Complex Made Simple

GFBC hosts INSEAD’s next-generation family business leadership workshop

First-of-its-kind workshop covered topics on leadership, career growth, and interpersonal family business communications

Gulf Family Business Council (GFBC) organised a three day interactive family business leadership workshop, for the next generation of 18 family businesses from across the GCC, Turkey and Lebanon.

The workshop was held in cooperation with the Business School (INSEAD), and was led by Professor Randel Carlock, former Director of Wendel International Centre for Family Enterprise, and entrepreneurship and family business Lecturer at INSEAD.

“The INSEAD Bootcamp for family businesses marks our first offering of education workshops to the next generation from family businesses in the GCC. We have collaborated with INSEAD, one of the leading educational business schools, to run the first-of-its- kind interactive workshop in Dubai, for the next generation within family businesses,” said Chairman of GFBC, His Excellency Abdulaziz Abdullah Al Ghurair.

This initiative comes after the recent release of the GCC family business study undertaken by the Council and McKinsey & Company; findings of the study has showed that one of the main challenges faced by family business is managing challenging family business dynamics and preparing the next generation for leadership roles. The leadership workshop aims to raise awareness about key family business topics and grow interpersonal skills which are vital to handle the growth of family businesses and succession planning challenges.

“The workshop is part of our ongoing strategy to educate the next generation of family business members, as well as increase their awareness on vital topics and issues related to their core businesses such as implementing good corporate governance, achieving smooth succession planning, and preparing to lead the business,” added Al Ghurair.

The workshop covered topics such as coaching and mentoring, team building, problem solving techniques, and creativity styles in family businesses. It also presented participants with tools to think about the growth opportunities as well as challenges for members of family businesses. The workshop format is very experiential and relies on learning with other participants and applying new ideas to each family member’s situation.

The course aims to enrich the experience of family business employees, and develop their skills on areas such like interpersonal skills, and family business leadership through coaching and mentoring and the communication skills necessary to build effective interpersonal, team and organisational relationships, which play significant role in enhancing the level of organisational work both, internally and externally.

Professor Randel Carlock said: “Most of us don’t have a comprehensive understanding of how family business communication is important and vital in facilitating continued development and coherence in any family business. In fact receiving and processing new information is the only tool to discuss values, roles, power, and a shared vision within any family business, and we no doubt, use and need these communication skills in every aspect of our work and family lives.”

At the end of the workshop, participants shared their thoughts on how they enjoyed the new perspective of how they could manage family businesses in the future. The workshop explored the intellectual, emotional and spiritual connections with family business as well as considering careers or participation opportunities as owner or director in the family business; all of which are starting points for many next generation leaders. They also appreciated the networking opportunities they had at the workshop and the valuable relationships developed with other family businesses.