STEP - Advanced Certificate

STEP Advanced Certificate in Advising the Family Business

STEP Advanced Certificate in Advising the Family Business
Credits Awarding Body STEP
Credits Awarded 30
Credits Awarded Level Diploma-Level

This course provides practical knowledge about what differentiates family businesses from other types of clients; introduces theories and frameworks that are needed to better understand family business dynamics, and identify common concerns, transitions and difficulties encountered within a family business. 

Course purpose

The course explores what differentiates family businesses from other types of clients; provide students with a deeper understanding of the theories and frameworks that are needed to better understand family business dynamics, and examine common concerns, transitions and difficulties encountered within a family business.   

It is recommended that this programme is studied prior to enrolling for the STEP Advanced Certificate in Family Business Governance.

You will be able to

  • Understand the complexities of working with family businesses
  • Analyse family business dynamics, governance issues and sources of conflict
  • Apply a range of proven tools to help the family business achieve its objectives
  • Demonstrate the skills and knowledge expected of a competent family business adviser operating within the bounds of their own profession of origin

This will, in turn, enhance family business expertise and capabilities within your firm/department, provide you with access to a wider business and professional community of practice, help you to identify business opportunities in this emerging market and increase credibility with prospective clients.

Course audience

This course is designed for all professionals working with a family business looking to expand in their profession and carry out their role more effectively. 

Students of this course typically include:

  • Lawyers/Solicitors/Attorneys
  • Accountants
  • Financial Planners
  • Trust Managers (Senior)
  • Wealth Managers
  • Tax Advisors
  • Compliance Officers/Managers
  • Bankers
  • Family Office Executives


  • This course is widely applicable and essential to anyone working with a family business.
  • The programme is not jurisdiction or culturally specific – it has been designed to be accessible for all professions across the world, speaking in a common language so that those from different specialisms can collaborate to better serve their family business clients.
  • Designed, written and delivered with leading industry experts.
  • Successful completion provides 30 Diploma Level credits.

Format, Delivery and Assessment

This course is available for study twice annually, with intakes beginning in January and July (and assessments taking place in May and November). The programme is delivered online and will take four months to complete. We recommend that you spend four to six hours per week on private study for the four months prior to the assessment.

Enrolment onto this course will include the following:

  • access to an online learning platform that contains:
    • interactive e-learning modules comprising a combination of text, videos, podcasts, animations and interactive activities
    • printable versions of the modules and downloadable resources for delegates to keep following completion of the course
    • self-assessment questions and summative tasks for each module
  • assessment fees.

The Advanced Certificate in Advising Family Businesses is assessed by way of an end of course written assignment based on a published case study. The case study will be published two months ahead of the submission date. Candidates will produce a written assignment of between 3,500 and 4,000 words to address the questions contained within the case study. Candidates must achieve 50% in order to pass the Advanced Certificate. 

Once you have successfully completed this course, you will gain 30 Diploma-Level credits towards STEP membership and be awarded the STEP Advanced Certificate in Advising the Family Business.

Course Schedules

Course Timetable - 2020/2021

Please note all courses until end December 2020 are being delivered fully online.
Information surrounding our delivery model for 2021, and whether courses will continue in an online format, will be published by the end of October 2020.


There are no formal exemptions available for this course.

Fees and Booking

A discounted package fee is available for both Advanced Certificates when purchased together – £1,845.00 + UK VAT if applicable (discounted rate for full members of STEP £1,795.00 + UK VAT if applicable).

The fee is fully inclusive of all learning resources, distance learning support and assessment fees.

To purchase both courses, you will need to complete the Interactive Enrolment Form and return to CLTI.

Course Start Date Book Course
July 2021 895.00 845.00

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January 2021 895.00 845.00

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Awarded By



Online Only


4 Months

Entry Criteria

60 Entry-Level Credits

Note: Applicants must have obtained 60 STEP Entry-Level credits to enrol onto this course or be a member of STEP. Visit STEP's Qualifications and Membership Framework to understand how to apply.




Ken McCracken

Ken McCracken is a leading family business consultant and teacher, with extensive experience in succession planning and implementation for family businesses and family offices, effective governance for family enterprises, and educating multigenerational family businesses. 

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