The Landscape of Family Business

The Landscape of Family Business

Edited by Ritch L. Sorenson, Andy Yu, Keith H. Brigham and G. T. Lumpkin

The Landscape of Family Business expands upon groundbreaking research to offer owners, consultants, and academics a new holistic way to view family business.

Chapter 6: Family business roles

Pramodita Sharma and Frank Hoy

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship, family business


Yu, Lumpkin, Sorenson, and Brigham (2012) – the editors of this book – painstakingly reviewed 257 empirical studies on family business published between 1998 and 2009 in nine journals. The studies revealed 327 different dependent variables. Next, they sought input from family business advisors, owners, and scholars, mapping the identified variables into seven clusters that form the Landscape Map. Each cluster is the subject of a chapter in this book. Three clusters labeled Performance, Strategy, and Social and Economic Impact are largely focused on the business system of family enterprises. Performance anchors the business end of the map. The three clusters of Succession, Family Dynamics, and Family Business Roles relate to the family-system of family enterprises. The family end of the Landscape Map is anchored by the Family Business Roles cluster. The Governance cluster falls in the middle of the map as this cluster includes variables that balance the needs of the family and the business systems. The focus of this chapter is on the Family Business Roles cluster, which Yu et al.(2012) define as the “roles and attitudes of family business members and non-members.”

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