by Ann Zuraw | Featured Contributor
The lessons I’ve learned growing up in a successful family real estate business are countless. (How you define “successful” is a discussion for another day.) Today as a business owner myself; I realize luck had nothing to do with it!
My family worked diligently to master the complex challenges and intricate details of a successful working family business. They enforced certain conditions and boundaries, created a fair and transparent family board and put business before family to ensure their success.
My family understood that with knowledge, perseverance, and commitment from each family member, they would build a business that would survive for many generations (the company started in 1928). They enforced ethical business practices and made business matters a priority over family issues – this rule was never debated, just a fact.
The real estate development company owned by my family had a simple rule: No individual was to personally profit from the business, and all revenues were reinvested, there were no dividends, no payouts, no loans. All capital gains were to be reinvested to avoid taxation. The long-term goal was to build the company and develop the land.
Looking back at how our family managed the business with an infrastructure, which was instrumental.We evaluated the business performance using investment measures, professional board meetings following Robert’s Rules of Order, and with the transparency of all information. The culmination of the years and generations of hard work and perseverance was the vote sale of the company in 2007.
Ann Zuraw, Founder, and Fearless Leader/President of Zuraw Financial Advisors, a financial planning and investment management firm based in Greensboro, North Carolina serving families in all stages of life.
“Never Give Up, and it is Never Too Late to Learn.” —this is Ann Zuraw’s (AZ) mantra.
Our goal at ZFA is to encourage women to take responsibility for their finances. As a Chartered Financial Analyst, CFA ®, Certified Financial Planner, CFP ® and MBA- and entrepreneur, Ann built www.ZurawFinancialAdvisors.com as a Registered Investment Advisor with assets under management of $190 million.
Ann served for 25 years as the only female on the board of her family’s real estate company. She witnessed firsthand the difficulties of running and expanding a business, along with the hardships of balancing family dynamics through economic ups and downs. At ZFA we believe that everyone can and should understand their finances and investment opportunities whether you have $5000 or $5 million.
Ann utilizes her blog www.ChicksChatandChange.com to educate women about improving their financial life whether dealing with aging parents, kids, partners or just controlling their spending.
Born in New Orleans and currently living in Greensboro, North Carolina, Ann lived in NYC, San Francisco & Oakland, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota. My family includes 3 young adult kids who like it or not are always learning about money and—2 English Bulldogs who refuse to listen…