Succession Planning -Part 9: Family Member Needs a Job.

Your Brother-In-Law (or Cousin or …) Needs A Job?

One of the most common problems in a family business is the hiring of relatives who do not have talent. But what are you to do when your sister or another close relative says, “Bob needs a job badly”? The emotional aspect of such family relationships is hard to fight. But try to go into it with your eyes open. It will be hard to fire Bob if he turns out to cost you more money than his presence is worth, that is why in Succession Planning -Part 9: Family Member Needs a Job we discuss guidelines when hiring family.

 The main thing is to recognize the talent or lack of it. Suppose your brother-in-law, for example, has little or no ability as far as your company is concerned, Perhaps you can put him in a job where in spite of his weaknesses he can make a contribution and not disturb other employees.

 The major concern is not necessarily the relative but how he or she affects other employees. In some cases, a relative can demoralize the organization by his or her dealing with other employees. For example, he or she may loaf on the job, avoid unpleasant tasks, take special privileges, and make snide remarks about you and other relatives.

 If you are stuck with such a relative, try putting him or her in a job where he or she will have minimum contact with other employees, out of the mainstream of decision making. For instance brother-in-law Bob might be placed in a sales office in another city some distance from the company’s headquarters where he will be under the supervision of a top producer. Another alternative is to change his attitudes by formal or informal education.

 The key is to see that the non-talented relative does not affect the relationship that you, the manager, have with other members of your staff. Other employees will respect you for keeping relatives in line.

 Strange things sometimes happen. There is always the chance that the non-talented relative may be under your direction and turn into an asset for your company.

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