Danny Klinefelter, agricultural economist at Texas A&M University, identifies these six qualities of successful family-owned or closely-held businesses:

1. Shared vision, values and goals and a well-formed strategic plan.

2. Clear procedures and expectations regarding employment of family members in the business.

3. Participation by outside advisors, board members and managers.

4. Guidelines and a plan for management succession and business continuity.

5. Open communication and methods for resolving conflicts.

6. Ability to spend time and have fun outside of the business.