Live, Online Program

Making Family Councils More Effective

September 19, 20, 26 & 27, 2024

Daily 11:30 am – 3:00 pm ET

An Interactive Workshop on Family Governance

Do you want to elevate your Family Council’s performance? Are you looking for new strategies to keep your family united, decisive, and engaged with your family enterprise?

Join us for the annual program, Making Family Councils More Effective: a four-session, live, online workshop designed to help Family Councils worldwide be more strategic and valuable to their families.



You will come away from this program with the tools you need to take your Family Council to the next level. During the program, you will experience interactive, live presentations by faculty who are international experts in family governance and family enterprise. You will have lively discussions and knowledge-sharing opportunities with participant families from Family Councils around the world. You will create a concrete plan to strengthen your Family Council.

This is an advanced program, designed for Family Councils that are beyond the “startup stage.” It is for Family Councils that have already done the hard work of launching family governance, and have some experience organizing their family and setting up the mechanics of their Family Council. These Family Councils are now looking to keep the momentum going, enhance the work of their Family Council, and benchmark with other Family Councils.

Whether your Family Council has a couple years or a couple decades of experience, this program will help you refresh your thinking and strengthen your Family Council’s activities so your family governance is positioned for success in the future.

Key Program Takeaways


Participants in this program are ready to learn new strategies and approaches to address their Family Council challenges, such as these:

  • “Our family has entrusted our Family Council to do important work on their behalf. What can we do to add value, show results, and have a meaningful impact on our family enterprise’s overall success?”
  • “Our family is growing and spreading out geographically. How can we keep our family connected to one another?”
  • “How can we keep our family engaged and contributing to our enterprise?”
  • “Change is coming in our family, our industry, our leadership, our assets. How can our Family Council best lead the family through it?”
  • “What should we do to prepare our family members with the knowledge and skills they’ll need, and develop a pipeline of talent in the family to serve on the board, in ownership, and other important roles?”
  • “We know we need some policies and rules to help organize and guide our family. But, what exactly should we develop, and how do we enforce them? How have other families approached this effectively?”

You might also find yourself looking inward at your Family Council’s functioning, seeking ways to improve how your Council is designed and operates.

Perhaps you’ve wondered:

  • “There’s so much to do! How can we organize ourselves internally as a Council and marshal the resources to get it all done without burning out?”
  • “Do we have the right people on our Family Council? How do we attract more family members to the table?”
  • “How do we build teamwork on our Family Council?”
  • “The Family Council is just one part of our governance system. When, what, and how should we be coordinating with other governance groups? How can we make sure that the Family Council’s point of view is heard?”
  • “How should our Family Council coordinate with our Family Office?”

We invite you to this unique opportunity to connect with a thoughtful community of family governance leaders, members, and experts from around the world. Join us to learn how to make your Family Council even more dynamic, proactive, and effective.

Videos about the Program

“By attending the program, I gained a comprehensive analysis of how to maximize the benefits of a family council. There were so many takeaways about how to improve the effectiveness of our council. The materials are of the nature and quality that they can be revisited regularly to find even more useful takeaways depending on the matters the council is facing.”

Past Participant

Making Family Councils More Effective


  1. An action plan with concrete next steps to help my Family Council become even more effective
  2. A framework and template to develop an annual strategic plan for my Family Council
  3. New strategies and practices to strengthen family unity, develop family talent, and build family engagement
  4. Research-based insights into how families and family enterprises are changing in today’s world, and what my Family Council can do to prepare and lead my family through these changes
  5. Best practices for the design and functioning of Family Councils in mature, growing, and complex family enterprises
  6. Ways to elevate the stature of my Family Council within my family enterprise ecosystem
  7. Examples of how other Family Councils organize themselves and deliver results for the family
  8. A community of Family Council members from around the world to exchanges ideas and problem-solve with
  9. Live interaction with the faculty, who are international thought leaders and experts in family enterprise, governance, family relationships, and talent development
  10. One individualized coaching session with a faculty member, within the month following the program

Who will I be learning from?

This program is led by a faculty team with deep, global expertise in family governance and family enterprise success.

You’ll also learn from guest speakers who bring their firsthand experience leading their Family Councils––some of the most effective Family Councils around the world. They will share their experiences, both what has worked and what hasn’t.

Finally, you’ll learn a lot from the other participants––those in the trenches of family governance work, just like you. This program has ample opportunities for you to share knowledge and ask questions of other participants.

How is the program structured?

Through decades of experience, CFEG knows how to deliver engaging and effective live, online education programs. That is why this program includes a variety of learning methods and activities to keep you engaged, thinking deeply, and enjoying the experience:

  • Live, interactive presentations by faculty
  • Stories from other enterprising families from around the world
  • Interactive case study discussions
  • Large group dialogue and Q&A sessions
  • Daily small group breakout discussions with other participants
  • Individual and family group reflection, analysis, and exercises

I’m still not sure if this program is right for me. What else can you tell me?

Periodically revisiting your governance design and refreshing your plans and activities is a useful exercise for any governance group.

