News Archive

Leading a Family Business: Best Practices for Long-Term Stewardship

Based on insights from executives across the globe, this planning guide captures the unique challenges faced by leaders of a family business and presents an approach to help these operations survive and thrive across generations. Read more...

2017 Family Enterprise Leadership Award

Michael Golden and Carolyn Greenspon of the Ochs/Sulzberger family accepted the 2017 Kellogg Family Enterprise Leadership Award for the family's exemplary leadership of The New York Times now in its 6th generation since 1896. . Read more...

Joining the Family Business: One Year In

Executive in Residence Lunch and Learn with W.S. Darley & Co.
"Today, say nothing that is not true, nothing that is not kind, nothing that is not useful, and nothing that is not necessary." Read more...

2016 Trust Barometer Report: Trust and CEOs

KCFE will host a presentation of the 2016 Key Findings by two of Edelman's top executives.
We are fortunate that our Center for Family Enterprises (CFE) at Kellogg will host a presentation of the 2016 Key Findings by two of Edelman's top executives to members of the Northwestern University community. Read more...

Field Trip to Radio Flyer, Inc. - 92 Years Young

Radio Flyer hosts a group of Kellogg students from the EMBA.
"He transformed the firm from a steel-stamping, limited-SKU plant to an imaginative design shop that inspires kids daily!" Read more...

Managing the Communication Paradox in the Family Business Circus

Craig Blog: There are many ways to approach the management of the communication paradox.
Successful multi-generational families in business don't leave managing the communication paradox to chance ... it is their number one priority. Read more...

Founder of Staples, Friend of KCFE, Remembered

Shefsky Blog: Tom Stemberg, the founder of Staples, the first big box office products stores, passed away on Friday October 23rd, after a long, brave battle with stomach cancer. Read more...

Innovation and Culture: Field Trip to SC Johnson

Twenty students from Kellogg's MBA student Family Enterprise Club (FEC) were lucky to start off fall quarter with a day-long tour to the SCJ campus. Read more...

Announcing Visiting Professor Pramodita Sharma

John Ward: "Her passion for family business students makes her a perfect fit for our vision as a Center." Read more...

Conference Proceedings Books

Proceedings Books from our past Family Business Conferences 2002-2007. Insights gleaned from these books are as important and relevant today as they were then. Read more...

Q&A With New KCFE Co-Director, Justin Craig

This summer, our CFE welcomed new professor and new co-director, Justin Craig, Ph.D. (JC). He joined us from Northeastern University in Boston. Prior to that, he was Co-Director of the Australian Centre for Family Business at Bond University and earlier still served on the faculty at Oregon State University. Especially passionate about teaching and working with students, he is also widely published in peer-reviewed academic and practitioner journals. Read more...

Lessons From My Entrepreneurial Journey

Kellogg Alum and Claro Energy Co-founder Kartik Wahi '10 Takes You Through His Entrepreneurial Journey in This Business Standard Article. Read more...

The Nature and Timing of Difficult Questions

Questions within the family business are often trickier to ask than those asked within a non-family business. In August, CFE Professors Justin Craig and Lloyd Shefsky hosted a Lunch and Learn with students from the 1Y and JD/MBA program on campus. Read more...

International Tax Planning

International tax issues are complex for any business, but they present unique challenges - and some dangerous traps - for family-owned businesses. In a recent "Lunch & Learn" session, Ernst & Young's Private Client Services group discussed these issues with students at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, many of whom are involved with family businesses outside the US. Read more...

Family Business Intensive: Exchange for Kellogg Partner School from India

In July 2015, Kellogg's Center for Family Enterprises (CFE) hosted an intensive week of instruction on aspects of family enterprise for 50 MBA students on exchange from the Indian School of Business Master's in Family Business Program (ISBMFaB). This is a unique MBA program at Indian School of Business for students working in their family enterprises. Read more...

EY NextGenners Learn at Kellogg

Kellogg's Center for Family Enterprises (CFE) welcomed a group of 20+ students, ages 20-27, from 14 different countries, for a weeklong course through Ernst & Young's Family Business Center of Excellence called "EY NextGen Academy Advanced Program". With its focus on building a next generation of entrepreneurs, the Kellogg professors' sessions provided much food for thought ... Read more...

KCFE is Growing! Justin Craig.

We are excited to announce that Justin Craig has joined Kellogg as full-time Clinical Professor of Family Enterprise and Co-Director of our Center for Family Enterprises (CFE). "The CFE has come a long way since its formation nearly 17 years ago. As we plan for its continued growth, we are happy to engage new ideas, perspectives and approaches that are both innovative and compatible with ... Read more...

Family Business Wisdom: Graduation 2015

On the morning after graduation, newly minted Kellogg MBA graduates from business-owning families from a dozen different countries--and members representing three generations of their families--attended a Commencement Celebration Talk and Reception hosted by the Center for Family Enterprises. Read more...

2015 Family Enterprise Leadership Award Given to Marc Puig of Barcelona, Spain

On May 6, PUIG Chairman and CEO since 2003, Marc Puig, accepted the 2015 Kellogg Center for Family Enterprise's Family Enterprise Leadership Award in front of an audience of alumni, students, business leaders, other practitioners and faculty at the Allen Center on the Northwestern University campus. Read more...

KFBO: Key Experience for Students from Family Businesses Concludes for the School Year

The 2014-15 MBA student Kellogg Family Business Organization (KFBO) completed its year of meetings in May with visits by Center for Family Enterprises professors John Ward, Lloyd Shefsky and Justin Craig. KFBO is a confidential cohort of students from business-owning families who present monthly to each other about their family enterprises and discuss next steps for the business and/or the individual and his/her role(s) within it. Read more...

