The Heartbeat of New York: Family Businesses in the Concrete Jungle

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Author: Kyler Gilbert | Consultant & Vice President | Business Consultant Resources

Taking over the reins of a family business is a journey packed with insights, revelations, and a newfound respect for the idea of family legacy. As I delve deeper into the operations of BCR Business Consulting Resources, Inc., I find myself more attuned to the stories of other family businesses. These businesses, each with its unique narrative, resonate with me as they lay the foundations of economies across the globe.

On a recent jaunt to New York City, this realization became more profound. The bustling metropolis, often regarded as a hub for mega-corporations and glitzy brands, surprisingly thrives on a rich tapestry of family-run enterprises. Each street, each corner seemed to echo tales of families who have turned their dreams into legacies.

Walking the streets of New York with my parents, Kenneth Gilbert and Jean Santos, was akin to a field trip. With every step, I felt as if we were ‘consultants in the wild.’ We keenly observed, ready to glean lessons and insights from family enterprises that thrived amidst the concrete jungle. And interestingly, our trip seemed to orbit around one central theme: food.

In the quaint locality of Orient, North Fork Long Island, we stumbled upon a culinary gem – a little haven called Opties and Dinghies. At its helm, Claudia and Vince, a husband and wife duo, served as the soul of the establishment. Their diverse backgrounds painted a colorful palette on the restaurant’s menu. Claudia, with her Asian roots, curated a mouth-watering selection. Her char sui bao, sticky rice wrapped in lotus leaf, and sesame noodles were an exquisite testament to her heritage. On the other hand, Vince showcased his flair with sweet and savory crepes that tantalized the taste buds. The culinary experience was aptly rounded off with a delightful range of ice creams, gelatos, and sorbets.

But the stories don’t end there. In the heart of Manhattan stands a testament to the enduring spirit of family businesses – Russ and Daughters. An establishment that began its journey 109 years ago is now being nurtured by its fourth generation. Their legacy of quality and authenticity makes us visit them every time we’re in the city. This trip led us to their latest outpost on West 34th and 10th Avenue. The fresh bagels complemented with caviar cream cheese were a delightful treat, evoking a warm feeling of something whipped up in your grandmother’s kitchen.

As I reflect upon our journey, it’s evident that family businesses are the heartbeat of economies, be it in small towns or sprawling cities. Their stories, drenched in passion, dedication, and love, are the threads that weave the social and economic fabric of our societies.

Our expedition may have been brief, but it reaffirmed my commitment to the family business legacy. So, as my journey with BCR Business Consulting Resources, Inc. continues, stay tuned for more ‘in the wild’ chronicles and adventures. The world of family businesses is vast, and we’ve just scratched the surface.

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