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Who decides philanthropy in your family

Who makes the philanthropy decisions in your family?

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Family philanthropy can be a very effective way to bridge generations and engage the rising generation. However, according to a recent poll from Key Private Bank, there are significant differences between parents and children on matters of giving. Most parents are not discussing philanthropy with their children, let alone agreeing on causes. 82% of advisors say very few clients involve the next generation in family philanthropy. Faith-based causes represent 73% of interest from parents, but…

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Money and Family Dynamic in Conflict

Money and Family Dynamic; Resolving Conflict

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When seeking to deal with conflict in family business, it is essential to understand the impact of the family dynamic on a business. Conflict in family business happens differently, therefore must be resolved differently. Disputes within a family don’t escalate suddenly. They are often built on years of relationship sentiment that is latent or suppressed. The triggers for those conflicts can be the smallest thing, because they are just the straw that breaks the camel’s…

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Snapshot conflict in family wealth

Snapshot; conflict in family wealth

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The conflicts that take place within wealthy families are often on display through the media as a result of their public profiles (and because people want to read about them). For outsiders, they can be hard to understand: What are they fighting about? Surely there is enough there for everyone? But in fact, wealthy families have all the same family issues as others: sibling rivalries, favouritism, jealousy, power struggles, and the search for identity. The…

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Are you a wealth creator or wealth inheritor?

Are you a wealth creator or wealth inheritor?

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Wealthy people broadly come in two flavours – wealth creators and wealth inheritors – and each have very different characteristics. Attitudes to money and wealth are usually established as we grow up and largely remain with us for the duration of our lives. Creators often grow up without a lot of money and therefore have different attitudes to spending and the value of a dollar, are uncomfortable talking about it with their children, and often…

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Perspectives on the disclosure of information to beneficiaries of family trusts

Legal and Non-Legal Perspectives on the issue of Disclosure to Beneficiaries of Family Trusts

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I thought I would re-share this co-written article last year with me and Henry Brandts-Giesen for the New Zealand Law Society about two different perspectives on information disclosures for family trust beneficiaries. I discuss the the humanistic perspective while Henry discusses the legal view of it. They put forward the trustee’s obligations and rights in this article. Original Article: https://www.lawsociety.org.nz/practice-resources/practice-areas/trusts/perspectives-on-the-disclosure-of-information-to-beneficiaries-of-family-trusts For additional in-depth, thought-provoking discussion points and commentary on family and business, sign-up to gain…

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Transition or Plan B?

Transition or Plan B?

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Kenny Rogers sang of the importance of knowing “when to hold ’em, and when to fold ’em”. Any succession plan worth its salt isn’t just a plan of who will succeed whom in running the business. It also needs a “Plan B” for the scenarios where the chosen successor is unwilling or unable, where there is no successor, or where a generational transition of the business might lead to serious conflict. Some business founders/owners enjoy…

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Finanxial Advisors leaving the market

Succession – for advisors

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Financial advisors are an ‘old’ bunch – with an average age in their mid-50s and a big bulge of advisors now in their 60s and 70s. If that didn’t already pose a risk to their clients, the COVID-induced recession means that many of them will leave sooner than expected – either by choice or otherwise – and may choose to retire completely in the current economic environment. Merrill Lynch, perhaps in response to both issues,…

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Family Values under COVID-19 Pressure by David Werdiger

Family Values Under COVID-19 Pressure

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Imagine this scenario: a family owns an operating business, with a non-family member as CEO. In response to COVID-19, the CEO takes the necessary actions to ensure the business’s survival. That might mean cutting staff, closing stores, or putting harsh terms on suppliers/customers. The business is stabilised and able to return to a stable footing through the crisis. But something is amiss – there is a discomfort among family members about some of the specific…

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Family Governance

Family governance: why? when?

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When family wealth is controlled or owned by a single person (usually the wealth creator), things are simple. But at some point, the wealth will likely pass to more than one person – the wealth creator’s children. In respect of the family wealth, the members of the family are bound together through three circles of involvement: family, business and ownership. That adds a huge degree of complexity, as no decision gets made in isolation. Strong…

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Entrepreneurial Legacy

Entrepreneurial Legacy

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Most wealth is created through entrepreneurship: taking a risk to start a business, and growing that business. Some families with generationally “old” money (i.e. more than 3-4 generations removed from the wealth creator) may have their family wealth in passive assets, and the entrepreneurial spirit that created it is long gone from memory, sometimes irretrievably lost. For families that hold (or acquire) operating assets, it’s important to maintain that entrepreneurial spirit in subsequent generations, but…

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