The Family Business Advisory Team: Is Your Business Set Up for Success?

Do you understand the impact your family dynamics have on your business? How can family conflict derail your business exit? Like all businesses, family businesses must have a cross-functional team of advisors to help manage their value prior to and during a transition of ownership. Who is on your exit planning team? And more importantly, are they prepared to help you harvest the most value out of your business during the exit?

The EPI Wisconsin Chapter is hosting an in-person and virtual event on Tuesday, September 13, 2022, 8:30 am-9:30 am CST to discuss forming a solid family business transition team. 

Don’t Get Derailed While Planning Your Business Evolution

This year’s theme for EPI Wisconsin Chapter is “Maximizing Your Greatest Asset – Your Business.” The 2022 chapter meetings and events will focus on this theme throughout the year and culminate in our annual owner’s forum in November. The September chapter meeting is Don’t Get Derailed While Planning Your Business Evolution. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Networking with other members
  • A business psychologist will discuss how to not let family dynamics derail your business evolution
  • Hear from an insurance specialist on the key components of an insurance review when buying or selling
  • Learn from a business consultant on how to prepare for the due diligence phase of your business evolution
  • An attorney will discuss governance procedures to avoid litigation

Due to the importance of this topic, the EPI Wisconsin chapter is hosting this event for advisors and owners in three locations simultaneously. 

Location 1: Westmoor Country Club, 400 S Moorland Rd, Brookfield, WI 53005

Location 2: Johnson Bank, 5201 E Terrace Dr, Madison, WI 53718

Location 3: Zoom (Virtual)

Register for the chapter event here. 

Who Is On An Owner’s Team?

Business owners work with a variety of advisors to ensure their business is not only successful but provides a significant financial impact for all stakeholders. An owner should work with a cross-functional team of advisors during their exit. A cross-functional team will provide owners with experts in each facet of their business exit. Whether they need help organizing financial statements, assistance with due diligence and estate planning, or a broker for their sale, each member of an exit planning team provides owners with support in key steps of their exit. Meet the owner’s exit planning team members and learn how they impact an owner during their transition. 

Meet each member of the exit planning team in our new infographic.

Learn from Industry Experts

The EPI Wisconsin Chapter event will feature a panel of five professional business advisors. This panel includes two Certified Exit Planning Advisors, a Licensed Business Psychologist, an Investment Specialist, and a seasoned Trial Lawyer. 

Martha Sullivan

A one-time information systems consultant turned her most brilliant act of rebellion into a career as a CPA, CFO, COO, and profit & value growth strategist, consulting to hundreds of clients and colleagues over the past three decades.

Martha Sullivan, President of Provenance Hill Consulting, LLC and Consultant with The Family Business Consulting Group, founded her firm with one purpose: to help business owners build, buy and sell strong, profitable, companies that are attractive enough for someone to want to buy it when the owner decides to chase their next adventure. It’s not just a transaction at that point; it’s a transformation that impacts the owner, their family, and the company’s stakeholders.

Maximizing the value and transferability of a company requires finding the right balance between its rewards and risks. Profitability isn’t enough. It doesn’t happen overnight. It demands a conscious, disciplined effort to integrate the needs of the business, the family, and the individual. It’s not exit planning. It’s strategic life planning.

Leesa Gilliam

As a Vice President and Senior Relationship Strategist, Leesa Gilliam coordinates a team to assist you and your family in pursuing the peace of mind that comes from knowing that the important aspects of your financial life are thoughtfully orchestrated. Through a dynamic discovery process, Leesa is able to help build and maintain a thorough understanding of your needs and priorities. Helping you and your family with the successful achievement of your goals and aspirations in our primary focus. Leesa has the knowledge, experience, and desire to help bring about successful outcomes as your trusted advisor.

Prior to joining PNC Private Bank, Leesa was a Director and Private Wealth Advisor at BMO Wealth Management. She has over 25 years’ experience in the Financial and Wealth Management industry.

Robert Young

Dr. Robert Young is a co-founder and licensed business psychologist with Ascend Talent Strategies, Inc. For over twenty years, Bob has delivered leadership assessment services designed to help his clients identify internal and external candidates that fit the role requirements, the cultural context, and potential future roles. He also facilities team effectiveness assessment and training, organizational effectiveness assessment and development, succession planning, and he also offers very action-orientated, practically focused executive coaching services. 

He assists private equity firms and client organizations with M&A due diligence and integration. He helps his clients plan and execute their vision, mission, and strategic goals using proprietary cloud-based software and a disciplined execution process that has been shown to raise collaboration and accountability across the organization. Bob has a special interest in assisting family owned and operated businesses with generational transitions, succession planning, and growing their family legacy.

Cheryl Tesch

As an IAG Wealth Partners Insurance Specialist, Cheryl Tesch works closely with the IAG advisors and their clients to analyze existing insurance coverage and offer enhanced solutions where appropriate.

Her passion for working with business owners began when she attended a meeting with a client, his financial advisor, attorney, and another insurance professional, and discovered numerous holes in the business succession plan, particularly when it came to his family and the team of key employees that he had developed while growing his business. It was then that she set out to learn more about how insurance plays a key role in a business succession plan. Her desire for learning fuels her passion to educate her clients.

David J. Sisson

David J. Sisson is a shareholder in the firm’s Litigation and Labor and Employment practices. David solves problems that arise when critical personal business relationships end. These include disputes involving departing key employees and shareholders in closely held corporations and others who owe fiduciary duties. Controversies often develop at the conclusion of these relationships regarding what may be owned by, or owed to, the respective parties. A departing employee may try to establish a competing business capitalizing on relationships with customers, vendors, and co-workers, as well as valuable intellectual property.

Special issues arise when separations involve business partners, particularly when the business is family-owned and supports multiple generations of interested and involved family members. That expertise in sensitive and complex family issues extends to representing fiduciaries and beneficiaries in contested trust and estate matters and fiduciary litigation. Whenever possible, David helps clients develop creative theories to avoid litigation and achieve amicable separations even after threats and provocative actions have occurred, including all forms of alternative dispute resolution.

Discover if the Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA) Program is right for you. Request information about CEPA here. 

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