Family businesses face the same issues all small businesses face, but situations are often amplified by the emotions involved in family relationships. Family members often have different values as they relate to the business, reward and motivation, transition planning and the impact of business decisions on family life and vice versa. Pete Edmunds learned valuable lessons during his experience in the family business that he could apply with his own company. Pete first contacted the SBDC in 1994 expressing an interest in leaving the family cable installation company and starting his own business. He discussed startup issues and requirements with Business Adviser Al Randzin at that time, but waited until a few years later to develop a business plan and seek financing. In 1997, Pete took an executive position in the cable industry and continued to work on his business plan in his spare time. In 1999, Pete returned to the SBDC to implement the plan and secure financing. He purchased 11 new and used trucks and launched the company under the name Pete's Communication and Technology Corporation.
Pete re-contacted the SBDC in 2002 to discuss an offer from Time Warner - and the opportunity to double or triple his business. The business had tripled in size since 1999, and seemed on the verge of another significant growth stage. Al Randzin helped Pete update his plan, develop new financials, and evaluate potential investors. Today Pete's sons manage the day-to-day operations of the business, which is now named Mid-Hudson Communications Company, and Pete is working on a succession plan that will permit him to spend more time under the warm Florida sun.