Help Others & Build Character

April 14, 2022Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Helping other people is powerful. One of the main concerns of families I work with is how the financial success of the family will affect the rising generation. They are particularly concerned about the potential negative effects. I’ve worked with families for many years; family has been my area of focus in many realms. I’ve worked in different roles with some of the wealthiest and poorest families in America. I’ve consistently witnessed when families (regardless of their level of wealth) Read more »

Phoenix of Fatherhood

January 9, 2022Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Last month’s blog, Wet Leaves and Humility , left me in a humiliated but (slightly) wiser position as a father and consultant to business and legacy wealth families. Please read it over if you have not (only takes a couple of minutes to read) – it sets the stage for this blog. In a nutshell, my last blog tells the story of how I thought I was doing something well and my son pointed out that he had a much better way to do Read more »

Wet Leaves and Humility

December 5, 2021Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Stories of fatherhood can be embarrassing. They are often instructive. For me, this tale has been both. I’m a parent to sons ages 23 (Jeremy) and 20 (Matthew). The older and wiser they get, the less intelligent I seem to be. I’m getting used to it. We have a pool in our backyard and we closed it for winter in late September. It has a huge tarp over it. In NJ this time of year, there are lots of leaves. Read more »

Toddlers and Wealth Stewardship

September 20, 2021Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I’ve seen quite a bit in my work with families who share complex assets across generations (businesses, real estate, investments, trusts, foundations…) And I continue to find support, from families and professionals who serve them, for my ideas and creative strategies for developing stewards at the youngest of ages – before they are born and during the first few years of life. Before birth? Yes. Couples can clarify the meaning of wealth and how they hope it will serve future Read more »

Inheritor’s Wisdom

June 24, 2021Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I was recently speaking to a client who received a significant amount of money from his parents upon graduation from college. He lived simply during college, starting in your average dorm and moving on to sharing an old house (without air conditioning or other upgrades) in a worn-down, high crime neighborhood with a bunch of friends. He also worked very hard earning degrees in a fine art and finance. He always struck me as humble and kind, frequently looking at Read more »

Resistance

May 27, 2021Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Sigmund Freud was known for a lot of things. What most non-psychoanalysts are unaware of is his foundational idea of the importance of RESISTANCE – in psychotherapy and in life. Freud believed that as much as people seemed to be clear about what they wanted in life, they also often resisted getting it – usually in ways they were unaware of. Without getting lost in a rabbit hole of psychoanalytic theory, here is his basic premise: people are openly aware Read more »

Family Business South Dakota Style

April 17, 2021Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

On April 29th, I’ll be presenting at the  Prairie Family Business Association’s 29th Annual Conference . I presented in 2015 and love the state of South Dakota and wish I could be there in person this year. The conference is a hybrid and I’ll be virtual. The good news is, wherever you may be located, you can join this great conference with excellent content and more than 400 attendees. I’ll be speaking about raising children in the context of a family business (FB) – a topic I’m Read more »

Teens Role in Family Spending Decisions?

January 13, 2021Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I was captivated by a recent Wall Street Journal article entitled, “Should Parents Involve Their Teenagers in Big Spending Decisions?” The article featured two financial advisors with opposing views on this question. I thought I’d weigh in. Lazetta Rainey Braxton, co-CEO at 2050 Wealth Partners in New York, basically says that “if done right, it can be empowering and educational,” while Michelle Perry Higgins, a financial planner and principal at California Financial Advisors in San Ramon, Calif., says teenagers shouldn’t have a say in these decisions. Ms. Rainey Braxton is basically taking the tack Read more »

Deepening New Client Conversations

September 23, 2020Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I was recently speaking to a friend and colleague about the conversations he has with new clients. He is one of a new wave of wealth managers (and other professionals) who are as interested in getting to know the full picture of their client’s lives as they are about investment and planning strategies. He asked for my thoughts on deepening client conversations. Opening up conversations about money, business, family and legacy with a new client or even a prospect can Read more »

Ethical Wills – Share Your Love and Wisdom!

August 13, 2020Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting

Several years ago, I wrote about ethical wills. While they sound “legal”, they are not legal documents at all. An ethical will is a letter to children, grandchildren, really any loved ones, written to express wisdom, values, life lessons. It is a way to transfer non-financial/non-material wealth. Best shared when the writer is still alive, there can be invaluable interaction between the writer and recipients. I found the process of writing my own (shared in the blog several years ago) Read more »