Family businesses under pressure should look to grab a helping hand

A survey this week showed that one of the key issues for family businesses is that of communication, alongside achieving a work/life balance, which also showed to be a factor. The survey showed that 58 per cent of responding businesses were affected by communication issues and that 69 per cent were particularly concerned when it came to discussing important elements such as succession and shareholder agreements.

Whilst it was reported that 43 per cent of family businesses have only family members on the board, the dominant ‘leader’ of family businesses is still male, with 84 per cent being in a senior executive role, compared with just 16 per cent of females achieving that same status.

Working in a family business can be truly rewarding but this survey has shown it is not all plan sailing. What’s worse, it can be difficult for family members to separate work and family life and in some cases it can cause a real strain in both areas.

At Adams Moore, we have worked alongside many family owned and run businesses that have managed to get the balance right and make a real success of a family business that can provide a living for the current and future generations to come. It’s great to see some businesses that have a been thriving through many generations, still going in the present day.

Reducing the strain of some of the most time-intensive elements of running a business, by outsourcing to trusted providers where needed, can be an effective way of achieving a balance. Allowing those running the company to get on with the important business functions such as strategy planning for the future, or vital operations, can be facilitated through outsourcing financial or back-office activities that could make the whole business more efficient as a result.

For instance, when Adams Moore took over the financial direction of the business through the Board Support service for a family firm involved in the sterling silver industry, that had been thriving for almost a century, it allowed the company to truly focus on capitalising on some timely opportunities, knowing the financial monitoring, analysis, forecasting and planning was all in hand – and for a fixed fee so there was no worry of a meter running.

Whilst sometimes it might be considered unnecessary or indulgent to outsource functions a company believes they can handle themselves, quite often they may find that the valuable time can be focused elsewhere and conduct activities that can yield real bottom-line impact for the company.

Anyone interested in the Board Support service, or any other business products offered by Adams Moore, should contact Tessa Taylor for more details on 01827 54944.