From Fathers to Daughters—A Growing Trend Among Family Businesses


Although family businesses have traditionally featured fathers transitioning their companies to their sons, things are changing.

Forbes contributor Chris Farrell reported in today’s business news about a growing trend: fathers are increasingly transitioning their businesses to their daughters, instead of their sons.

“Women-owned family businesses have increased by 58% since 2007 and nearly 25% of family businesses are led by a woman CEO or president. Almost 60% of family businesses have women in top management positions,” the report reads.

One family business featured in the story is Flannery Construction, a Saint Paul-based construction company owned and operated by Gerry Flannery since 1980. A few years ago, at age 65, Gerry initiated the process of transitioning the company to his younger daughter, Jamey.

When I coached Jamey on shaping a personal platform and preparing to take over from her father, she told me stories of spending time at the office after school and on weekends. Her assignments included cleaning the office, and generally doing the odd jobs that enhance a company environment.

Jamey laughs, “I started from the bottom and I understand first hand most of the roles I ask others to take on. It gives me perspective.”

Learning to take on the small stuff helped her shape her own vision for the company– she saw the importance of understanding all aspects of the business, while building a team of leaders with different strengths. Later, she found her niche in green design and construction (environmentally responsible and climate friendly) and used that interest to develop her approach to leading this successful construction company.

In my coaching practice, I am especially interested in working with women like Jamey Flannery.  By shaping a unique platform for each woman, I help them develop their strongest voice. Having this solid foundation to stand on gives women the confidence to express their largest vision, and lead it forward.

Have you taken time to assess the strength and veracity of your personal platform? Would you like to find out what happens when you do?

Contact Catherine for an introductory consultation.

Catherine Reid Day