From Poverty to Prosperity Chapter 2

Business Empire Succession Planning

The Goldings had no children of their own and Martha was not impressed with the caliber of relatives who’d normally inherit extended family businesses when they’d passed on because there were no children of their own. So, they’d been looking for alternatives that would ensure their business empire would continue after their death in the hands of competent people. They were glad they’d stumbled onto Anelia who had the willingness to learn and work hard and valued opportunities she’s been given. Her own ancestors had to do that when they migrated to this land. Considering limited education, Anelia obviously had and her initial struggle with language as a migrant she was an amazingly talented find.

Over the next few years Anelia continued to shine in her newly found profession and she was rewarded well for her contribution as a leading salesperson. When the head of sales for the department store reported her husband had been offered a better position in the west and she’d be leaving with him Joseph Golding had no hesitation in appointing Anelia to that position to the jealous anger of those who felt they should have been considered for this top sales position because of their seniority. Some left but others eagerly filled their places and Anelia bought much discipline and professionalism to the department. Anelia studied her children’s schoolbooks as they progressed in their years of education, and they helped her with assignments she found difficulty with until she was quite proficient in studies.

The Goldings tested the children carefully gradually giving them more important duties and were exposed by Joseph to the principles of management as they worked with him in his office on weekends in addition to menial tasks. The Golding husband and wife were satisfied. They were worth the investment so when their lower education was complete, they’d sponsor them through college and university. Then they called Anelia for a conference and disclosed their plan to see if they could get her approval.

Joseph and Martha Golding were looking ahead to their eventual retirement and wanted to begin work on a succession plan. The New York department store was about to lose its general manager in retirement and Joseph wanted to elevate Anelia to the general manager understudy position in his remaining months with the store to eventually take over. Was she willing? She knew she could do the job and felt she was a match for anyone who’d likely be a challenger. So, it was agreed. But then came the hard part and they braced for a possible angry reaction from her.

They explained they had no children and relatives who’d normally inherit the Golding business empire didn’t have the aptitude and dedication to run the multifaceted business conglomerate and they felt their businesses would fail because of their ineptitude.

These relatives would be satisfied with a large financial settlement when both Joseph and Martha were laid to rest, so they’d see that was built into respective wills, to satisfy their extended family. The extended family already benefited from their generosity liberally dished out to them when they came calling for help and would expect recognition in a will. Would Anelia consider allowing Joseph and Martha to adopt her children and make them the Goldring heirs to their assets? They waited for an expected explosion before putting their case further.

Anelia sat in thought processing this. She’d been overjoyed at the news of her planned elevation to the top level at the department store and mused at the thought one of her children could possibly be her ultimate boss someday in the future. It would be a strange role reversal indeed. Surprisingly she didn’t take it as an insult their name would be changed in this proposal, but this thought was tempered by what this would mean when it came to pride in their ancestry. She was proud to be Hungarian and believed her humble village training had given her a foundation for what she was doing now in terms of attitude perception and hard work. But it would give her children a future she could never dream of giving them and that was the most important thing for her. So, she put other feelings aside and turned to face her anxious benefactors.

“I’ll explain this to my children as soon as I get home and if they are agreeable then I’d agree to your proposal to ensure a good future for my children. Are you suggesting they’d have to change their names?”

“They’d have a Golding surname, but their Christian names Steven and Esther would naturally remain the same.”

Anelia spent some time thinking again then spoke.

“Everyone knows them as Steven and Esther but on their birth certificates they are recorded as Istvan and Eszti. Those are Hungarian names people here seem to have problems pronouncing so the ghetto children renamed them, and this seems to have stuck.”

“We are flexible on that so let’s see how your children feel about this whole proposal and we will work with them on details if they are willing for us to adopt them. It would mean they’d move into the mansion, and we’d hope you’d consider moving with them as you’ll always be considered their real mother. You’d have your own suite of rooms and come and go as you please as you’d be considered part of the Golding family and have access to our transportation as you needed it. No more paying rent to us as you’ve been doing for a while now as you’d be family.”

