John Messervey

President and Private Family Advisor, National Family Business Council, Inc., Lake Forest, Illinois USA

J. B. Pritzker, John Messervey and bestselling author and thought leader Philip K. Howard share ideas at a recent FEW CONFERENCE

35+ Years of Invaluable Experience

John Messervey is an organization behavior consultant who counsels high wealth families throughout the United States and overseas.  Among the earliest family business/wealth consultants, Mr. Messervey serves as President and Private Family Advisor of the National Family Business Council, a private consulting group and resource center in Lake Forest, Illinois. Over the years, John has resolved numerous complex issues including corporate growth and strategy, generational transfer of wealth, dispute resolution and mediation, next generation coaching and mentoring, family office governance, succession and related issues of earned/inherited wealth. John has consulted almost 400 families throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia since 1980. He often guides families, owners and managers through very difficult conversations and is known for his consultations with very complex family challenges.

One of the Most Experienced Advisors in the Field

John served as a founding board member of the Family Firm Institute (FFI) and also launched the first Family Business Study Group at the Menninger Management Institute. He is one of the most experienced advisors in the field of family business and family wealth. Mr. Messervey has presented cases and topical discussions to a variety of groups including the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), World President’s Organization (WPO), the Menninger Management Institute, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan/Chase, Merrill Lynch, Northern Trust, Baird, William Blair and the Tokyo LTCB Research & Management Institute.

Founders of the first FAMILY BUSINESS STUDY GROUP, Glenn Swogger, M. D. and John Messervey at the Menninger Management Institute.

John has a certain methodology when working with family businesses. He is able to help a healthy and stable family business succeed to the next phase effortlessly. John has a diverse client base which allows him to show a client how to look outside of their own world to see other options. His uniqueness is his honesty and genuine care for his clients. If clients are not taking the process seriously, he will not keep them as clients.

– Sarah, consultation client

Leading families trust John Messervey

A Sought-After Speaker and Writer

John is a featured family business advisor having appeared on ABC, CBS, CNBC, CBS radio and NPR. He is frequently quoted in national publications including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Forbes, and Fortune. Mr. Messervey has a Master’s degree in Organization Behavior from the J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University; he is an Economics graduate of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. John has served as an advisor to four philanthropic boards in the fields of education, public policy, the arts and the environment. He is also an active all season outdoorsman enjoying any number of recreation and sporting adventures worldwide.

Consultations, Mediation, Coaching and Mentoring

The National Family Business Council is a private research and consulting group quietly serving family businesses and high wealth families. NFBC applies a breadth of resources to resolve family issues that directly affect the creation and continuity of wealth among America’s leading families. The Council also develops strategies for successful management, succession and growth of closely held businesses. NFBC has assembled a client resource list that is broad and deep; some of the finest and most experienced resources in the field are readily available to NFBC consulting clients. NFBC clients are among America’s leading families; including winners of the Horatio Alger Award, America’s Best Places to Work, multiple members of the Forbes 400, the Wall Street Journal’s Best Small Business Award and the Inc. Magazine’s 500 Fastest Growing Businesses in the U. S. The Council provides on-going family consultations, mediation, coaching and mentoring of the succeeding generations, facilitation of family educational gatherings and guidance for the sale of family owned businesses. NFBC is at the forefront in facilitating Harvard’s internationally recognized Leading Change vision/mission/values program for families in business.

Each year, NFBC sponsors the widely acclaimed, invitation only FEW (family/enterprise/wealth) Conference in Chicago.

John and Bloomberg director Frank Savage discuss emerging international opportunities.

John and Richard Branson discuss his philanthropic efforts in THE GIVING PROJECT

John and James Beard Award winner, Ella Brennan celebrate food, wine and their family business at Commander’s Palace in New Orleans.

John and one of his favorite entrepreneurs, Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia.


Talk to John…

Internationally known family wealth consultant John Messervey has helped over 400 high net worth families over the past 30+ years. How can John help you?

Start the conversation

Talk to John…

Internationally known family wealth consultant John Messervey has helped over 400 high net worth families over the past 30+ years. How can John help you?

Start the conversation

Our family began working with John after our father (founder) passed away. Over the years of our relationship, we have made significant achievements in communicating, interpersonal skills and in dealing with confrontational situations. John, in a very professional and subtle way, allows yourself to be freed from the obstacles in your path and deal with issues straight on. John is extremely intuitive. He never pushes his beliefs upon you. He allows you to deal with situations when you are ready and prepared to deal with them. John has taken a genuine interest in our progress and is always available whenever he might be needed.

– Laurence, Consultation Client

John was able to help us get on the same page. A transition strategy was formulated, and additional outside management was hired and assimilated. All of these things have brought our company and our family much closer together. There is more of a team spirit and more of a sense of ownership at all levels of our family. John took time to get to know everyone in our family. After nine months of monthly sessions, a family retreat was scheduled; it was a huge success!

– James, Consultation Client