For brothers Rick Frank Andreoli Montreal has been the city where they have found great success in business and this has included a number of business interest through the years. I caught up with the brothers last week to pick their brains about how they have been able to make a successful business career but more importantly I wanted to ask them how they have found working as a family and whether or not it was something that they would recommend, which of course they did. The key according to the brothers, is a strict set of rules.
Work is Work, Life is Life
One of the key aspects of working successfully together as a family is the importance of separating work life from business life. What eventually happens when you are working together all of the time as a family is that this is the only time that the family see each other. This of course causes a great amount of stress in the relationship and you begin to forget about what it means to be a family first and a business second, when this happens, there is trouble afoot.
At a very early stage it is going to be important that you define roles for each member of the family and that each person stays in their lane with regards to these roles. Also ensure that the hierarchy has been decided and that everyone knows who they report to and who makes the important decisions.
Before the business even starts to make any money you and your family members must map out who has stakes in the company, who is going to be working for a salary and what percentage the family members have. Once this is defined it will also be a good idea to deal with those who have a percentage stake, in terms of what kind of compensation they will be paid for working within the business.
Whether it is plan for retirement or the event of someone’s untimely death, a succession plan is a smart idea and one that will remove a great deal of potential conflict. In doing this you can ensure that the family members know who will be taking our place should something happen and it also ensures that the successor is aware of what is going to happen and on board with the decision.
Hire People From Outside
Always make sure that you have neutral figures in the business at all levels, these individuals are going to be the peacemaker at times and they will also be the voice of reason when it is needed. Not only can outsiders bring value to the business on their own merits, not being a member of the family will be highly beneficial to those within the family unit.
Work hard, remember always that there is nothing bigger or more important than the family.