Here are some ways to prepare next generation for eventual participation in the board:
- Hold shadow or junior board meetings for the next generation that simulate board experience.
These meetings usually follow the official board meeting where management presentations, topics discussed, background information and decisions taken are shared for the benefit of next generation.
- It would be ideal family member with in-depth knowledge could share the “Board pack" (Agenda, reports, presentations, documents) with the next gen member to provide absolute clarity regarding processes
- Next generation members could be invited to attend the annual general meetings where the directors present a summary of the year gone by and also share future prospects.
- A meeting exclusive to the next gen members and independent board members could be arranged to give them an outsider’s perspective of the organization.
Most importantly next generation members should be consciously groomed in such a manner that facilitates seamless entry into the board.
General advice to the next generation members
- Gather relevant work experience before joining the family business.
- Prepare self in taking calculated risks after credible evaluation of all relevant factors.
- Understand that there is no replacement for hard work.
- Seek and wholeheartedly receive the guidance of a mentor outside of the business.
- Embrace Learning orientation.
- Own your decisions.
Consider failure as a stepping stone towards progress.