Ernesto Poza

Ernesto Poza is a clinical professor of entrepreneurship at the Thunderbird School of Global Management. He is an internationally recognized leader in family business, education, research and consulting, and is the director of Thunderbird’s renowned Global Family Enterprise, a unique program within the Walker Center for Global Entrepreneurship at Thunderbird.

Ernesto Poza

Professor of Global Family Enterprise
Thunderbird School of Global Management
1 Global Place
Glendale, Arizona 85306 USA

President, E. J. Poza Associates, Inc.
Family Business Consultant
28707 North 107th Street
Scottsdale, Arizona 85262 USA 


  • M.S. in Management from the Alfred P. Sloan School of Management, MIT, 1974.
  • B.S. Organization and Management, Yale University, 1972.
  • Postgraduate course work in the Organizational Behavior doctoral program at Case-Western Reserve University (1975-76) and the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland (1978-79).

Academic and Teaching Experience

2006- Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship, Walker Center for Global Entrepreneurship, Thunderbird School of Global Management
1996-2006 Professor for the Practice of Management and Director of The Partnership for Family Business, Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.
1994-1995 Adjunct Professor, Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.
1992-1993 Senior Lecturer, Weatherhead School of Management, Cleveland, Ohio.
Taught, in collaboration with Prof. Theodore Alfred, MBA, class entitled: “Managing
the Family Firm.”
1976-1990 Guest lecturer at several Organizational Behavior classes at Case Western Reserve University conducted by Professors Ron Fry, William Pasmore and Barbara Bird. Also guest lectured at Yale University, MIT’s Sloan School, Universidad de Chile, Universidad Menendez y Pelayo, Spain.
1973-1974 Teaching Assistant, Management of Change Seminar taught by Richard Beckhard at
MIT-Sloan School.

Referenced Publications by Ernesto Poza

  • Poza, Ernesto J., "Family Governance: How Leading Families Manage the Challenges of Wealth," Credit Suisse/Thunderbird, Zurich, 2012.
  • Poza, Ernesto J., "Gupta Garments & Amit's First 100 Days," Case and Teaching Notes, Thunderbird School of Global Management Case Series, 2011.
  • Poza, Ernesto J.; Hanlon, Susan; Kishida, Reiko, “Does the Family-Business Interaction Factor Represent a Resource or a Cost?”, Family Business Review, 17(2), June 2004.
  • Poza, Ernesto J.; Messer, Tracey, “Fasteners for Retail: A Question of Succession (Parts A & B)”,
  • International Journal of Management Cases, Special Issue, University of Gloucestershire, Jan/Feb 2004.
  • Poza, Ernesto J.; Messer, Tracey, “Spousal Leadership and Continuity in the Family Firm”, Family Business Review, Vol. 14 No. 1, March 2001.
  • Poza, Ernesto; “Entre Socios: Diez Principios para una Sociedad Familiar Efectiva”, Empresa Familiar Deusto/IESE, edited by Professor Miguel Gallo, Universidad de Navarra, Barcelona, Spain, September-October 2000.
  • Poza, Ernesto J.; Alfred, Theodore, A.; Johnson, Sandra, “Changing the Family Business through Action Research”, Family Business Review, Vol. 11 No. 4, December, 1998.
  • Poza, Ernesto, “La Competencia Global y la Empresa Familiar Latinoamericana”, Revista Incae, 10(2), 1998.
  • Poza, E. J., Alfred, T., & Maheshwari, A., “Stakeholder perceptions of culture and management practices in family and family firms – a preliminary report”. Family Business Review, 10(2), 1997.
  • Poza, Ernesto J., "Managerial Practices that Support Interpreneurship and Continued Growth", Family Business Review, Jossey-Bass, 1988.
  • Poza, Ernesto J., "Twelve Actions to Build Strong U.S. Factories", Sloan Management Review, 1983.
  • Poza, Ernesto J. and Markus, M. Lynne, "Success Story: The Team Approach to Work Restructuring", Organizational Dynamics, 1980.

