(The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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Carney was speaking Friday afternoon at the Family Business Symposium at the Olayan School of Business, an event bringing together international family business experts and those actively engaged in running and maintaining their companies through several generations in Lebanon.The vast majority of family firms don't make it to the second generation.Good governance and succession plans are key for family business survival in Lebanon and elsewhere in the world. But within that are the nitty-gritty details that are all too often overlooked – the criticalness of long-term planning (in many cases several years for a smooth transition), the importance of outside experience (for both family members and other employees) and the need to recognize the value of different personality types in the family business.Reg Athwal, a U.K.-based family business consultant and author, whose grandfather established a company in India that later faced succession challenges, now coaches family businesses on good governance handovers, which can take years of planning and training.Similarly, for Karim Baalbaki, chairman and managing director of A.S. Holding, took over the family company amid a climate of political tension. What he describes as "an unforgiving region" is also one that pushed his family business to constantly reinvent itself.
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