Family Business Succession: What’s Motivation Got to Do With It?
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This is an accepted manuscript of an article published by Sage in Family Business Review on 19/12/2019 available online at https://doi.org/10.1177/0894486519894759
Gagné M, Marwick C, Brun de Pontet S, Wrosch C. Family Business Succession: What’s Motivation Got to Do With It? Family Business Review. 2021;34(2):154-167. Copyright © 2019 The Authors DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0894486519894759
Family businesses represent 80% of global business structures, but the low rate of successful transgenerational succession can have drastic implications for employees and local economies. A 12-year longitudinal study of 89 Canadian family businesses revealed that successors’ confidence and perceptions of incumbent support predicted successor intrinsic motivation to take over the business, which in turn predicted whether the business was successfully transferred 12 years later. Incumbent support and intrinsic motivation mediated the relation between incumbent trust in the successor and successful business succession. This study demonstrates the dual importance of incumbent and successor psychological states in determining succession outcomes.
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