 5: Zellweger, pages: 73-105)

1. Family governance

2. Governance documents: code of conduct and family charter

3. Governance bodies: family assembly and family council

4. Integrated governance in family firms

CASE STUDY: Beretti Holdings—More than a retirement decision

(Chapter 5: Zellweger, pages: 109-112)

Lecture and Case



Strategic management in the family firm


Strategic management in the family business: competitive advantages and the agency perspective

(Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 116-134)

1. Strategic decision making in family firms

2. Conceptualizing the competitive advantage of family firms

3. The agency perspective

CASE STUDY: Henkel's Genthin plant

(Chapter 6: Zellweger, page: 125)

Lecture and Case



Strategic management in the family business: RBV and OI perspectives

(Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 137-163)

1. The resource-based perspective

2. The organizational identity perspective

CASE STUDY: Branding and CSR at HiPP

(Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 165-166)

Lecture and Case



Strategic management in the family business: institutional and paradox perspectives

(Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 167-194)

1. The institutional perspective

2. The paradox perspective

3. Generic strategies for family firms

4. Tools for strategic management in family firms

CASE STUDY: Managing paradoxes

(Chapter 6: Zellweger, pages: 193-194)

Lecture and Case



Succession in the family firm


Succession in the family firm: goals and processual issues

(Chapter 7: Zellweger, pages: 203-234)

1. Succession options

2. Opportunities and challenges of succession options

3. Significance of succession options

4. Declining relevance of infra-family succession

5. Sources of complexity in family business succession

6. Structuring the succession process: succession framework

7. Clarifying goals and priorities




Succession in the family firm: change strategy and who is in charge of the change

(Chapter 7: Zellweger, pages: 240-254)

1. Reviewing the firm's strategy

2. Planning the transition of responsibilities




Succession in the family firm: value, finance, legal, and tax issues

(Chapter 7: Zellweger, pages: 258-305)

1. Valuing the firm

2. Financing the succession

3. Defining the legal and tax setup

CASE STUDY: Bernet's choice—Valuation, emotional value, family discount and fair distribution of assets within the family

(Chapter 7: Zellweger, pages: 306-307)

Lecture and Case



Change and transgenerational value creation


Change and transgenerational value creation

(Chapter 8: Zellweger, pages: 311-356)

1. Change and adaptation in family firms

2. Longevity of family firms

3. Transgenerational value creation in family firms

CASE STUDY: Transgenerational value creation at Ahlstrom (Finland)

(Chapter 8: Zellweger, pages: 361-363)

Lecture and Case



Interpersonal relationships and conflict in the family firm


Interpersonal relationships and conflict in the family firm: social issues, family values, and perceptions

(Chapter 10: Zellweger, pages: 428-466)

1. The social structure of the family

2. Trends in the social structure of the family

3. International variance in family values

4. Understanding interpersonal dynamics in the family firm: a systemic view

5. Justice perceptions




Interpersonal relationships and conflict in the family firm: managing conflicts

(Chapter 10: Zellweger, pages: 468-487)

1. Why family firms are fertile contexts for conflict

2. Types of conflict

3. Conflict dynamics

4. Conflict-management styles

5. Communication strategies

6. How to behave in the face of conflict

CASE STUDY: Conflict in the Solomon family

(Chapter 10: Zellweger, pages: 488-491)

Lecture and Case



Financial management in the family firm


Financial management in the family firm: differences with no family firms

(Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 368-379)

1. Why finance is different for family firms

2. Family equity as a distinct asset class

3. Performance of family firms: a short review of the evidence

4. Risk taking in family firms




Financial management in the family firm: financial tools

(Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 380-400)

1. Debt financing

2. Equity financing

3. Leverage

4. Value management

5. Key financial indicators

6. Dilemmas in the financial management of family firms




Financial management in the family firm: financial sustainability

(Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 402-407)

1. Principles for the sustainable financial management of family firms

2. The role of the CFO in family firms

CASE STUDY: Tom's world

(Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 422-424)

Lecture and Case



Financial management in the family firm: compensations

(Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 407-411)

1. Management compensation in family firms

CASE STUDY: Medco Energi Internasional

(HBS 9-207-021)

Lecture and Case



Financial management in the family firm: family offices

(Chapter 9: Zellweger, pages: 412-417 and Chapter 5: Zellweger, pages: 83-89)

1. The responsible shareholder in the family firm

2. Wealth governance