"We must teach children to think, not what to think."
Generational change is a complex process that must be programmed in time, to prevent it from becoming a problem It must therefore be prepared following the family expectations, aspirations, and abilities of the new generation, according to business needs and prospects.
The dimensions to be addressed in the context of the family succession are manifold. We want to focus on one fundamental aspect here: training.
The theme of training must be seen as external and internal. Concerning the external aspects, we talk both about the actual training path – therefore the studies carried out or to be carried out – and the training resulting from work experience at third-party companies.
Internal training, on the other hand, is understood as the gradual path that the new levers must take within the family company through mechanisms of job rotation, support (to external experts or internal managers) to better understand the complexity of the company.
Insufficient preparation of heirs is one of the main risk factors. The main objective of training, therefore, must be to minimize the risks of failure of the family succession, but also to avoid the rise of false expectations within the family.
The path that seems most suited to the needs of family businesses is the one in which the child follows a targeted training course, possibly obtains a master's degree, and perfects himself with training at a third company. In this case, in fact, in addition to having a solid theoretical preparation, it is possible to create such a situation that, in the hands of the young person in the company, there is greater credibility, wider perspective, and greater speed of integration.
All other possible routes are full of pitfalls and, especially for some of them, the disadvantages are far greater than the advantages. Let's think about the case of those who follow a training path that has nothing to do with corporate life. In this situation, acquiring the necessary knowledge and skills can be a very long road that also requires a strong spirit of sacrifice.
It is not desirable, however, that parents oblige their children to follow paths against their wishes. This often backfires (leaving school, family problems, etc.).
It is important that, even in SMEs, entrepreneurs understand that it is necessary to strip as much of the role of the parent as possible to adopt all the programming techniques necessary to integrate their children into the company and to be able to give as much objective judgment as possible about the abilities of the new generations.
Having the time to guide the entire training path, internal as well as external, is certainly an advantage for SMEs as well. With this model, you can increase the chances of success of the generational change process.
Source: Financial Times (2016)
|1||Insead||France - Singapore|
|2||Stanford Graduate School of Business||USA|
|3||University of Pennsylvania: Wharton||USA|
|4||Harvard Business School||USA|
|5||University of Cambridge: Judge||England|
|6||London Business School||England|
|7||Columbia Business School||USA|
|8||IE Business School||Spain|
|9||University of Chicago: Booth||USA|
|10||Iese Business School||Spain|
|12||Northwestern University: Kellogg||USA|
|14||University of California at Berkeley: Haas||USA|
|15||HKUST Business School||China|
|16||Yale School of Management||USA|
|17||Esade Business School||Spain|
|18||Dartmouth College: Tuck||USA|
|19||New York University: Stern||USA|
|23||University of Michigan: Ross||USA|
|24||Duke University: Fuqua||USA|
|24||Nanyang Business School||Singapore|
|25||National University of Singapore Business School||Singapore|
Source: QS world ranking (elaborata nel 2016)
|5||UCB (University of California Berkeley)||USA|
|6||University of Chicago||USA|
|7||LSE (London School of Economics)||England|
|8||University of Oxford||England|
|10||University of Cambridge||England|
|13||University of Pennsylvania||USA|
|14||NYU (New York University)||USA|
|16||UCL (University College of London)||England|
Source: Censis 2016
|5||Urbino Carlo Bo|
|9||Rome Tor Vergata|
|12||Napoli Federico II|
|16||Modena e Reggio Emilia|
Source: sole 24 ore (2016)
|8||Politecnica delle Marche|
|9||Venezia Cà Foscari|
Source: sole 24 ore (2016)
|3||Milan, San Raffaele|
Extract from the book “Come gestire il passaggio generazionale nelle PMI italiane”, by Gian Andrea Oberegelsbacher & Leading Network, published by WKI (Ipsoa) 2017