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Motives and Outcomes in Family Business Succession Planning



The family business succession planning literature routinely assumes two main motives on the part of incumbents: family business continuity across generations and family harmony. The cross-tabulation of these motives produces a typology consisting of four distinct combinations of motives for succession planning. In turn, these combinations suggest four outcomes of succession planning, framed as institutionalization, implosion, imposition, and individualization. The first two outcomes—institutionalization and implosion—are fully elucidated in the literature. The other two—imposition and individualization—are routinely overlooked. The proposed typology highlights the repertoire of motives that inform succession planning, and how they promote distinct succession outcomes.