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Determining the contributory factors to successful succession and post-succession performance of family-owned SMEs in South Eastern Nigeria



Objective: This study seeks to determine the contributory factors to successful succession and post-succession performance. And the role of these factors in the post-succession financial and non-financial performance of family-owned SMEs in South Eastern Nigeria.

Research Design & Methods: The adopted quantitative methodology is interview. In each of the purposively selected 25 family-owned SMEs, the incumbent, a sibling of the incumbent and a top level manager were interviewed. In all, 75 respondents were interviewed. The transcribed interviews were subjected to thematic content analysis.

Findings: The contributory factors to successful succession are the characteristics of succession planning, the incumbent, the potential successor, and the family-owned SME. The factors that contribute to the post-succession performance are the culture of making succession planning a continuous process, and the characteristics of the incumbent and the family-owned SME. These factors ensure that children of the incumbent in the SME become more active so as to be selected as potential successors.

Contribution & Value Added: The study identified the contributory factors to successful succession and post-succession performance of the family-owned SMEs. To achieve successful succession and post-succession performance, the incumbents should inculcate the characteristics of these factors into their potential successors. Also, these characteristics should be made part of the culture of the family-owned SMEs.


Family-Owned SMEs, Successful Succession, Post-Succession, Financial Performance, Non-Financial Performance


Author Biography

Kenneth Chukwujioke Agbim

Kenneth Chukwujioke Agbim is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Management, University of Nigeria, Enugu, Nigeria. He has M.Sc. in Development Studies, MBA in Management and M.Sc. in Management. His research interests are in the areas of strategic entrepreneurship, family business development and business ethics.


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