Founder Influence in Family Business: Analyzing Combined Data from Six Countries


  • Robert N. Lussier Springfield College
  • Matthew C. Sonfield Hofstra University


This study analyzed a combined sample of 593 family businesses in the United States, Croatia, Egypt, France, India and Kuwait to determine how the influence of the founder(s) relates to certain important family business managerial characteristics. Statistical analyses indicated that founder influence has significant correlations with the percentage of non-family managers, the use of a "team-management" style of management, the formulation of specific succession plans, time spent in strategic management activities, consideration of going public, and the use of equity rather than debt financing. These findings provide partial support to the few earlier writings and studies involving founder influence in family firms. The implications of these findings for family business owner/managers and for consultants to family businesses are provided, and suggestions for future research are presented.

Author Biography

  • Matthew C. Sonfield, Hofstra University

    with data collection from:

    Mohsen Bagnied, American University of Kuwait

    Mamdouh Farid, Hofstra University, USA

    Loïc Maherault, Ecole de Management, France

    S. Manikutty, Indian Institute of Management, India

    Sanja Pfeifer, Univ. of Josip Juraj Strossmayer Osijek, Croatia

    Louis Verdier, Ecole de Management, France


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How to Cite

Founder Influence in Family Business: Analyzing Combined Data from Six Countries. (2009). Journal of Small Business Strategy (archive Only), 20(1), 103-118.

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