Families in Business (FiB), the UK’s only independent and neutral support organisation for family and privately owned businesses, has launched a major research project to uncover the biggest challenges and opportunities facing the sector this year.
The organisation, headquartered in the West Midlands, operates across the UK via a rapidly growing network of regional offices, to provide support, consultancy and membership to family firms and their owners.
FiB is inviting family businesses and professional advisers working with them, to take part in the annual survey, so they can play a vital role in improving overall understanding of the current and expected challenges and opportunities facing family firms both at home and overseas.
As well as the survey, the research project will involve a number of confidential interviews with family businesses that will enable FiB to take a ‘true reading and further explore’ the topics and issues faced by family firms, such as their views on the type and quality of support they see as available to them, and what they believe is holding them back as a family together in business.
FiB CEO Dani Saveker (pictured) explains: “The Annual Survey aims to uncover and identify the main professional and personal issues affecting the individuals working in the UK’s family businesses, reveal how family firms are adapting to meet the challenges and opportunities available, and how they are changing to match our evolving society.
“This is the third year we have conducted our survey across the UK. This year’s research will look at how well professional advisers, intermediaries, stakeholders and service providers understand family owned businesses, which are so different from other ‘conventional’ businesses. The information gathered helps us to shape the support and strategy we have as an organisation to best ‘be there’ for those in and around family businesses.
“Importantly, the survey will also gather information on how family businesses are planning for the future and next generation through succession planning, shareholder agreements and access to finance, but also how they are prioritising investing in future opportunities and innovation, whether through R&D, people, training, skills, or talent.”
The findings of the survey will be published in the FiB Annual Guide in the autumn, which will also feature advice and contributions from FiB’s Approved Advisers. “This rounded approach creates a practical series of helpful tips, action points and things to consider and discuss which can help and impact the family and their business,” says Dani.
“FiB is committed to raising awareness of the contribution the family business sector makes to the UK economy,” adds Dani, “and our research findings will not only shape the evolution of the services and advice available from us, but also provide unique insights into how and in which areas the government and other private and public sector support organisations need to adapt to match the type of support family firms need, as we continue to work to raise understanding of their valuable, important role via our growing networks and connections.”
FiB is the UK’s only neutral organisation run solely for family businesses and which has a team of professionals that have on-the-job, first-hand experience of working in a family business.
To take part in the Survey, which will be open until mid-May, contact FiB via firstname.lastname@example.org. The 2015-2016 Annual Guide will be published in September. The current Annual Guide is available: http://issuu.comcommunity/docs_2014_annual_guide
Family businesses account for two in every three UK private enterprises, employ over 9 million people in the UK, and contribute almost a quarter of all GDP each year.
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