Creating a Culture of Change - by John Ward

Managing culture is the most essential and valuable role for the successor leader(s) of a family business. The ability to manage culture is even more critical than the ability to develop strategy, as others can help lead strategy, but a family member must lead culture. Read more...

Professor Ward Speaks at Kellogg's Alumni Club of Mexico City

Professor Ward spoke at Kellogg's Alumni Club of Mexico City. His presentation, Family Business Lessons from 15 Years of Case Writing explored new insights from those cases and how they have influenced our research and teaching. Read more...

Professor Shefsky: Real Homework is Not for Students

Most students complain about homework. When my MBA students at the Kellogg School of Management grumble about assignments, I tell them that what they've called "homework" from elementary school through graduate school isn't actually homework. It was merely practice to develop tools for them to learn to do real homework. Real homework is the work you do when no one gives you the assignment, tells you how much work is enough, or establishes a deadline. Read more...

Brazil Gathering: Professor John L Ward Speaks to Alumni and Guests

On April 18, 2015, Professor John L Ward spoke to a gathering of 22 alumni and their guests in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Read more...

Leadership Lessons from the Top

On April 15, 2015, Kellogg Executive Women's Network (KEWN) held "A Fireside Chat with Powerful Female Business Leaders" featuring two Kellogg alums from business-owning families, attended by 100 female alumni and MBA students. Read more...

George Garvin Brown IV Globe and Mail Interview

A recent Globe and Mail article featured an interview of 2014 KCFE Leadership Award Winner George Garvin Brown IV. The article shares Brown Forman's history and discusses Mr. Brown's strategy after becoming chairman in 2007 after decades of turmoil and consolidation in the spirits industry. Read more...

Radio Flyer Named Top Place to Work 2015.

Crain's Chicago Business named Radio Flyer to its Best Places to Work 2015 list. Robert Pasin ('97) is CEO. Read more...

Lunch and Learn for Kellogg EMBA Students with Interest in Family Business.

In March, the second generation family member and Director of Business Development for Parkway Construction and Associates, founded in 1981 by his father, gathered together a group of 20 fellow EMBA students to talk over lunch about family enterprise and enterprising families. Read more...

Jason Surber of ATF, Inc. is Featured Speaker

This fall, the Center for Family Enterprises introduced MBA student Nidheesh Patel'16 of India to alum Jason Surber'02 of Chicagoland, as their family businesses both serve OEMs in the automotive industries. Read more...

KCFE Awards in UVM Competition 2015

John L. Ward, Clinical Professor of Family Enterprise and Co-Director of the Center for Family Enterprises, was recognized for two cases by the University of Vermont's Family Enterprise Case Writing Competition. Read more...

Professor Shefsky's new book: Invent, Reinvent, Thrive

Professor Shefsky's new book, Invent Reinvent Thrive, tells the stories of the founders of: Starbucks, Costco, Staples, CDW, Charles Schwab & others, and the families that own companies and products such as: Hyatt, Seagram's, General Dynamics, Jet & Ebony Magazines, Radisson, TGIF & others. Read more...

Kellogg Family Enterprise Alumni Panel: Lessons Learned from Working in the Family Business

On July 23, 2014, a panel of four Chicago-area Kellogg alumni from business-owning families spoke on the Evanston Campus to a group of students from the India School of Business Master's in Family Business program in Evanston for a week-long exchange, and to a group of Kellogg students from business families who were in their first quarter of the 1Y MBA program. Read more...

Prof. Shefsky visits the Startup Nation (aka Israel) to talk Innovation.

Professor Lloyd Shefsky with the Kellogg Alumni Club of Israel in Tel Aviv on May 25, 2014. About 30 alumni attended the gathering at SOSA, Tel Aviv's newest joint workspace for tech start-ups. His topic was "Invent, Reinvent, Thrive ... Read more...

Family Enterprise Club @ Berkshire Hathaway

Five MBA students from business families spent a Day at Berkshire Hathaway - including a meeting Warren Buffet, and visits to family businesses that BH owns on Feb 28, 2014. Read more...

KCFE Honors Distiller Brown-Forman

On May 8, 2014, Brown-Forman Presiding Chairman G. Garvin Brown IV and CEO Paul C. Varga accepted the 2014 Kellogg Center for Family Enterprise's Family Enterprise Leadership Award in front of an audience of alumni, students, business leaders, other practitioners and faculty in Allen Center on the Northwestern campus. Read more...

Interests of Kellogg Alumni from Family Businesses

The TOP TEN Interests of our Kellogg Alumni from Business-owning Families, Your Family Enterprise Included, Number of Family Shareholders in the Business, Generation In Your Family Business, Involvement In Your Family Business ... Read more...

CFE Summer Family Business Internship COHORT Program for 2014

For first year MBA students who want to test the waters in their family business, the Center for Family Enterprises (CFE) offers a summer internship cohort program to help them create a summer internship in their own family enterprise in order to evaluate whether or formulate how to join the business after graduation. Read more...

Blood is Thicker Than Recession

When times are tough, it's hard to resist a quick fix. For public companies, that can mean layoffs, leadership shakeups or a sale. But for private family businesses - where employees and managers are relatives and selling out gambles with shared wealth - it's not that simple. Many privately held family businesses take the longer view, and as these businesses emerge from the recent recession, they're finding that it's paying off. Read more...

Fostering Women's Entrepreneurial Leadership in Family Firms: Ten Lessons

Women's potential to lead a firm - whether one started by a family member or a new venture of their own - is still not often enough acknowledged. This article, based on the authors' book Women in Family Business Leadership Roles: Daughters on the Stage (Edward Elgar, 2009), presents ten lessons for family firms which arise from the experience of women in family firms. Read more...