Northumbria university to provide tools and confidence for family businesses

Northumbria university to provide tools and confidence for family businesses

Northumbria University has announced details of a unique short course designed specifically to support firms that have been set up and run by family members, along with those who advise their development.

Family businesses come in all shapes and sizes. In the UK alone, they contribute £460bn to the economy and employ over 12 million people*. However, running and working in a family business is not without its challenges.

These issues were highlighted by insurer Legal and General in its ‘State of the Nation’s SMEs’ report in 2017. The report revealed that Britain’s family businesses are leaving themselves at considerable risk of failure by not planning appropriately for the impact of certain critical events. The insurer’s research found that just 42% of the UK’s family-run firms had any form of succession planning in place. The impact of the death or critical illness of a business owner was likely to be particularly hard, with 57% of family-run firms quoted as saying they would have to cease trading within a year and a quarter stating they could have to close their doors immediately.

Northumbria’s new short course addresses some of the key issues faced by family businesses. The course has been developed and will be delivered by Dr. Anthony Devine, who holds certificates in Family Business Advising (CFBA) and Family Wealth Advising (CFWA) from the Family Firm Institute (FFI) based in Boston, MA. Dr. Devine is also currently a faculty member for the FFI Global Education Network programme where he teaches family enterprises courses to family business members, aspiring family business advisors and those working with family firms at companies such as Wells Fargo, EY and RBS. His previous and current research, which explores how education in family issues impacts business practices, has informed the development of this course.

Speaking about the course, Dr. Devine said: ‘Family businesses form the backbone of the UK economy, they operate across a wide range of social business models and their approach, although based on the long term, is not without its challenges.  We have designed this short course to provide a range of solutions to real life scenarios and fit around the busy schedules of those who run, manage and advise family businesses.”

Vince Robson, University Business Development Manager, is looking forward to welcoming course participants and observing their development. He said: “Participants will take away tools which will enable firms to develop and embed a positive culture, underpinned by effective working practices and remain forward-looking and inventive in their outlook. 

Delivered over five, two hour sessions and priced at £495 per participant, Northumbria’s course, entitled: Managing and Developing Family Businesses - Succession Challenges and Family Wealth Planning, will provide participants with the confidence and strategies to ensure they can manage wealth for generations to come.

For further information, workshop dates and details of how to register, click here.

*Institute for Family Business Research Foundation Report