The pair release new book about ‘Entrepreneurs in Every Generation’

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Babson College Professor Allan Cohen and former visiting scholar Pramodita S​harma have co-authored Entrepreneurs in Every Generation—a new book that draws on personal roots in family business and extensive global research to reveal the secrets of enterprising families.

Families are complicated; family businesses even more so. Like other companies, family-run enterprises must develop leadership and entrepreneurial skills, but they must also manage unique family dynamics.

Cohen and Sharma use examples of firms that have both flourished and failed to describe the practices that characterize entrepreneurial individuals, families, and organizations. Together, they offer detailed advice on how to develop and implement such practices. Each chapter ends with a work sheet that helps readers to create an action plan for building entrepreneurs in every generation.

Worldwide, most businesses are family businesses. This book offers practical advice to help ensure that they thrive into the next century. It can be purchased through Berrett-Koehler Publishers, or on AmazonBarnes & Noble, and Indiebound.

About the Authors

Babson College Professor Allan R. Cohen holds the Edward A. Madden Distinguished Professorship in Global Leadership and is in residence at the San Francisco campus. He completed seven years as Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty, and served two years as interim Dean of the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business. He was awarded the college’s highest honor, The Walter Carpenter Prize for distinguished service in 2008. 

A consultant on organizational change and leadership for companies as large as GE, IBM, and Lafarge, and as entrepreneurial as Access Technology and Menon and Menon Diesel Engines, he helped found the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad. He has also lived and worked in the Philippines, England, and Holland and has consulted in China, Brazil, Venezuela, Ireland, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Singapore, and Dubai. At the University of New Hampshire, he was the J. R. Carter Professor of Management and helped build the Whittemore School.

Cohen’s first book, based on his doctoral dissertation, was Tradition, Change, and Conflict in Indian Family Business. He is the co-author with David Bradford of numerous books widely used by managers: the best seller Managing for Excellence; the award-winning Alternative Work ArrangementsPower UpTransforming Organizations through Shared LeadershipInfluence without Authority; and Influencing Up. He edited The Portable MBA in Management. His co-authored best-selling text book with Fink, Gadon, and Willits, Effective Behavior in Organizations, through its seven editions helped transform the teaching of organizational behavior. 

Areas of expertise include leadership and influence, changes in organizations, educational methods, management and organizational behavior, cross-functional teams, family business, management development for international work, negotiations, corporate entrepreneurship, and strategic change. He has served on the boards of several nonprofits, including First Place for Youth, Vinfen, Families for Depression Awareness, and the Cambridge School of Weston.

Pramodita (Dita) Sharma is the Daniel Clark Sanders Chair and professor of Family Business at the Grossman School of Business, University of Vermont. She is a visiting professor at the Kellogg School of Management’s Center for Family Enterprises, Northwestern University. She has also been a visiting scholar at Babson College where she served as the academic director of the Successful Transgenerational Entrepreneurship Practices (STEP) project for five years. Dita holds honorary doctorates from the Jönköping University in Sweden and the University of Witten/ Herdecke in Germany. 

Sharma’s research on succession processes, governance, innovation, next-generation commitment, and entrepreneurial leadership in family enterprises has been honored with several international awards. She is amongst the most frequently cited scholars in family business. In addition to nine co-authored books, she has published over fifty scholarly articles and book chapters on family business studies. Her book on entrepreneurial family firms (with Hoy) is being used in family business courses around the world and has been translated into Mandarin. And the SAGE Handbook of Family Business (with Melin and Nordqvist) is described as a “must read” and “critical resource for all students and scholars of family business.” 

Sharma serves as the editor of Family Business Review, a highly ranked journal of business. With Mark Green, she co-founded Family Enterprise Research Conference in 2005. In 2013 she launched the Global Family Enterprise Case Competition. Pramodita received the prestigious Barbara Hollander award at the 25th anniversary conference of the Family Firm Institute, and received the Life Time Influence and Impact award at the 2015 Family Enterprise Research Conference. 

About Babson College

Babson College is the educator, convener, and thought leader for Entrepreneurship of All Kinds®​. The to​p​-rankedcollege for entrepreneurship education, Babson is a dynamic living and learning laboratory where students, faculty, and staff work together to address the real-world problems of business and society. We prepare the entrepreneurial leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge and the skills and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, and motivate teams in a common purpose to make a difference in the world, and have an impact on organizations of all sizes and types. As we have for nearly a half-century, Babson continues to advance Entrepreneurial Thought & Action®​​ ​as the most positive force on the planet for generating sustainable economic and social value.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

By Brianna DiPietro,, (781) 239-4548 | 06/06/2016 02:00