It presents the experience of using the case study research design in two real-world family businesses, in which, one is our family business which is reaching its third (3rd) generation with me. The report describes the challenges that are faced and state the lessons learned in this experience, that, the case studies are very active and useful aspects of the study, and that the participant or persons in the case studies, influences the research conduct. It offers a critical review and personal reflection with regards to whether and why the research approach applies to the dissertation in question.
All research designs, irrespective of where there being applied, have their merits and demerits. Therefore, when choosing a research method/design to be used in a given study, there are many factors that need to be considered. While undertaking a dissertation, several approaches may be considered including evaluation of research requirements and then developing a research plan. This was the approach that preceded the selection of the research approach, the case study method.
In this case, the dissertation topic was “What are the Key Considerations for Long Term Success in Large Family Businesses?” This dissertation explored the challenges that family businesses experience with regard to the continuation of the business for the generations that follow. This is because the number of family members keeps increasing and not all have the same set of required skills and knowledge for working in the family business or getting involved in the family business decisions. Additionally, the research focuses on how personal interests, family interests, and business interests are reconciled, specifically, with regards to how finances are managed, decisions are made, employee evaluation and performance measures are carried out, and new hiring is done. Given that focus is more on relationships, emotions, and interests of family members with regards to the family business, qualitative research techniques are employed (Darke et al. 1998). These techniques, according to Myers (2009) were preferred because of the research’s goal and purpose, like search, the case study approach was deemed ideal.