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Generations of family businesses have been declining. Many cultures and languages have the old adage "shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations." The assumption is that the decline is caused by a generation gap where generations become less motivated and less capable of leading the business. A decline in the entrepreneurial activity of family businesses is not inevitable. Families should not focus ongaps between generations, instead they should focus on aligning expectations and needs. Efforts to provide opportunities for the next generation to act entrepreneurially will increase the willingness of the next generation to take action. An entrepreneurial spirit doesn't have to be one of the different generations.

During the height of the Pandemic, I conducted research to understand how business families reacted to the changes in the market. The full analysis of that research is incomplete, but one statistic stood out to me. In order to better understand how business families were using entrepreneurship as a tool to address pandemic related changes, I asked family business leaders what percentage of their current sales came from innovations they had made. The World Health Organization declared Covid-19 a Pandemic in the summer of 2020.