Practicing fairness in the family business workplace

Georges Samara, Daniel Arenas

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


One of the main challenges facing family firms is achieving fairness between family and non-family employees in the workplace. Family and non-family employees have the potential to offer unique and distinct contributions to the firm, which makes the achievement of fairness between them messy and complicated. Hence, two interesting questions are worth exploring: Given the complex nature of the family business human capital, how can family firms achieve fairness between family and non-family employees? Why should family business decision makers and advisors promote fair practices in the family business workplace? We first introduce a fair process model as a possible solution for family businesses to achieve fairness between family and non-family employees. Then, based on several examples and studies, we show that family business owners can benefit significantly from promoting fairness in the workplace both in terms of preserving business reputation and in terms of achieving long-term family business survival and success.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)647-655
Number of pages9
JournalBusiness Horizons
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Business reputation
  • Ethical management
  • Family business dynamic
  • Family businesses
  • Human resources management
  • Social responsibility of business


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