Case 12: The Cousins Tournament
In The Cousins Tournament case, Al Blanchard decides that he is ready to retire as President of the family business, Grandview Industries. He has overseen the business for 27 years, along with help from his brother Morris. But with the New Year’s Eve announcement of Al’s upcoming retirement, a lot needed to be discussed, specifically in regards to the succession of the family business. In the current state of Grandview Industries, there was no succession plan. So with Al now planning a retirement, he and Morris were forced to plan for the business’ future. After great discussion, they sought the knowledge of a close business friend, Peter and an appointed council. The succession plan and the future of Grandview Industries would be determined through this council.
Some of the problems that Al Blanchard and Grandview Industries face are: the immediate succession plan; the succession plan following the appointment of the new President; defining the roles within the business; defining the company’s goals; and determining the executive committee or board/council. These challenges will be tough, but will need to be addressed with the family business at the forefront. Even though Peter has been selected as a business advisor, Al and Morris Blanchard will need to approve all decisions; they will not be able to take the “back seat” at this time, especially if Grandview Industries will continue to be successful. Questions:
1. The central challenges that Al Blanchard, his family, and Grandview Industries faces are: the lack of preparation for the future leadership, the lack of succession planning, and determining who should be included in the succession plan. 2. Because family members assume active roles in various parts of their own family business, they must ensure that the above mentioned details are discussed well in advance, and ultimately determined prior to. But as we see in this case, because of some sibling-spouse conflict...
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