Knowing When To Let Go With Family Wealth
“How do I transfer wealth to my children without spoiling them?” That would be the most common question I am asked, and for most people, stands at the heart of the challenge of wealth transition.
But often this question masks what parents really want, e.g. “how do I get my children to do/be what I want?” That question is not about wealth, but about parental power and control. And when parents say “I don’t want to rule from the grave”, often they actually do, but just don’t want to make it quite so obvious.
There are no simple answers, nor even a set of tactics that can be applied. Rather, these questions are the starting point of a family relationship journey, which can lead to a stronger and more robust family that understands its purpose and shared values, and is well governed.
As much as wealth creators and incumbent controllers of family wealth want to control the future of their family, an important part of the journey is learning how to let go, which is often needed to help your children to become everything they can be.
Consider This: Do you (incumbent generation) have a clear understanding of your family’s (wealth) goals? Is there consensus on this amongst those now in control of the wealth? What steps have you taken to (a) find out what the rising generation want, and (b) communicate what you want to them?
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- How a UBS Exec Gets Families to Open Up About Wealth Transfer
- Tips to Ease Family Inheritance Tensions
- How Much Inheritance Is Too Much?
- Trying to Control Your Heirs’ Behavior From the Grave Often Backfires
Here is more on reading on wealth transition.
Also published on LI as Letting Go.