Books by Ernesto Poza

  • Poza, Ernesto, Daugherty, Mary, Family Business, 4th edition, South-Western/Cengage, 2013, Mason, Ohio.
  • Poza, Ernesto, Invited chapter in Advances in Entrepreneurship, Firm Emergence and Growth, Volume 12. Entrepreneurship and Family Business, Jerome Katz, G.T. Lumpkin and Alex Stewart, editors, Chapter 17: “Late Stage Entrepreneurial Activity: What Students Should Know about Family-Owned and Family-Controlled Companies”. Emerald Group Publishing, September 2010, Bingley, United Kingdom.
  • Poza, Ernesto, Chapter in International Entrepreneurship, Robert Hisrich, editor. Chapter 12: The Continuing Spirit of Enterprise: Lessons from Centennial Family Companies, Sage Publishing, May 2010, Thousand Oaks, California.
  • Poza, Ernesto, Family Business, 3rd edition, South-Western/Cengage, April, 2010, Mason, Ohio.
  • Poza, Ernesto, Family Business, 2nd edition, Thomson Financial, 2006, Mason, Ohio
  • Poza, Ernesto, Empresas Familiares, International Thomson Editores, 2005, México, D.F.
  • Poza, Ernesto, Family Business, Thomson/Southwest Publishing, 2004, Mason, Ohio.
  • Poza, Ernesto, Smart Growth: Critical Choices for Business Continuity, 1989, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco,. Second Edition, University Publishers, 1997, Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Poza, E., Danco, L., Nager, R., La Empresa Familiar por Dentro, Editorial Universitaria para la Empresa Familiar, 1998, Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Poza, Ernesto, A la Sombra del Roble (In the Shadow of the Oak: Continuity in the Family-Owned Business) published in Spanish by Editorial Universitaria para la Empresa Familiar, 1995, Cleveland, OH.
  • Chapter in Book - Poza, Ernesto; “Organization Development in Family Businesses”, Chapter 15 in Handbook of Organization Development, Sage Publishers, Thousand Oaks, CA, 2006.
  • Chapter in Book – Poza, Ernesto, “El Lider Frente a la Sucesion en la Empresa Familiar”, Chapter 1 in La Sucesión en la Empresa Familiar, Deusto/Instituto Empresa Familiar, Barcelona, Spain, 2005.
  • Chapter in Book - Poza, Ernesto; Alfred, Theodore; Maheshwari, Anil; “Percepciones de los ‘stakeholders’ de la cultura y las prácticas de dirección en la familia y las empresas familiares: Un Reporte Preliminar”, Chapter 3 in La Empresa Familiar 6, IESE, Universidad de Navarra, Barcelona, Spain, October 1999.

Other Publications by Ernesto Poza

  • Poza, Ernesto J., "Mantener Vivo el Espiritu Emprendedor," Actualidad de la Empresa Familiar Fundación, Heres, Mexico, 2011.
  • Poza, Ernesto J. and Alfred, Theodore, “What the Silent Majority Thinks (but may not tell you)”, Family Business, Autumn 1996, p.16-21.
  • Poza, Ernesto J. and Fuchs, Claudio, “Improving Morale and Customer Service in Banks: A Case History”, Personnel, Periodicals Division of American Management Association, 1987.
  • Poza, Ernesto J., “Comprehensive Change-Making”, Training & Development Journal, 1985.
  • Poza, Ernesto J., “A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Group Problem-Solving”, Personnel, Periodicals Division of American Management Association, 1983.

Professional Service and Awards for Ernesto Poza

  • International Award, Family Firm Institute, 2010.
  • Awarded the prestigious Richard Beckhard Award of the Family Firm Institute for 1996 in recognition of significant contributions to the practice of family business management.
  • Editorial Review Board of the Family Business Review.
  • Editorial Review Board, Journal of Family Business Strategy.
  • Contributing Editor, Family Business Magazine.
  • Senior Fellow, The Family Firm Institute, Boston, Mass., October 2001.
  • Research Chair: International Family Business Program Association, Annual Conference and Proceedings, San Antonio, Texas, July 1998.
  • Cladea (Council of Latin American Business Schools), Conference Keynote,1999, San Juan, Puerto Rico.
  • Assisted Partnership for Family Business companies in their formation of Boards of Directors and Advisory Boards with independent outsiders. Also in the creation of Family Councils for better leadership of shareholder issues and greater overall governance effectiveness in the family-owned business.
  • Assisted in the creation of “cátedras de empresa familiar” or family business programs throughout Spain by conducting introductory seminars, family business case clinics, and holding meetings with family business faculty from Instituto de Empresa, IESE, Universidad Carlos I, Instituto San Telmo, Universidad de Toledo and others.
  • Assisted in the creation of family business programs and family business centers at Universidad de Monterrey and Instituto Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico. Keynote speaker every other year, for the last twelve, in the annual Family Business Network Conference in Monterrey.
  • Family Firm Institute, Founding Member and Board Member (1990-93). Reviewer, Discussant and Presenter of Papers in Annual Conferences, 1985-2010.
  • US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, worked with start-up of Cleveland chapter in the early ‘90s and led business seminar on Family Business for Annual Meeting, October 1995.

Business and Consulting Experience of Ernesto Poza

Ernesto Poza has advised top managements of privately-held and Fortune 500 companies in strategic management, succession planning, growth and governance. Among the firms served in the United States, Latin America and Spain are: Allied-Signal, Armstrong, Atlantic Richfield, Avery-Dennison, Banco de Chile, Bethlehem Steel, Chiquita Brands, Corn Products, Donnely Mirror, E. W. Scripps Company, General Motors, Gonzalez Byass, S.A. and Catalana Occidente (Spain), Grupo Alfa and Grupo Financiero Bancomer (Mexico), El Nuevo Dia (Puerto Rico), Grupo Salcedo (Ecuador), Huber & Co., James River Paper, Mars, Inc., Sherwin-Williams, Simpson Investments and Sky Bank (United States) and Rica Dairy, Induveca Barcelo & Co. and Mercantil del Caribe (Dominican Republic). Poza started his career in business with Sherwin-Williams where he was the director of organization planning and development until 1979, when he started E. J. Poza Associates.

He also directed the Foundation for Continuing Education of the Steel Service Center Institute (1988-89) and has been a family business commentator on business programs aired by ABC, CBS, CNN, CPN, NBC and NPR’s Marketwatch and on articles published by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune Small Business, Business Week, El País, Expansión and ABC (Spain), El Mercurio (Chile), Excelsior (Mexico), Family Business Magazine, Inc., Industry Week and Nation’s Business. He lives in Scottsdale, Ariz. with his wife.