As complexity in the world accelerates, your Family Council needs to keep up with the changes—both inside and outside your family enterprise. Your Family Council will benefit from this program if you are experiencing any of the following issues in your family enterprise:

  • A significant upcoming leadership or ownership change at any level of your enterprise
  • An upcoming fundamental change to your business, investments, or ownership structure
  • Growing tension or friction among groups within your family (e.g. between generations, branches, owners/non-owners, geographic locations, etc.)
  • Family members or shareholders are not aligned and do not speak with one voice
  • Family members or shareholders are passive or disengaged
  • The “bench” of family talent ready to step into important roles has been depleted
  • Family members are not excited or motivated by the family enterprise, and do not contribute or participate much in family-wide events or meetings
  • It’s a challenge to recruit qualified family members to serve on the Family Council or other councils, committees, or boards
  • Family Council service is not as meaningful or as enjoyable as you hoped it would be

This program provides space to address these transitions and challenges, and offers concrete advice for how a Family Council can lead the family through them.

Register Here

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“Faculty presentations and discussions at the program by John Davis and CFEG was impressive and impactful as always. I took away many gems, including an urgency to refresh our family mission and vision, a deeper understanding and better perspective on family unity, and ideas for enhancing our governance and family owner mindset.”

Past Participant

Making Family Councils More Effective


Professor John A. Davis
Founder and Chairman, Cambridge Institute for Family Enterprise

John A. Davis is a globally recognized pioneer and authority on family enterprise, family wealth, and the family office. He is a researcher, educator, author, architect of the field’s most impactful conceptual frameworks, and advisor to leading families around the world. He leads the family enterprise programs at MIT Sloan. He is the author of Enduring Advantage: Collected Essays on Family Enterprise, Next Generation Success and Generation to Generation: Life Cycles of the Family Business, a preeminent work in the family enterprise field.


Andrew Hier, CFEG

Andrew Hier
Fellow, Cambridge Institute for Family Enterprise

Andrew Hier is an advisor to business families globally on issues related to shareholder relationships, ownership strategies, succession and next generation issues, and governance of the family, owners and business. He is a Fellow at Cambridge Institute for Family Enterprise where he teaches and facilitates in family business programs around the world. He is active in the Family Firm Institute, the premiere association of advisors serving families, and in 2020 he received the prestigious Interdisciplinary Achievement Award for outstanding achievement in the advancement of interdisciplinary services to business families.


Rachel Krol

Rachel Krol
Fellow, Cambridge Institute for Family Enterprise

Rachel Krol advises family-owned enterprises on the strategies for growing, unifying, and sustaining their enterprises into the next generation. As an attorney, mediator, coach, and professor of negotiation and dispute resolution, Rachel specializes in facilitating difficult conversations and constructive processes for building alignment. She advises families on building family and owner teams, family communication, conflict resolution, and negotiation. She also assists families with implementing effective family and owner governance systems and processes. Her work helps families and ownership groups build their capacity for effectively managing their relationships, communication, and conflicts.


Suzanne Glazer

Suzanne Glazer
Fellow, Cambridge Institute for Family Enterprise

Suzanne Glazer advises individuals in the family enterprise system to develop effective and inspiring career and life plans and, more broadly, to help individuals be successful in all dimensions of their lives. She takes a holistic view of one’s life by understanding their dreams and goals, relationships, resources, and motivations. Assessments are used (both in-person and online) as appropriate to gain a deeper understanding of one’s personality, and career and life interests. Suzanne partners with each family member to create a development plan that targets their own unique strengths and challenges.

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“This program provided a huge toolbox and comprehensive framework for understanding, building, assessing, and enhancing a high-functioning family council and family enterprise.”

Past Participant

Making Family Councils More Effective


Who will benefit from attending?

This program is tailored for mature Family Councils that have moved beyond the “startup stage.” Typically, these are Family Councils in sibling and cousin family enterprise systems that have been in existence for at least three years. Some past participants have had Family Councils anywhere from one year to over twenty years!

The program is open to families with operating companies, a family office, and/or a private investment company — any of which are controlled by a sibling or cousin ownership group. Participants join from all corners of the world.

Individual participants have a variety of roles within their family enterprise, including:

  • Current Family Council Leaders and Members who want to improve their effectiveness
  • Future Family Council Leaders and Members who want to prepare for their role and deepen their understandings
  • Leaders and Members of Owners Councils, Family Offices, Boards, and Senior Executive Teams who coordinate with the Family Council and wish to better support the efforts of the Family Council
  • Non-family members who support or work closely with the Family Council, Family Office, or other governance forums

The program is particularly valuable for incoming Family Council Leaders as they begin their leadership tenure. When leaders attend with other Family Council members who they will be working closely with, teamwork is strengthened and useful planning is done to map the Council’s strategic goals and activities for the coming years.

Teams of two or more people are encouraged to attend together in order to get the most out of the discussion-based, problem-solving approach of this program. Non-family members may attend only if accompanied by a family member.



Before June 21, 2024:

  • $2,500 USD for the first participant, and
  • $2,100 USD for each additional person from the same family or company

After June 21, 2024:

  • $3,000 USD for the first participant, and
  • $2,600 USD for each additional person from the same family or company

Space is limited so register today.


If this program is of interest to you, but the time zone prevents you from participating live, please contact us and let us know which time zone you are in. If there is sufficient interest, we will gladly explore repeating the program in another time zone or region.


Register Here

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