Family Business Alliance Ambassadors are volunteers for FBA who are committed to helping members get the most out of their membership. They are all individuals who have been very involved with the organization and have used resources and programs to help strengthen their businesses and families. Ambassadors are available as a resource to our members for any questions they may have from a member’s perspective.
Alex Richert is one of FBA’s committed ambassadors serving the family business community on his own time. Get to know Alex with his answers to our questionnaire below.
How did you first get involved in FBA?
My first involvement with FBA was when my mom asked if I would learn more about joining a peer group in early 2020. I attended the virtual Peer Group training (just a few months after COVID first hit) and was blown away by how quickly I got to know several other Next-Gen business leaders who also work in their family business. My involvement grew from there as I learned more about the opportunities available within the FBA for learning, development, and networking.
Why is FBA important to you?
Our family business (like many others) has unique strengths and challenges operating a business together with family and non-family member leadership. I saw FBA as an organization that would allows us to connect and learn from other Family Businesses who have experienced all of those same challenges. I believe in the first year of our FBA involvement our family business was able to experience internal growth and development that would have taken 3-5 years without the insight we gained from being so connected to other family owned and operated businesses.
What has been your favorite FBA event?
The annual FBA event at the Amway Grand in 2021 was a great experience and my first in-person opportunity to meet other FBA members outside of my Peer Group.
Why do you think family businesses are important to West Michigan?
There are all the obvious reasons such as how family businesses makeup over half of the total employment in the state, they regularly take better care of their employees, and they are huge contributors to our thriving economy in West Michigan. One of the less known or thought of reasons Family Businesses are good for West Michigan is when the business gets handed down or transitioned to the next generation. During this transition I have seen successful family businesses transition not only their operations to the next generation but also their hard working, innovative, and charitable values as well. I’ve seen these strong, positive values adopted by not only the Next-Gen family leaders but also in the employees as well.
What is your favorite (non-work related!) hobby?
The yearly hunting trip to Montana and my wife and I love to take our family on a vacation each quarter
Tell us some fun facts about yourself
Favorite ice cream flavor: Eskimo Kisses from our local House of Flavors in Ludington, MI
Favorite Grand Rapids restaurant: The HopCat!
Favorite TV show/movie: Band of Brothers
Favorite book: The Millionaire Nextdoor by Thomas Stanley