Transparent pay rates create more harmonious owner families

There is no doubt.

If family owners are to maintain healthy relations, it is important that all family members feel that they are being treated fairly when it comes to money.


The family's eldest daughter is the CEO and heir to her father's estate. Her father is currently the head of the board.

The sisters of the CEO, who are passive shareholders, sometimes discuss the older sister's salary:

How much does she get paid - and has the board, headed by their father, considered what her salary means to the family's returns?

This sort of speculation is not about money. Basically, it's not about distrust either. It stems from sibling rivalry and that need for recognition that most families with children are familiar with.

The key difference is that within a family business a rivalry may end up affecting a family's cohesion AND the management of their business.

So what is the solution?


If the younger sisters do not know about their older sister's salary, the board should give that information to them for the sake of family peace and quiet at the management level.

And if the older sister is paid above market level, the difference should be explained.

Contact me if you face challenges concerning salary in your company.

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Eva Fischer Hansen

Eva Fischer Hansen

Her deep insight, yet practical advice, brings new hope and renewal to those working for family- or founder-owned businesses

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