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The father’s role in supporting the son’s business knowledge development process in Vietnamese family businesses

Thanh Trung Pham (University of Gloucestershire School of Business and Management, Cheltenham, UK)
Robin Bell (University of Worcester, Worcester, UK)
David Newton (University of Gloucestershire School of Business and Management, Cheltenham, UK)

Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies

ISSN: 2053-4604

Article publication date: 22 October 2018

Issue publication date: 22 May 2019

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Abstract

Purpose

Many family businesses do not survive into the second generation. A common reason put forward for this is poor succession planning for the second generation. This paper is designed with the aim to explore the role of the father in supporting the son’s business knowledge and development in Vietnamese family businesses.

Design/methodology/approach

This research adopted an inductive qualitative approach using multiple face-to-face semi-structured interviews with five father–son succession pairs. The interview participants were a cross section of Vietnamese family businesses, where the father–son pair was involved in the process of business knowledge transfer and the succession process was at an advanced stage.

Findings

The results suggest that the father plays different roles at different stages of the son’s business knowledge development process. In particular, the father acts as an example during the son’s childhood; a supporter to encourage the son to gain more business knowledge from both formal education and working experience outside the family business; a mentor and trouble-shooter after the son joins the family business as a full-time employee; and as an advisor after the son becomes the leader of the firm.

Originality/value

Most Vietnamese family businesses are still operating under the control of the first generation, and as a result, research into the succession process in Vietnam can help to provide valuable insights. Furthermore, existing research into the role of the predecessor in the whole process from the successor’s childhood until the end of the succession process is ambiguous and requires further research to clarify this research gap.

Keywords

Citation

Pham, T.T., Bell, R. and Newton, D. (2019), "The father’s role in supporting the son’s business knowledge development process in Vietnamese family businesses", Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies, Vol. 11 No. 2, pp. 258-276. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEEE-01-2018-0006

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited