Briefcase: Closely Held Companies

Guest: Robert Ragazzo


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Prominent business owners of closely held corporations are entering politics. In these corporations, the majority of stock is often controlled by a single family. Robert Ragazzo, with University of Houston Law Center, researches these corporations and explains how corporate management styles are influencing government operations.

"Corporate leaders new to public service are eager to innovate," Ragazzo said. "However, their executive problem-solving techniques may be attributed to the corporate structure from whence they came. Former execs may opt for the top down, directive-driven style of management that worked well in their previous roles."

Professor Ragazzo says politicians who come from large publicly-traded corporations might be different. "Executives from companies where large groups of investors and boards of directors influenced corporate decisions may find themselves more inclined to build coalitions among legislative and non-legislative teams."