Understanding the transgenerational orientation of family businesses: the role of family governance and business family identity

Julia Süss-Reyes

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review

Abstract

The development of a transgenerational orientation is one of the most significant challenges that family businesses face and only a small number actually survive across generations. While prior research has focused on the business unit to provide us with a solid understanding of how corporate governance affects business performance and continuity, the role of the business family in the development of a transgenerational orientation has received less attention. To address this gap, this article applies a new systems and social identity theory framework to examine how family governance and business family identity can contribute to strengthening the transgenerational orientation of the business. A transgenerational orientation is defined as a decision premise to maintain the family’s control over the business across generations. Using a large data set, findings show that the presence of family governance measures and the business family’s identity are positively related to a transgenerational orientation of the business, with business family identity acting as a mediator. Thus, the development of family governance measures can foster communication within the business family and enhance the family members’ emotional investment in the business which strengthens the transgenerational orientation in the business.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)749 - 777
JournalJournal of Business Economics (JBE) (früher: Zeitschrift für Betriebswirtschaft ZfB)
Volume87
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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