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1-hour educational program = 1 PDC.
1-hour and 15 minute concurrent conference session = 1.25 PDCs.
3-hour e-learning course = 3 PDCs.


Small and family-owned businesses rarely employ first-rate, well-qualified talent in human resources. More typically, business owners must be jacks of all trades and serve as their own accountants, lawyers, business consultants, marketing experts, and HR wizards.

Unfortunately, that does not always work well when business owners embark on planning for retirement or business exits. To help business owners avert problems, this book will offer limited advice on the management, tax and financial, legal, and psychological issues that should be considered when planning retirement or other exits from the business.

This comprehensive approach is unique when compared to the books, articles, and other literature that currently exists on the market. This book takes on a bold and integrated approach. Relevant research combined with the rich experiences of the authors brings this comprehensive, evidence-based approach to action-based approaches for the reader.

Why you should Attend

So, what is preventing you from starting this effort tomorrow? Small and family businesses are the bedrock of all businesses. More people are employed by small and family-owned businesses than by all multinational companies combined. Yet the research on small and family businesses is bleak: fewer than one-third of small business owners in the United States can afford to retire.

Only 40 percent of small businesses have a workable disaster plan in case of the sudden death or disability of the owner, and only 42 percent of small businesses in the United States have a succession plan. Fewer than 11 percent of family-owned businesses make it to the third generation beyond the founder. Lack of succession planning is the second most common reason for small business failure.

Areas Covered in the Session

  • Deciding What to Do: Life and Career Planning for Small Business Owners and Family Leaders
  • Considering Your Choices
  • Planning for Succession in Small and Family Business
  • Planning the Strategy for Succession
  • Recruiting a Successor from Inside, Outside, or Utilizing Other Options for the Organization
  • Special Issues in Small and Family Business Succession Planning
  • Family-Owned Business Dynamics and Politics
  • Questions and Answers about Psychological Issues in Small and Family Business Succession
  • Questions and Answers about Legal Issues in Small and Family Business Succession
  • Questions and Answers about Tax and Accounting Issues in Small and Family Business Succession
  • Questions and Answers about Financial Planning Issues in Small and Family Business Succession
  • Questions and Answers about Talent Management Issues in Small and Family Business Succession
  • Transitioning the Business and Executing the Plan

Who Will Benefit

  • Owners
  • Senior Leaders
  • Function Professionals of Small and Family Owned Businesses

Speaker Profile

Dr.William J. Rothwel, Ph.D., DBA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, RODC, FLMI, CPTD Fellow, is President of Rothwell & Associates, Inc., Rothwell & Associates, LLC, and Rothwell & Associates Korea. As a consultant he has worked with over fifty multinational companies and countless governments and nonprofits globally. In addition to the three consulting companies he founded, he also founded three small businesses (a vacation rental home company employing three people; a personal care home for the elderly licensed for fifty beds employing twenty-seven people; and an eighteen-unit motel employing five people).

As a Distinguished Professor at Penn State University, University Park, where he has taught for 30 years, he is co-Professor-in-Charge of an online and onsite academic program that offers a Master degree in Organization Development and a Ph.D. in Workforce Education and Development with an emphasis in Talent Development/Organization Development. Before joining Penn State in 1993, he had over 15 years of experience in HR, Talent Development, and Organization Development leadership at the executive level in government (Illinois Office of the Auditor General) and in a wholly-owned subsidiary of a multinational company, #48 on the Fortune 500 list (American Brands, owners of Jim Beam, American Tobacco, and others). With 50 years of work experience in HR, OD and Talent Development, he is known widely for his practical approach. Having published 159 books in the Human Resources field, he was awarded Penn State University’s Graduate Faculty Teaching Award in 2004 (only one given per year on Penn State’s 24 campuses), the Association for Talent Development’s (ATD) Distinguished Contribution to Workplace Learning and Performance Award in 2011, was given the Walter Zeller Award for Service by UNICEF and Kiwanis in 2013, was awarded the Organization Development Network’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2022, was awarded Penn State University’s highest award for international work in 2022, and was inducted into the International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame in 2023. He has conducted training and taught in universities globally-including 83 trips to China and 32 trips to Singapore.

His recent books since 2020 include Mastering the Art of Process Consultation and Virtual Group Coaching Simulation (2023); Successful Supervisory Leadership: Exerting Positive Influence While Leading People (2023); Transformational Coaching (2023); Succession Planning for Small and Family Businesses (2022); High-Performance Coaching for Managers (2022); Rethinking Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (2022); Organization Development (OD) Interventions: Executing Effective Organizational Change (2021); Virtual Coaching to Improve Group Relationships: Process Consultation Reimagined (2021); The Essential HR Guide for Small Business and Start Ups (2020); Increasing Learning and Development’s Impact Through Accreditation (2020); Adult Learning Basics, 2nd ed. (2020); and, Workforce Development: Guidelines for Community College Professionals, 2nd ed. (2020).