University of Twente Student Theses


Does preserving family values help to sustain stability and growth in family businesses?

Ensink, M.A.G. (2020) Does preserving family values help to sustain stability and growth in family businesses?

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Abstract:Family businesses are considered as special cases when it comes to strategy making and change due to the presence of family values established in the past. Moreover, as family firms are more likely to stick to their values, they are more prone to path dependencies and so, impeding strategic change. Accordingly, this paper explores how family firms nonetheless enact family values to maintain stability and at the same time induce growth during strategy making practices without having to compromise on these family values. Literature on family business strategy is however limited and is yet to find consensus on uncovering the role of family values on strategy making practices. This study provides an answer to this question by executing a qualitative case study consisting of interviews, document analysis and observations at a large family firm. The results of this study indicate that family values are preserved through strategy creating practices, the corporate culture and external relationships and can support in creating stability and growth. By entwining family values with strategic elements, such as core values, mission and vision, these values can be preserved and shared with a large group of people. This results in a group sharing the same values and so, fosters more stability. In addition, by offering trainings and corporate parties, a community is created out of the staff which leads to a team that is willing to take an extra step in times of growth. Moreover, by establishing long-term relationships with both suppliers and customers and making this a strategic goal and not only a family asset, these relationships form the basis for stability even in times of strategic upheaval and change in value chains.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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