Why You Should Sell The Family Business

Why You Should Sell The Family Business
Life After Business Podcast

00:00 / 01:00:14

Dr. Tom Deans and I discuss a topic that is way too common in the business world. Gifted family businesses. This traditional approach to business is still very much alive and well, but Tom is of the opinion it is a practice that needs to die. The author of Every Family’s Business is a firm believer that every business should be sold, including to family members.

Tom presents a logical and compelling argument that business owners need to get out of their own way and allow their company to go to market. Buying your family company is a much healthier model that makes sure that the right people own and run the company.  Tom defends his position and explains how he came to his opinion.

What you will learn:

  • Tom’s professional background.
  • Why the book is considered controversial.
  • The 2 camps that have the strongest resistance to Tom’s message.
  • The typical family business story and what’s wrong with it.
  • Why Tom joined his family business.
  • The importance of family meetings and open conversations.
  • Tom’s goal for the book.
  • How to redefine the term “legacy.”
  • Lessons all aging founders need to take away from Tom’s book.
  • How to discourage family animosity and misunderstanding.
  • Tom’s second book, Willing Wisdom.
  • The conversations every family needs to have regarding the business.
  • How to run a family meeting.
  • Give your family the freedom to be themselves.


Sit down with your family and have a family business meeting. Discuss all the financial stuff, all the past and current disagreements, and just try to get to an open and healthy place. For the sake of your family and the business.

Links and Resources:


GEXP Collaborative
Every Family’s Business website
Willing Wisdom website

About Tom:

Tom Deans Ph.D. is the author of Every Family’s Business: 12 Common Sense Questions to Protect Your Wealth, selected by the New York Times as one of the Top Ten Books Business Owners Should Read.

With more than a million copies in circulation, Every Family’s Business is the best-selling family business book of all-time. The sequel, Willing Wisdom is also an international best-seller that answers the question “How prepared is your family to inherit?”

His research and thought leadership on the subjects of wealth transfers, preparing heirs and family dynamics has made him an in-demand speaker. Since the release of his first book in 2008, Tom has delivered more than 1000 paid speeches in 20 countries. He has also provided advanced training to advisors employed by the world’s largest financial institutions, law firms, and accounting firms.

His thought-provoking and contrarian approach to business succession planning and family wealth transitions leave audiences motivated to take action and to work closely with their advisors.

Dr. Deans is also the Founder of the Willing Wisdom IndexTM a new digital client engagement tool for advisors to use with prospects and clients to answer the question: “How Prepared is Your Family to Inherit?”

The Willing Wisdom Index is offered as a subscription service to advisors who want to build a bridge to the next generation of inheritors. It is also used by advisors as a sales wedge to pry HNW clients from advisors who offer no estate planning support. For more information on the Willing Wisdom IndexTM, visit www.WillingWisdomIndex.com

Dr. Deans is a frequent guest commentator on the subjects of business succession planning and intergenerational wealth transfers. He has appeared on all major national TV and radio news shows and has been featured in the New York Times, Entrepreneur, Inc, Fortune, and the Wall Street Journal.

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