Leading & Scheduling a Family Meeting

Who Will Facilitate This Gathering?

For the sake of family unity, select someone who has the general respect of the family to lead or facilitate your first family meeting. Many families find that the family-meeting leader should be someone other than the head of the business, enterprise or ranch.

It is usually best that the meeting leader not be the CEO or founder of the firm, as this sometimes inhibits younger members from fully participating, often out of respect (or fear) of the CEO/founder. The long term goal is to rotate the family-meeting leader role among adults within the family. 

Scheduling a Family Business Meeting:

A family business meeting should be scheduled and all participants invited.

  • The meeting should be scheduled for a fixed length of time. The first meeting can be set for 1.5 or 2 hours.
  • It is best to have an agenda, generated by the meeting leader and distributed to each participant prior to the beginning of the meeting. Keep it simple and low-key for the initial meeting.
  • Give each participant a copy of the Guidelines for Communication, and ask each to sign before the meeting begins.
  • Try to keep your initial meeting focused on more general topics Save emotionally-laden topics for future meetings.

Topics for Family Meetings