Business communication methods within a family business

Author: Charles Gowlland, James Kirk (

Categories: Communications, Family Business
Tags: advisors, family business, family meetings, managing money
Business communication methods within a family business are affected by very different circumstances to, say, a professional firm. In this TV show Charles Gowlland of Smith & Williamson discusses family meetings & the next generation.

Business communication methods in families

Another aspect that we thought was very interesting in the survey was the attitude to the degree of formality that family communications, family meetings had. We were surprised at the number of people who didn’t have regular meetings. Only about three quarters of the respondents had regular meetings. For our clients with whom we’re involved we always try to be mindful that some degree of formality is needed. Family education after all and family communication is a mixture of the formal and the informal. So the formal would usually take place in the form of a family meeting, typically annually but sometimes quarterly or semi-annually as well and the split between those three was roughly equal. But as I say about a quarter of the respondents didn’t have any meetings at all and generally the reason behind that was that most of them would have had minor children and so it wasn’t necessarily appropriate to have meetings with other members of the family, although it might have been with advisors. Equally and probably the other main surprising statistic to come out of the survey was the fact that a good number of the respondents felt that it was important for their children to have greater expertise in managing money and they were worried about whether their children had the right skills to cope with managing the family money and again about a quarter of the respondents felt into that category.

Inside Finance TV will continue to share examples of business communications methods across industries.

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