The retirement chair: Why half-leaving doesn't work

It's common for a CEO to want to semi-retire and sit on the company's board but it's a move loaded with trouble, especially if the incoming CEO is a family member.

The upheaval at Leighton last week -- with the departure of its chief executive officer Hamish Tyrwhitt and chief financial officer Peter Gregg, who had their positions terminated after German construction and engineering giant Hochtief launched a $1.155 billion off-market offer to increase its ownership stake and board representation -- sends a signal to family businesses about the perennial battle for control on boards. One way or the other, Leighton will sort itself out. Sorting the board issues for family business is messier.

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