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Paco Valera
Lansberg Gersick & Associates
United States
Neus Feliu
Lansberg Gersick & Associates
United States
Ivan Lansberg
Lansberg Gersick & Associates
United States
Vol. 11 No. 1 (2021), Commentary
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We use the metaphor of biological DNA and its essential building blocks to describe generic and specific family business cultures and suggest that Spanish-speaking or "Latin" family businesses inherited four key cultural DNA building blocks—Trust, Loyalty, Authority and Justice—from historical Roman times. Like biological DNA, family businesses are forced to change when its environment changes. In this context, we discuss recent changes representing paradigm shifts to which family businesses relying on “Roman DNA” must adapt in order to be fit for the future. We draw upon our firm's 30 years of work consulting to Latin family businesses and present a wide range of supporting cases and stories.

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