News and Events
Boone Center for the Family Focuses on Strengthening Family Businesses
Only 30 percent of family businesses survive to a second generation, and less than 15 percent are passed on to a third generation. Why? "All the research in family business succession points to the biggest barriers being more in the relational and family systems arena, as opposed to the business and financial planning arena," says Ken Canfield, executive director of the Boone Center for the Family (BCFF), part of the Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education and Psychology.
On Saturday, November 15, the BCFF hosted an educational symposium,"The Predictors of Success in Wealth and Values Transfer," to address this issue. The event, which took place at the Drescher Graduate Campus in Malibu, brought in 28 family businesses to learn from experts the best practices in succession planning.
Canfield was one of three keynote speakers at the event, joined by Roy Williams, founder of the Williams Group; and Grant Goodvin, founder of Family Industry Consulting Group. Canfield is a research scholar specializing in fathering and the history of the family, and a consultant to family businesses and foundations; Williams has spent 40 years advising families on transition of wealth strategies and written Preparing Heirs and Philanthropy, Heirs and Values; and Goodvin is an attorney with 30 years experience in running a conglomerate of family businesses. Each drew from over 40 years of accumulated research on family-held companies to address topics such as heir preparation, parental expectations, trust, communication, and equity using a "success practice" approach.
Among the research shared at the symposium was that, of the 20 million business enterprises in the United States, over 80 percent are family-directed. In addition, family-owned or family-run firms account for more than 50 percent of the employment and gross national product in the U.S. Furthermore, families control more than one third of Fortune 500 companies. Despite these impressive statistics, most family businesses do not develop and apply an effective succession strategy.
"The Family Business Symposium exceeded all of our expectations," Canfield says. "The feedback from all attendees was they want to come to future events where we unpack the essence of successful strategies in wealth and values transfer."
BCFF was established in 1996 through the inspiration and foundation of M. Norvel and Helen Young and endowed by Pat and Shirley Boone in 2006. Its mission is to equip and educate students, leaders, and influencers with resources and research that promote healthy relationships and help strengthen families. Initiatives include a fatherhood program, marriage intensives (practical seminars for marriage enrichment and parenting), family life ministry certification, a student relationship IQ project, as well as trainings for churches, professionals, and lay leaders who reach wider audiences in their communities.
Click here for more information on the Boone Center for the Family.