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Some of the largest most successful businesses in this country are family owned.  How they operate is completely different to other corporate structures, and if you want to do business with them, it’s important to understand this.
It’s for this reason that I’ve been working with Peter as a member of the Family Business Practice for over 2 years.  Each week I’ve listened to members tell us their stories as to how they Fill The Fridge, Sleep At Night and work with people they Know, Like & Trust.  I have found them to be both fascinating and inspirational and always relevant to how I do business each and every day.
This book brings together some of the best of those stories and I hope you find them as useful as I have.  Of course reading the stories and listening to the stories are two completely different things so I’d recommend you get along to a Family Business Practice meeting and hear them for yourselves.
I hope you enjoy the book and hope to see you at a Family Business Practice meeting soon.
Neil Lloyd
Director FBC Manby Bowdler

Introduction to the book by Peter Roper The Family Business Man

Peter_RoperI have been lucky enough to have published four books in my career with one achieving best-seller status with my co-author Andy Lopata back in 2006!
One of the many things I have learned in the process of writing a book is that it takes far longer than you can ever imagine. I mean seriously how hard can it be???
The answer is that the process has so many mini processes within it most of them are obvious but only when you are actually doing them!
And with this book, we have the added challenge of lots of co-authors most of whom have never written a book before!
But isn't that the case with a family business as well? Lots of processes which have lots of mini processes all affecting the business, the employees, the clients, suppliers and of course family members - in fact, the word LOTS could easily just sum up a family business!
For most of us running a family business means being approached with new situations every day. Generally, there is no one there to help us face these situations and we learn through experience sometimes good and sometimes not so good!
When I had the idea of creating the Family Business Practice some years ago it was to help individuals and businesses learn from each other so we could make more informed and better decisions.
I'm pleased to say that our members agree and we have all benefitted from our combined expertise!
So when I felt it was time to write a book on family business it was logical to apply the same principle and ask a bunch of friends to co-author the book thus providing a far greater degree of experience and expertise! 
Whilst the phrase "herding cats" comes to mind it has been a pleasure and a privilege to help my co-authors in this process and I am sure you will benefit from the wisdom and expertise they provide, much of which is priceless...
Interestingly when it came to deciding the title of the book there was much conjecture as to what we should call it.

Many ideas were looked at and then one day I was having a chat with someone who was relaying a story of how a particular family business in question had gone way over what was expected of them with a client. Many of his friends had been staggered at what the business had done on behalf of its client which included many long hours and a very high degree of commitment.
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He asked me for my view on the subject and I simply said “It’s a Family Business… and it’s what we do!”
And there, in a nutshell, came the title for this book. There are many surveys year on year that shows the dedication and commitment provided by family business to their clients, suppliers, environment and the wider audience. The way we work, the way we serve, is so very different and the contributions to this book are a typical example.
So the title “It’s a Family Business!” couldn’t be more appropriate.
This book is designed as an easy read which can be picked up and put down again at any time.
Take one idea at a time, and take action that week, then look at another the following week and within twelve months your business will be measurably better.
Enjoy it and do let us know how you get on!
Go on you know you want to!