Over 80% of the businesses in the United States are family-owned and managed. From the corner deli or barbershop to global empires in brewing, media, and cleaning products, family businesses employ over half of the country's workforce, and are the dominant business model in many countries around the world. Family businesses embody the entrepreneurial spirit that drives innovation and economic growth and that represents the hopes and dreams of millions for independence, self-sufficiency, and wealth. And yet the track record for entrepreneurial businesses is poor: over three-quarters will fail during the first five years and only 10% will survive a decade. Family business statistics show that fewer than one-third pass successfully to a second generation, often the result of insufficient planning. Edward Hess, who has researched and served as a consultant to family businesses for over 20 years, argues that the business and the family are distinct overlapping living organisms, constantly changing and influencing each other. In order for both to thrive, each family business must establish a proactive process for defining roles, articulating goals, and communicating them constantly. Drawing from numerous in-depth examples (both positive and negative) and presenting templates and other practical resources, Hess offers a fascinating glimpse into the dynamics of family business management and specific strategies to promote the health of the enterprise--involving family business leaders and members, non-family employees, board members, and shareholders. A comprehensive guide, The Successful Family Business covers the spectrum of topics from creating a family values statement and code of conductto resolving conflicts among siblings to managing transitions in leadership and the potential sale of the business. Other issues include: defining perks and benefits (for family and non-family members), working with the board of directors, and going public. Hess concludes with a series of operating rules that apply to every family business and a listing of practical references and resources. The result is a book that will help anyone involved in a family business to develop successful practices that both maximize the value of the business and enhance family relationships.