Family Business in Crisis: Letting Go

Only one in three family-owned businesses survive into the second generation, and just one in eight into the third. The reasons? Problems transferring business control from the older generation to children or relatives, business experts tell JCK. " 'Letting go' is without a doubt the most difficult issue in family business operations," says Paul Karofsky, director of the Center for Family Business at Northeastern University in Dedham, Mass. It's an issue Genovese Jewelers, a successful family business in St. Louis, has faced. Here's how the owner and his son dealt with it, along with advice from family business experts on the best ways to handle the process. From the day he opened his store in 1980, Michael Genovese, 57, expected son Joseph, now 32, to come into and eventually take over the business. Joe started working there part time while still in junior high, engraving and polish
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