Published: 25 Oct 2021

Another way of parenting is to encourage children and grandchildren not to immediately occupy leadership positions in family companies but to start from the bottom. Not a few founders encourage their children or grandchildren to work as professionals outside the family company first. After gaining experience and appreciation from the outside, they were invited to join the family company.

There is another fact that Hadi Cahyadi noted and became part of the parenting process, namely the founders of this family business, showing that they are more diligent in working than others. They wake up early, get to work early, work up to 16 hours, and a few others. This makes many founders become good figures both in their families and companies.

Some founders also encourage their children and grandchildren to start their own business first. At this time, the children and grandchildren of the family company learned about entrepreneurship. Learn how to deal with challenges and risks. Then, the most important thing is to make them not afraid of failure.

In some family companies, the experience of failure is essential. "Even for them, failure is a luxury," said Hadi. Why? Because through these failures, children and grandchildren will learn how to be humble and always prepare themselves before starting anything. Hadi said, “So for the founders, they are very tolerant of failure. Because they understand that this will be an important lesson for posterity.” Then, through these failures, the founders of family companies will also see how their children or grandchildren can get back up. "This is precisely the most important thing," said Hadi.

Harmonizing to Prosper. In the second or third generation, harmony in the family company becomes very important. Cohesion is highly maintained through self-introspection and complete awareness that family companies are the medium for achieving prosperity in the family. It is essential to maintain this kind of cohesion, as more and more people are involved in the family company. Not only children and children-in-law but also grandchildren, cousins, nephews, and many others. So, maintaining harmony in the family becomes very important.

In that context, Hadi Cahyadi also found that behind the scenes of the family business, it turns out that mothers and grandmothers play a crucial role. "Mother and grandmother turned out to be the greatest whisperers," said Hadi. Their role, among others, is to maintain the values in the family, to be an advisor to the husband, and at the same time to guard the integrity of the family.

So, Hadi said, grandmother or mother act as "glue." In carrying out this role, the grandmother or mother usually designs various activities. For example, grandmother always invites her children and grandchildren to eat together. Alternatively, grandma asks the whole family to travel together regularly. It can be every year. "So, in a family business that has become very large, grandmother or mother plays an important role in maintaining harmony," said Hadi.

However, that is not enough. If the family business is getting bigger, in order to maintain harmony, there needs to be a kind of “constitution” in a family company. What are the contents of the constitution in a family business?

There are several. For example, the rules regarding remuneration limit family members involved in the company's business. Alternatively, it could be family conduct. Then, the rules about which members are allowed to enter the family business and who are not. For example, is it permissible for a children-in-law to help manage the family business or not? Those are some examples of constitutions in family companies. Unfortunately, Hadi noted that there are still not many family companies in Indonesia, including those whose businesses are getting bigger, with a constitution. The constitution plays a crucial role in the family business. With the constitution, every family member knows their boundaries, rights, and obligations.

One of the important clauses that need to be regulated in the constitution is the matter of a decentralized structure. That is, there are family members, whether it is children, grandchildren, children-in-law, nephews, cousins, and other family members, who cannot be united in the family business forever. This kind of condition is very natural. Thus, it is necessary to agree in the constitution that members of this family that cannot be united should be allowed to separate themselves and manage their own business. It may need to be arranged so that the businesses they establish do not become competitors of businesses run by family companies.

Collaborating to Endure. Family companies also need to realize that they cannot always work alone, especially in this era of disruption like today. So, collaboration is essential. However, according to Hadi, there are still many family companies in the world that find it difficult to trust non-family companies. They find it difficult to accept the presence of "strangers." Only in Indonesia, as far as Hadi observed, are exceptions. “Many family companies in Indonesia believe in those who are not family members. They work as professionals. So, do not be surprised if there are family companies in Indonesia where professional executives work for decades and even for life. For example, Dr. Antonius Tanan has worked for the Ciputra Group for more than 30 years. “They want to work in the family company until they retire. There is even an assumption that non-family businesses who work professionally, with their professional abilities, actually play a role as bodyguards who make the company's business sustainable," said Hadi.

These professionals, Hadi continued, even play a role in building corporate culture, seeking new business opportunities and executing them until they become businesses, bringing companies to go public, and so on. They not only work as professionals but also leave a legacy for the family business. Moreover, the phenomenon occurred in Indonesia. (JB Susetiyo, PR team. Illustration: www.dreamstime.com)