When you think of the term "family business," you may initially think of the mom and pop store in your neighborhood—you know, the kind of small business that supports and is run by a single family. You rarely think of large, successful, global organisations.
The fact of the matter is that "family businesses" come in all shapes and sizes, from the small convenience store where father orders the merchandise, mother does the books, and the kids run the cash register, to the large corporation that provides income not only to the family members who own or control it, but to thousands of other families as well. Some of these businesses are governed by family members only, while others rely heavily on outside influences. Some family businesses employ a "hands-on" philosophy, while in others family members merely play an advisory role.
My point here is that there is no one "blueprint" that these businesses must follow. That being said, when I refer to "family businesses" in my book, you can assume four things to be true: