From Legacy Moment eNewsletter (10/01/2010)
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After the inevitable question about where to start, most people want to know, "Who do you recommend to help us through the succession planning process?"
Selecting someone to act as a facilitator to help your family through the succession planning process is a key decision. In addition to certain professional qualifications and capabilities, a facilitator should be prepared to:
- Guide a multidisciplinary team of professionals to help the family achieve their succession planning objectives.
- Facilitate family meetings, lead discussions and interviews with owners, management, other professionals and the family.
- Delegate responsibilities and follow up as appropriate to ensure that planning and implementation are completed in a reasonable time frame.
- Coordinate the process to avoid stalls, roadblocks, and train wrecks; and oversee all communication, planning and implementation.
- Inform the family regarding all relevant financial and legal developments that may affect the plan as it is implemented---reviewing and revising the plan in accordance with current tax law, business environment, and family dynamics.
Use the "Selecting an Adviser" tool from the Farm Journal Legacy Project Workbook (page 76) to interview and evaluate your top facilitator candidates. Hiring a professional is not unlike hiring a contractor to build your house; the contractor may specialize in a trade, yet also have the skills and abilities necessary to coordinate the team and ensure a design compatible with your objectives.
In succession planning, the professional you choose as facilitator may come from any one of the disciplines you’ll need to implement the plan---legal, accounting, financial, insurance or banking.
Resources and Links for You:
Selecting an Adviser – a brief interview guide to help you identify an adviser who can facilitate your family’s succession planning process.
Farm Journal Legacy Project Workbook – the Workbook which accompanies the Legacy Project Workshop series is now available online for free download.
Observe the process in real-time… Keep up with our Legacy Project Case Study families - on the Legacy Project site or on Facebook
Have you checked out the new and more robust AgWeb and Legacy Project Web sites? They offer easier navigation and more reasons to check back every day.