Areas of Expertise
- Family Governance
- Ownership Group Alignment
- Management Succession
- Strategic Planning Design, Facilitation and Implementation
- Able to Speak Softly and Carry a Big Stick
The most rewarding part of my work is when we can match the unique talents and energy of the next generation with a family enterprise need, igniting family cohesiveness, engagement and fun.
- Own It! How to Develop a Family Enterprise Owner’s Mindset at Every Age
- Developing a Family Enterprise Owner’s Mindset
- Walk the Talk: Building Next-Gen Communication Skills
- Aligning the Family Enterprise: Should We Meet In-Person or Virtually?
- The Dark Side of Being Too Generous to Family Employees
- Welcoming the Next Generation into the Family Enterprise
- Family Owner Development — The Foundation for Continuity
- Rekindling the Magic in Your Family Meetings
- Getting Started with Family Governance
- Getting Started with Family Governance: Fundamentals of Family Councils, Charters and Policies
Barbara Dartt is a principal consultant for FBCG. She has more than 20 years’ experience helping individuals and family groups grapple with the joys and challenges that are a natural part of families owning and managing businesses together.
At FBCG, Barb helps families get aligned, anticipate and prevent future challenges, and communicate effectively to grow their businesses. She does this work for the thrill of seeing the talents of individual family members get recognized and harnessed to contribute to the health of their families and businesses.
Growing up, Barb watched her grandfather and father provide educational extension services to family-owned farms. Her interest in serving farm families led her to study veterinary medicine, receiving her doctoral degree from Michigan State University in 1996.
In 1998, Barb earned a master’s degree in Agricultural Economics at MSU where she worked as a graduate research assistant, then as a Farm Business Management Specialist. She continued her family legacy as a third-generation Extension agent working closely with family farms to improve their business practices, develop management skills and identify growth opportunities.
Drawing on her strengths as a financial and strategic advisor, Barb began supporting the unique needs of family business entrepreneurs as a senior business consultant for Salisbury Management Services (later named Lookout Ridge Consulting) in 2001. She later became a founding partner of GROW, a family business advisory firm serving a wide range of sectors, from agriculture and manufacturing to professional services. She has also served as director and Board Chair of the Michigan FFA Foundation.
In 2014, Barb brought her extensive advising experience to FBCG to benefit family enterprises across industries. According to a client, “Without Barb’s help, we wouldn’t have made the progress much needed on our decision making and family relationships.”
- FFI Fellow, October 10, 2014
- Advanced Certificate in Family Business Advising, October 8, 2014
- Certificate in Family Business Advising, October 30, 2008
- Master of Science, Agricultural Economics, Michigan State University, Aug 1998
- Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, with honor, Michigan State University, May 1996
- Bachelor of Science, Animal Science, cum laude, Michigan State University, May 1993
Barb lives in the East Lansing, Michigan area with her husband and three children where she enjoys cooking, reading and cheering on her favorite high school and college basketball teams.