Portuguese and Brazilian Family Business: in Between Urgency and Delay Perceptions in the Succession Process


  • Ana Paula Marques Associate Professor, PhD of Sociology (University of Minho/Portugal), Senior Researcher at the Communication and Society Research Centre (CECS)
  • Leandro Alves da Silva




Portugal, Brazil, family business, succession, socialisation


Family business has been the focus of several studies over the last two decades and its relevance has been supported by the interdisciplinary perspectives in the fields of management, entrepreneurship, economics, psychology, and sociology. Despite that, there is still insufficient knowledge about the key role of family influences in the business, namely the intergenerational management succession, its planning and effectiveness. According to a recent research focused on the entrepreneurial succession in Portugal (AEP, 2011), 50 percent of family businesses are not passed on to the second generation and only 20 percent reach the third generation. In fact, business succession planning has been identified as one of the most challenging steps in the life of the family firm, both in maintaining the competiveness of the business, and in overcoming intra/ inter family conflicts. Nonetheless, resistance to succession, relationship founder/ successor, planning of succession, and type of organisational culture, among others, explain how executive succession is one of the most important and hardest tasks in organisational life (Zahra, 2005). This paper will be supported mainly by qualitative data, taking into account the main results from the project “Roadmap for Portuguese Family Businesses” (NORTE2020/FEDER) developed in Portugal (Marques, 2018) and in Brazil (Silva, 2018), which analyses in-depth interviews conducted to Portuguese (N 23) and Brazilian (N 11) founders/managers/owners. In the present article we wish to discuss the main management challenges of a family business, particularly the importance of succession preparation and the role of the family in the socialisation of the second (third or subsequent) generation.




How to Cite

Marques, A. P., & Leandro Alves da Silva. (2020). Portuguese and Brazilian Family Business: in Between Urgency and Delay Perceptions in the Succession Process. European Journal of Social Sciences, 3(2), 24–37. https://doi.org/10.26417/940lth96j