CFEG online learning


Should I Join the Family Business?

A Roadmap for Deciding

$399 USD

This course guides you through a methodical, decision process as you explore whether to join your family business for your career.

You don’t need to make this decision about the next chapter of your life alone.

Professor John Davis guides you through an introspective, analytical, and careful process to arrive at the right career decision for you and your family business.

Course Overview

Your career decision feels complex because it is. Deciding whether to join your family business for your career is a significant life decision.

The stakes of this decision often feel high for all involved—for you, your family, and your family company. As you have likely experienced, professional decisions in a family business tend to blend together with other factors such as family relationship dynamics, emotions, expectations, and your own personal aspirations. There are plenty of thorny issues to consider, opinions to weigh, and goals to honor.

How do you sort through the complexity and reach a decision? And then, how do you effectively communicate your decision to others?

You are here because you want to think critically about this life decision and make the right career choice. You want to do this with intentionality and thoughtfulness.

This self-paced course leads you through a decision process that is analytical, respectful, and where you take responsibility for this life choice. Use this course to do a full analysis of your situation, and make a clear, well-reasoned decision about whether to join the family business.

Elevate Your Approach to This Career and Life Decision

Gain clarity about the next stage of your life by using our methods to sort through the complexity, think deeply about your options, and make an intentional decision.


Know Yourself

Identify what drives you at this stage in your life. Reflect on your options, interests, capabilities, aspirations, motivations, and more.

Understand Professional Life for a Family Employee

Explore what life would be like if you were to join the company. Learn the special circumstances you would need to manage as a family employee, the career paths available to you, and the expectations of family employees.

Analyze Your Family Enterprise

Deeply understand the ecosystem you would be joining. Analyze your family business, your family dynamics, and ways you could contribute.

Assess Compatibility

Evaluate whether joining the family business is a good fit for you. Assess the level of compatibility between you and a career in your family business in 3 pivotal areas.


Take the Responsibility for this life choice. Use the careful analysis you've done in this course, and make an informed decision about whether you will join the family business.

Communicate Your Decision

Plan your next steps. Develop a plan to communicate your decision in a respectful and effective manner, and prepare your action plan.

Enroll in the Course

Self-paced course (approximately 5 hours)
Learning materials, videos, readings, and resources from the leading expert

Personalized digital notebook
In-depth analysis and interactive exercises

Access to private discussion forum
For students of this course to exchange ideas and share experiences with next generation members from around the world

$399 USD


"I appreciated the expertise, content, and homework assignments. Everything had tremendous value."

Family Member

3rd generation family business, U.S.
"Now you can launch the next stage of your career and life, content that you made this decision thoroughly and carefully. Now onto living a fulfilling life and having an impactful career — whether inside or outside the family business."

About the Course

Enroll in the Course

Next Generation Family Enterprise