Here you'll find tips on the application process and how to effectively tell your family's story. Please note that all information submitted to the Loyola Family Business Center remains confidential.
Watch the video below for best practices when submitting an application.
How to write a winning application
- Tell Your Story: The survival of your family business has no doubt experienced ups and downs. Tell us about how the business got started and how your family has come together to help it survive and thrive.
- Highlight the Involvement of Multiple Generations: Each generation has added and continues to add value to a company. Tell us about how each generation has contributed and how they continue to be involved.
- Back it Up with Numbers: Share with us important figures that back up your prose. It will help us to understand where you have been, where you are, and where you'll be going.
- Make Sure it is Well Written: No story is a good story if it is poorly told. Make sure that you proofread your application before you submit it, and check for spelling and grammar errors.
- Make Sure you Answer the Question: If you need clarification, email or call us at 312.915.6490.
- Stick to the Specified Word Limit: We know how excited you are to tell your story; keep those answers concise and meaningful.
- Discuss Your Future Aspirations: Identify any opportunities or plans for short- and long-term growth; what processes you are implementing to move forward?
Helpful tips for specific application questions
Below are some tips to help you answer specific application questions. Remember to provide succinct answers and stick to the 500 word limit. All sensitive information will be kept confidential by those involved with the judging process.
Application Question 1 · Key Components to Address:
- Give a clear description of your business
- Describe the history and evolution of your business
- What industry/industries does your company serve?
- What are your primary products/services?
- How does your company positions itself within the marketplace?
- What's your market size?
- Describe the scope of the business (domestic, international, both)
- What's the family's involvement?
- Share with us any rankings (if applicable)
- Describe the growth in employees over the past year/years
Application Question 5 · Key Components to Address:
- Briefly discuss any succession plans you have in place
- What is the decision-making process for choosing a successor?
- Describe the succession plan of the company owner; how does he/she plan to pass the business to the next generation?
- Discuss any preparation or assistance provided to successors
- Identify any outside resources you have used to aid with the succession process
- Do you have an advisory board or any other key advisors aiding in the succession process?
- Who are you engaging in the transfer of wealth; what role do they play?
- Provide a 3-5 year growth plan; if applicable, explain how this plan relates to succession of the business
Application Question 9 · Key Components to Address:
- Provide a performance picture of the following financial information: sales; revenue; margins; profitability; earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization; stockholders' equity; liabilities and debt; capital intensity of the business; and a comparison to other competitors in the industry/marketplace
- Discuss what drives numbers up or down (input prices, raw materials) and how you manage these resources
- Identify where past growth has come from
- Identify future growth opportunities and obstacles; how they're being managed?
- It is helpful to relate previous financial statements to previous years and address any gains or losses in terms of percentages.
- Provide a year-end summary for revenue and net profit/loss if any explanation is needed
- PLEASE NOTE: If your company submitted an application within the last three years, it is important that you provide updated financial information to our judges. This ensures an adequate assessment of your application.