If you ask a family boss what makes them special, they will mention their long-term perspective. They are also likely to tell you that their family’s values shape who they are and how they do business. Families built the foundations of many industries, from high fashion to car making, and their longevity has often enabled them to build trustworthy names and eventually become prominent philanthropists. As the next generation of family business leaders get positioned to run their family companies into the twenty first century, many are abandoning the “get rich first and give back later” philosophy. They want to create impact and meaning while they do it. Beyond responsibilities to their stakeholders, their reputations mean more than quality products at affordable prices and they place more emphasis on giving back as part of their legacy, not just ensuring the continuation of the family firm to the next generation. Such values are increasingly being shared by their peers in the corporate world, especially those at inflection points in their careers, pondering their next significant career move.
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