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Primogeniture Is Fading

February 26, 2015

We all know that societal and business cultures heavily influence behavior and decisions. One dominant paradigm for family business over many centuries has been one of primogeniture – that is that the oldest son is the first choice to take over leadership of a family business. Growing up on a family farm in the 1960s, I had one older brother and five sisters and observed this assumptive succession personally. We all anticipated that Dave would follow in my father’s footsteps. But when Dave and I took different career paths after college, one of my older sisters and her husband purchased the farm and related business.


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Larry Grypp

About Larry Grypp

Larry Grypp is President of the Goering Center for Family & Private Business, part of the University of Cincinnati’s Lindner College of Business. The Goering Center is the largest family business center in the nation. Educating and nurturing family and private businesses to drive a vibrant economy in the region.


Don’t Settle For Sustainability – Flourish!

February 16, 2015

At the start of a new year, I am reminded of Leon Danco’s classic and pioneering book, “Beyond Survival“. In this book, the first of his famous 12 Commandments for the business owner is as follows: – “Thou shalt inform your managers and employees that this company shall continue forever”.

Perhaps ahead of his time, what is more sustainable than ‘forever’?


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John Neff

About John Neff

John Neff is a partner with Family Enterprise Consulting whose purpose is to assist family businesses in planning, development and transition. Previously he worked for 20 years in his family’s 3rd generation packaging manufacturing business, mainly in a financial capacity, and remains a board member. John is familiar with strategy and developmental tools such as Compression Planning, Appreciative Inquiry and Quick Response Manufacturing. He is also working to complete a PhD in Management from Case Western Reserve University.


The Value Of An Outsider’s Perspective

January 21, 2015

One of the advantages of taking a cruise is that after unpacking, you are done for a week. On the other hand, you join a captive audience. A large passenger ship with ten or more retail stores is one thing, a six cabin barge another.

We were on a cruise late last year, and counting my wife Molly, there were 10 other passengers…this ship was full with a dozen on board.

Small size leads to an unavoidable “intimacy.”

I met Mark and his wife Janet who live in Chicago and own a professional services company. By day three I discovered we were talking about a firm with nearly 200 employees and six regional offices…one international branch. Mark and Janet are the sole stockholders.


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Tom Besanceney

About Tom Besanceney

Tom Besanceney is president of Marketplex, Inc. a public relations focused marketing, branding and social media firm he founded in 1986 after working on Wendy’s: “Where’s the Beef?” ad campaign.

Based in Cincinnati, Marketplex serves a wide variety of clients in health care, hotels, retail and non profit. Since 2005, consulting services have included the formation of Advisory Boards for privately held companies.

Active in a number of civic organizations, Besanceney’s board service includes: Downtown Cincinnati, Inc., Xavier University National Alumni Board and the Chamber of Commerce Executives of Ohio.


Give Your Best Pricing For Your Most Fiercely Loyal Customers

January 5, 2015

It’s happened to you. It’s happened to everyone. You’ve been a customer of XYZ cell phone provider for years. The latest, greatest, hottest phone comes out. And it’s only $59 to NEW customers. You, the long-term customers, must pay $259 for the exact same phone.

In the old, “burn n’ churn” sales paradigm, this approach makes total sense. Get as much new business in as you can and that will more than make up for any customer fall off. Unfortunately, times have changed, customers have changed, but for many companies, their sales paradigm has not.


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Sarah Robinson

About Sarah Robinson

Sarah Robinson is a business strategist, speaker and author of the Amazon best-selling book, Fierce Loyalty: Unlocking the DNA of Wildly Successful Communities. Based in Birmingham, Alabama, Sarah advises her international clients on how to build thriving, successful communities and set their companies apart from the pack. www.fierce-loyalty.com


Managing My Sixth Child – My Small Business

December 17, 2014

I used to think parenting five children (including twins) was the most exciting, rewarding, exhausting job I could have.

Then along came number six.

This sixth child was the small business I started in 2007 with one of my IT consulting clients—and, like my kids, the company has sometimes felt like more than two hands can manage. But with time, persistence, and support from Aileron, I have been able to help my youngest grow and thrive.


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Lisa Salzman

About Lisa Salzman

Lisa joined the Fire Protection Industry in 2007 and is owner and President of Fire Tech Productions. With over 30 years of experience in the information technology field, her background in course development, training, and computer system administration has helped Fire Tech Productions expand into the e-learning field. Lisa was recently honored to accept a position on the University of Dayton Computer Science Advisory Board.