More at Stake was created because we believe that much of the advice offered to enterprising families is based on assumptions that just don’t hold up:

– That owners of family businesses are only in it for the money.
– That management should be the primary decision-maker with regards to allocating capital.
– That public company governance is the best model for family business governance.

We bring a different, thought-provoking perspective on what it means to be part of a family business. And, we help you build the kind of engagement among owners, board, management, and family that can propel your enterprise—and all its forms of capital—to achieve your vision of success.

Watch this short video and find out what More At Stake means for family businesses.

We’re here to Support Family Business Owners.

As a business-owning family, you create many kinds of value for your family and your community. Measuring success solely by money grossly underestimates this value.

For too long, owners have been seen as meddlers who only interfere with those charged with running the business. We believe that in actuality, engaged owners—acting in partnership with family, board, and management—are a critical asset. Your Shared Purpose and Vision can propel the business, the Core Capital, and the family to achieve success on your terms.

We understand that owners are essential participants in business and capital decision-making. And, we understand this because we have managed our own family businesses and have advised family businesses for decades.

We’re here for Family Advisors, too.

We know that no matter what your field—legal, investments, wealth planning, or family office management—understanding the unique context and challenges of your family business clients helps you to give the best advice possible. It also sets you apart from the competition.

We want to set a benchmark for family businesses, to offer advice that goes beyond so-called “best practice,” to deliver what each family truly needs. We give you the information you need in order to make a difference, as well as the tools and training to take your team to the next level, and add further value to your clients.

Our award-winning advice helps build mutually beneficial relationships with your family business clients.

more at stake is Your Home for Family Business Insight.

More at Stake has brought together the finest minds in family business thinking—experts in the fields of family business governance design, succession and estate planning, M&As, conflict resolution, and psychology—to give you a rounded view of the challenges and considerations families face.

A More at Stake membership provides you with thought leadership, practical tools and advice, and discounts on related family business services, such as Engagement Toolkit training and Renkert Thomas consulting services. You will also benefit from access to our growing community of family business experts and owners.

As an ex-president of my own family business, a lawyer to multi-generational businesses and family offices, and a family business consultant, I know first-hand that for family businesses there is more at stake than money. We developed More at Stake to share nearly three decades of family business experience with you.

Amelia Renkert-Thomas

Founder and Consultant, More at Stake

Engaging vs. Disengaging

Business-owning families benefit from working under a Shared Purpose and Vision, improving decision-making practices, and understanding all the forms of capital that they have invested in their business. This is the essence of Engaging. But not every family is able to engage. For some families, there may be conflict that cannot be resolved within the current ownership structure and dynamic. To delve into these situations, Amelia developed the Disengaging process.


To help illustrate the Engaging concept, More at Stake offers our Engaging series, which tells the story of the Owen family—third-generation family business owners striving to engage. Follow their story to glean relevant insight, considerations, and actionable steps for your own enterprise.


To demonstrate the concept of Disengaging, More at Stake offers our Disengaging series, which tells the story of the Cannon family—second- and third-generation family business owners who find themselves in conflict over ownership structure and their vision for the future. You can follow their story to learn alternative solutions for your family and business.

Family Business Owners

You bring a unique perspective to the family enterprise; you’re best-placed to see the bigger picture of your business—beyond financials alone. You are positioned to fully understand your Core Capital—all of the Human, Enterprise, and Financial Capital your family invested in your business. We give you the information, tools, and resources you need to help guide you in making the best decisions for your business and your family, as a whole. We help you to communicate effectively, reduce conflict, and create new energy around business and capital discussions. We educate you to ensure your governance structure meets your specific needs.

Family Business Advisors

As family enterprise owners become more engaged and informed, we ensure you have the latest information to put you ahead of the curve and go beyond so-called “best practice,” to cater to the specific needs of your clients. We help you to work effectively and understand why there is more at stake than money for family business owners. We provide you with practical advice and examples, to give you a holistic perspective. We are here to assist you both in building your client relationships and in growing your family business practice, supporting you in your role as a trusted advisor.

Download your Free Guides

Forums give each group within your family enterprise a voice, and allow decisions to be made, while taking into account the perspectives of owners, board members, and family members.

This handy infographic and checklist will help you build and manage your forums effectively.

The quality of your decision-making depends on the quality of your meetings.

Our Free Guide outlines the key steps to effective family meetings, and helps ensure you are getting the most from your meetings and are making the best decisions for your family and your business.

Latest Articles

Part II – A New Approach to Family Business Governance

Ken McCracken, Head of Family Business Consulting KPMG, UK, and More at Stake Contributor, introduces the topic of Intention in family business ownership. Owners' Intention illustrates how the owners approach decisions about their enterprise, and can be reflected in the governance structure, board composition, and management practices of the business. From controlling owners, to sibling partnerships and cousin consortiums, understanding Intention, as owners, can help guide the key decisions made within the enterprise. read more

Disengaging 8 | Rained On

  Grace Portman Lear Wednesday afternoon Matthew and I had our quarterly meeting of the Cannon Springs divisions this afternoon. My mom, Joyce, who is the President of the company, made me head of the Clear Lake vineyard in 2002 after my grandfather, Pete Sr.,...

read more

From Meddling to Leadership

Question: Which of the following is the measure of success for a multi-generational family business? Top-line (sales) growth through geographic expansion Going public Exit through sale to an industry giant Diversifying into new products or services Expanding through...

read more

Teaching Kids Money Skills Pt. 1

How do I talk to my kids about our money? How can I help them become financially capable and responsible? In this practical article, we outline some simple exercises the whole family can buy into to improve money habits and financial awareness. read more