When the Family Gets Smaller…

There’s no such thing as a “good” divorce, but it’s possible to make a tough situation better. It depends on how both sides – and family members – choose to work through the aftermath, especially if a divorcing spouse worked in the family business. In this installment of the View From the Owner Room series, BanyanGlobal partner Marion McCollom Hampton shares her advice to families who have to “exit” a family member from the family business. This is a challenging topic because emotions are always heightened, but there are best practices that can make the transition smooth and even positive for the family and the business.

Time Stamps and Key Takeaways from the podcast are below.

Time Stamps:

[0:35] What is important to understand when “exiting” a family member from the business family– presumably from a divorce?

[2:05] In any divorce where there are children involved, you must put them first and keep it cordial. Do not force anyone in the family or friends to choose sides.

[3:40] Is it more difficult to go through a divorce with a business-owning family?

[5:42] Who should be handling the communication to the family business and all involved parties?

[7:38] What should you do if the divorce is contentious and could affect the family and the business in a negative way?

[9:01] A prenup should allow for clarity in certain aspects of the divorce, such as who gets or keeps what assets, especially in relation to the business, but it doesn’t dictate the way people act when they are hurt or upset.

[10:20] What role, if any, does the patriarch or matriarch play in a divorce in the business family?

[11:40] What is the experience like for spouses who are the ones exiting the family and the business that has played a large part in their life?

[13:03] Why is it important for the business family to handle the divorce in a way that is neutral and in good faith?

[15:15] How can the exit of a family member (not a spouse exiting because of a divorce) for any reason, whether their choice or not, be done well?

[19:09] It takes time for the emotions to cool down after an exit from the business, and that time should be respected.

[20:57] Marion’s top 3 tips for a family and business going through an exit process.

Key Takeaways: