Although a majority of family-business owners recently surveyed by accounting firm of Coopers & Lybrand intended to leave their companies to their offspring, many had done little to ensure that successful transitions will happen.
Q: If you plan to keep the business in your family, what steps have been taken to ensure the family's continuing participation? % of respondents
My children and/or family members already participate in the business. 77%
A nonfamily "steward" will manage the business until my children come of age 10
It's addressed in my will 35
I have a management-succession plan 27
I've purchased life insurance to cover potential estate-tax costs. 40
I have a buy-sell agreement that ensures family succession 29
Note: Multiple answers permitted
Source: Coopers & Lybrand, "Growing Your Wealth," a survey of family business owners, 1993.