Matters Column

A weekly column on matters concerning legal, money, small business, family business and people issues.


Lifeboat ethics: Know where your politicians stand

October 24, 2014
Have you ever heard of Joshua Wong? Read More

Family-owned businesses need family meetings

October 17, 2014
Research tells us there are three key factors for the perpetuation of a family-owned business: having a strategic plan for the business, using a board that includes outside directors, and holding family meetings. Read More

Tempting the legal finger of fate: no winners here

October 10, 2014
Last week, after a long day in downtown Grand Rapids, I aimed my car toward U.S. 131 south, hoping to cover the 13-mile drive home in the usual 21 minutes, give or take 60 seconds. Read More

We cannot achieve if we do not believe success is possible

October 3, 2014
There are many reasons we fail to live up to our full potential, but the most common of them are often tied to inappropriate or unexpressed goals, inadequate or unstated expectations, and a lack of accountability. Read More

IRA owners' investment decisions may have tax risks

September 26, 2014
Washington is fond of studies and reports. Read More

Not preparing for the inevitable has predictable results

September 19, 2014
You should put on shingles before it starts raining: I heard that when I was a kid. Recently, I did not follow that simple adage. Read More

Exit strategies for a family business owner

September 12, 2014
The manager of a family business who is considering retirement often has four goals: paying as little in taxes as possible, keeping the business in the family, treating heirs fairly, and ensuring competent successor management. Read More

Drone technology generates significant legal buzz

September 5, 2014
As I stood outside of 2nd Recon Battalion Headquarters, located on the United States Marine Corps base at Camp Lejeune, I heard my name called from the inner region of the Senior Staff offices. Read More

Good leaders accomplish more with (rather than through) others

August 29, 2014
Great leaders develop practices and communicate expectations that allow them to manage fairly and consistently as they motivate people to contribute their proportionate share toward the success of the team or the stability of relationships. Read More

Acquisition transaction reporting is incomplete, inaccurate

August 22, 2014
Corporate tax deserters, tax traitor, economic patriotism: We have heard these terms many times in recent weeks. Read More