The family business is a powerful aspirational trope across the world. In many ways it is the foundation stone for trade: families generate tradition which in turn generates trade, from whence economies, GDP and green shield stamps are borne.

The ‘family’ though has become a bit of a problematic concept: the wholesome, glowing Walton family, the extended Forsyth family and the 28 generations of your DNA who all live in a vault under your staircase have all been superseded by the atomised, fragmented and disrupted family of individuals who stare at each other via the lens of the TVs in their front room and wonder who they’re sitting beside tonight.

The family business suffers as a result: Smith and Sons (or Daughters) is no longer the destination career of Smith Junior who would much rather be something in coding, rather than join his dad or mum slaving away on a…

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