Staying Power

Editor’s Note
Kimberley Singletary
Illustration by Paddy Mills

Our November issue is always our family business issue, and this year, in a kind of celebration of the Day of the Dead, or Dia de Los Muertos — which is actually a multi-day holiday traditionally celebrated by people of Mexican heritage on Nov. 1 and 2 — it seemed fitting to talk about succession planning… Plus, it happens to be one of the biggest issues affecting the longevity of a family-owned business.

In this issue we’re excited to share thoughts and tips on how to succeed in this often-tricky venture from a variety of sources, including a Q&A with the man responsible for making sure the legacy of a beloved New Orleans Saints player lives on and continues to make a difference, and a specialist in valuing businesses — a critical part of succession planning.

I also had the wonderful opportunity to talk to leaders of three very different family-run businesses who are all at different points in their succession story. It’s often reported that only about 30 to 40% of businesses make the successful transition to a second generation, so these businesses are beating the odds and, in one case, even planning for the future with their fourth generation. Each was kind enough to share what they have learned in the hopes of helping others navigate their own path.

Outside of succession planning, we’re also excited to share the stories of other local organizations with strong family ties, including Wayne Jacob’s Smokehouse in LaPlace in our Dining column, a peek at the new headquarters of Son of a Saint in our “Great Workspaces,” and the tragic, but beautiful story of a family continuing the entrepreneurial dreams of their son in this month’s “Why Didn’t I Think of That?” And to finish it all off, there’s our Biz 500 person of the month, Vance Vaucresson, the third-generation head of Vaucresson Sausage, in operation in New Orleans’s 7th Ward since 1899.

New Orleans is full of so many wonderful stories of family businesses that have become staples in our community. If you have a story to share, we’d love to hear it. Feel free to reach out to editorial@bizneworleans.com.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours and thanks for reading!

Kimberley Singletary
Managing Editor
Kimberley@BizNewOrleans.com