“Castle on the Hill”, Common Interest and Core Values

Dunnotar Castle
Macieklew (2007), Dunnotar Castle [Online Image]. Retrieved August 21, 2017

I don’t know what it is about music, but it always stirs my thinking. The Ed Sheeren song “Castle on the Hill” brings back memories of when I was a child, growing up on a tobacco farm in Southern Ontario. When I went away to school (if you can call going to Western really being away), I couldn’t wait to go home, I couldn’t wait to get to our family “Castle on the Hill”.

I was younger then,
Take me back to when”

“And I miss the way
You make me feel
And it's real
When we watched the sunset over the castle on the hill”

“But these people raised me
And I can't wait to go home

So in your family business transition, what is your “Castle on the Hill”? Do we start there? Is there a common interest? Are we only paying lip service to a common interest? Do we make sure our core values are aligned? What are our rules around respect, trust and communications?

Maybe we shouldn’t rush to see the lawyer or the accountant. We should meet as a family and document these things in a Family Charter or Family Participation Plan. After this documentation is complete then as a member in a family business you really say “I can’t wait to go home.”

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