Running a family business

16th November 2016

The idea of starting a family-run business can be an attractive prospect for many people. Running a business together in an industry you’re interested in certainly has its merits, but also has its own challenges. Just because you’re running the business with members of your own family doesn’t mean you can take it easy. Far from it, in fact. As well as facing issues common to any business, you’re also contending with issues that may arise from working with other family members.

Putting your foot down:

You may see yourself as the head of the business, but do they? Being the boss means being the decision maker, your word has to be law. You may share the same vision as the rest of your family members, but it’s your guidance and decision-making that will allow them to achieve it.

However, when running a family business, the boundaries between boss and employee can easily get blurred. It’s important that you ensure that your stance as head of the business is recognised and that every family member has their own appointed area. Ensuring that each person’s role is well defined is vital for nullifying and preventing internal disputes. Of course, everyone can share their ideas, thoughts and opinions, which you can take under advisement, but your decision must always be final.

Maintaining standards:

Even though you’re working with your family you still need to maintain high productivity and operational standards, just like any other business. This may be obvious, but many family-run businesses fall victim to this form of mismanagement. You might be having to contend with opposing points of view or over-inflated egos, but you need to maintain control and be the driving force. Yes, this means having to give family members a push, but in the long run it’ll make your combined efforts amount to something worthwhile.

Give praise where it’s due, a poke with a stick when necessary. You need to run your business like an open forum, letting everyone have their say and point out areas of concern. Giving everyone a voice lets them know their efforts are appreciated and that they provide a valuable contribution to the running of the business. Sometimes it may even be useful to bring in an external advisor, or mentor, who can offer a different perspective and could ease any tensions.

Ensuring growth:

Like any business, no matter the sector, you still need to ensure your long-term success. It’s imperative that you expand your services, products and market coverage, explore new areas and reach more customers. A few ways to grow your business may include acquiring more equipment, redecorating, expanding facilities, creating new areas and improving your tech and management systems. Even ensuring family members have adequate training in their assigned areas can help expansion and boost growth. Of course, this will require a large financial commitment, which on your own can be quite hefty, but it needn’t be that way.

Acquiring finance:

As time progresses, there will be many areas of your family’s business that will need to be modified or changed entirely. You may decide to embark upon numerous projects that may prove highly beneficial in the long run. Whatever your goals, you’ll need ample amounts of funding and support to achieve them. This can prove challenging for many businesses, especially if you’ve chosen to pour your family’s own capital into the early stages of your venture. You also don’t want to be left without any working capital. This is where Rangewell can step in and help source the ideal financial solution for your specific family business.

With our in-depth knowledge and understanding of a wide range of industries, your business could benefit from an extensive assortment of products, including loans, leases and hire purchase solutions. Whatever you need, whenever you need it, entrust Rangewell to guide you into a brighter tomorrow.

Our values are simple – we’re on your side. We support a wide range of SME businesses of every shape and size, for finding every type of finance. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn for business tips and tricks, and feel free to call us on 0203 637 2340 if you’d like to chat about what we can do for you.


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David Harrison

David Harrison

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