The Family Council : A commucation forum in the family business
Master Thesis within Business Administration
The Family Council – A communication forum in the family business
Subject terms: Family business, family council, corporate governance, communication,
Introduction: Family businesses differentiate themselves from other businesses by combining
business and family. This combination creates a complex situation
where the family members need to unified strive towards the same objectives.
A forum could be needed to unify the family members, where they
can discuss different opinions and concerns. Such a forum could be a family
council. The family council is a relatively new phenomenon in Sweden and
relatively little research has been undertaken in this area.
The purpose of this thesis is to examine the role and the implications of
family councils in family businesses. This will be investigated in a Swedish
context through the study of three family councils.
A qualitative approach was used to fulfill the purpose of this thesis. Interviews
with eleven individuals were made to gather different perspectives of
the family council and its relation with the business. The majority of the interviews
were made face-to-face while two of the interviews were conducted
Conclusion: The family council is created to provide the family members with a forum
where they can discuss the business and owner issues, in addition it encourages
the participants to communicate in a more professional manner. This
forum is also a positive factor for improved cohesiveness in the family.
Practical aspects of the family council are to be determined by the particular
family since it is important that the structure fits the specific family. Further,
the family council has a positive influence on the family but the management
team is not directly influenced. The forum has improved the communication
among the family members. It has strengthened the bonds, brought
them closer together, and increased the respect and trust among the family
members. The family council has also been beneficial when it comes to conflict
management since it has helped the family members to improve their
communications skills and, as a result, they are better at handling and discussing
the conflict(s) to find a solution. The family council facilitates for
the communication between the family members to be open where none of
the participants are afraid of expressing what they feel, think or believe.
School:Högskolan i Jönköping
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:family business council corporate governance communication conflict management
Date of Publication:06/27/2007