Family Governance


Family Governance

Deloitte Private

Dynastic Planning | Governance | Mediation

The goal of Family Governance is to establish a scalable, sustainable and secure framework around the Family Business while defining and organising the relationship among Family Members, while also organising their relationship with the source of their financial wealth.

In order to manage complexity, family businesses and family offices need family governance structures. Family governance structures enable business families to organise themselves and they also guide a family’s relationship with their family business or family office.

In our experience, well designed and properly implemented family business governance structures result in greater harmony between family members, a more focused business and easier transitions between generations. We work with families, to set up family councils, boards of directors or other family business communication platforms and forums. This can involve working with families to develop employment and remuneration policies; supporting families in defining the various roles, responsibilities, rights and privileges of the various stakeholders and once agreed, implementing their decisions.

We are also often asked to review existing governance arrangements against family business governance best practice. Whatever the assignment, we believe in documenting the agreements and decisions that a family makes. A clear written family constitution / charter / set of protocols based on an agreed vision and shared family values, prevents friction and doubt in decision-making and creates clarity of roles and responsibilities. Families often tell us that the process of creating alignment on key issues is as valuable as the written constitution and family governance structures themselves.

Creating family governance best practice with you:

  • Analysing the needs of the family and the business
  • Taking a multi-generational approach
  • Providing you with examples of family business governance best practice and how other families have structured their governance
  • Designing a structure that supports the family’s vision for the future
  • Facilitating constructive dialogue and frank discussion of key issues
  • Translating the outputs of governance discussions into written form.

Region-specific tools

Over the past 20 years we have worked with over 100 families from the Middle East and the GCC to devise region specific tools.  Our intimate understanding of the local culture, legal system and values-system allows us to build robust, and where required Sharia compliant frameworks to protect the Family enterprise.

Family meetings

Family meetings are an important part of family business planning. They are the forum for discussing important issues such as plans for future ownership of the business, family partnership in the business, and helping children manage inherited wealth. Learning how to plan and run successful family meeting is vital.