The children were a little fearful at being drawn into a class of society they’d no experience with, but Anelia urged them to accept this generous offer giving them a future they otherwise could never dream of. She urged them to study hard and succeed to make her a proud parent and disclosed she’d be moving into the mansion with them to help with this further cultural transition. So, it was agreed, they moved, and the cultural adaptation began. Joseph and Martha showered the children with affection supported by Anelia who pushed them into serious studies as they progressed into university.

The children had decided on legalizing their names Steven and Esther as these names were better understood and legal work was finalized for their adoption into the Golding family. Both children excelled in their studies. Steven in economics and Esther in hospitality.

 Joseph Golding planned to rotate Steven in management positions in all but his hotel industries to gain experience. Esther decided to confine her interests to the hotels and was rotated between them and in different positions to gain a thorough knowledge of that industry. Joseph and Martha were delighted with the children’s academic excellence and progress in their training through various enterprises of the family and looked forward to the day when they’d learned sufficiently to take top responsible positions. Both children often accompanied Joseph as he ranged around the country between his various corporate assets and learned much as they watched him in action.

Martha Golding died unexpectedly of a heart attack at age sixty-eight and they all mourned her passing, and specially Anelia as this was the woman who’d miraculously changed the fortunes of her and her family. Joseph deeply mourned the loss of his beloved life partner and was supported by Anelia and the children through his long grieving process. The two children now responsible and experienced administrators worked together to take more of Joseph’s load, and he gladly deferred to them beginning to feel his age at seventy. Anelia became his rock and constant companion though the two didn’t feel their relationship was more than platonic.

Anelia realized the two children now mature adults each needed someone in their lives to bring them comfort when Joseph and she were no longer there so cast about looking for eligible partners trying to direct her children’s eyes to a married life to support them in their business successes. They’d need that stabilizing factor as they faced problems of life and business and coming home to a wife or husband with children would provide that balance.

Eventually both children realized this missing factor in their life needed to be addressed as they watched friends and business associates one by one develop relationships and marry to move into the circle of marrieds and leave their former single friends behind. Each in turn eventually found partners of their own to share life with.

Joseph was losing his zest now and decided to retire designating Steven as the president and Esther as vice president of his holding company and custodian of his majority seventy percent shareholding. He took Anelia with him as they enjoyed cruises and trips abroad then on an impulse on one of the cruises proposed to Anelia. She quickly accepted and they were wedded by the captain on their current cruise.

Shortly after that Joseph died and Anelia returned to the mansion where Steven now lived with his wife and waited impatiently for them to produce her first grandchild so she could enjoy being a constant companion to the child while her son and daughter in law followed their chosen careers.

Then Esther had her first child and Anelia spent some time enjoying yet another grandchild to spoil. She could now alternate between Steven and Esther’s homes and was always welcomed.

She was greatly comforted after the shocking revelation when the doctor told her she had a fatal disease that would quickly take her life but her two children rallied and gave her loving support as she lingered fighting to the end.  She died peacefully in her sleep to be greatly mourned by her children.

It was only after going through her personal effects the children discovered a whole library of her written memories in diaries they discovered and sought out a professional to put those into a biography of this amazing woman whose spirit and hard work had bought them to the notice of the Goldings and made it possible for them to enjoy the lifestyle they had today.


Copyright Notice

© Copyright 2023 Ian Grice, “ianscyberspace.” All rights reserved.

10 thoughts on “From Poverty to Prosperity Chapter 2

  1. This story is a great reminder of history and the lives of those who survived the war.they also brought their culture with them and this story is a testimony of how people pulled together and created a future for their descendants.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Western countries owe a lot to migrants. They have enhanced our eating pleasures with delectable dishes bought with them and were the driving force behind big projects that needed a good work ethic to bring to fruition for the benefit of their adopted societies. We still need that work ethic.


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