College Admission Scandal: Unearned Opportunity

April 22, 2019Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

The recent college admission scandal highlights one of the most significant issues wealthy parents encounter: just because you can, does not mean you should. The parents in this scandal seem to believe they were doing something positive for their children by paving admission into highly competitive universities through cheating and bribing. Although with the public eye on them at least some of the involved parents seem to feel some genuine shame. I wonder if somewhere inside they knew this was Read more »

NY Times Quote – Client Interview

January 17, 2019Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

In the November 16, 2018 “Wealth Matters” column in the NY Times, Paul Sullivan wrote about his interview with me and one of my family clients. My thanks to Paul and a special thanks to the Buckwald family – David, Jennifer, Jack & Morgan for their openness (and for their hospitality to the Times photographer who became stranded at their home overnight in a snowstorm while David was stranded elsewhere and could not make it home until the next morning!) Read more »

Wealth, Privilege & Leadership

December 26, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Last month, Sam Walker, writing in The Wall Street Journal, took on the issue of privilege in the context of Brett Kavanaugh’s testimony on Capitol Hill. I am not going to offer my opinions here about Kavanaugh and the hearings; Walker did not either. What Walker did address is the issue of how growing up in an affluent and “rarefied upbringing” might affect perceptions of leaders and how well they actually lead, especially when leading diverse teams. Walker makes an Read more »

Sharp Knives & Fire

December 26, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

My friend and colleague Pierre duPont, Partner at HPM Partners in New York City, recently wrote a great piece entitled, “Raising Children Into Wealth – Hungry, Productive and Compassionate.” I hope you will read it. One of his points really resonated with me and brought to mind the work I do coaching parents with significant wealth and working with them and their kids together: “…show your children that life is not about the things in it but about the people Read more »

The Conversation

December 26, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I recently received a referral from an attorney I’ve known for years. The referral was for a married couple who were both children of immigrants who valued education and had earned PhD degrees in science. They started a company that became wildly successful in terms of financial success and respect from colleagues and investors. The couple sold it for a large sum and when they decided to start another company, investors swooned and supplied cash. The couple had been having Read more »

A Candy Heir UPDATE

May 18, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

My June 2017 blog entitled A Candy Heir, the NHL and Next-Gen Passion, was based on a NY Times article about Nello Ferrara, heir to the Ferrara Candy Company (think Red Hots and Lemonheads among others). A few weeks after I posted the blog, I got an email from Nello himself. He came across the blog and it resonated with him; he asked if I’d like to call him and chat. We had a great conversation about family business and Read more »

Black Males, Wealth Depreciation & Racism

April 5, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I was born in 1966 to a mom who would have been a hippie or academic if she did not get married at 18 and start having kids so early.  My mom was passionate about her fight against oppression in all forms and impressed upon my sisters and me the importance of social equity for all regardless of race. The institution of slavery and its antithesis embodied in the Civil Rights movement, made it easy for a young kid like Read more »

Parenting as Governance

February 27, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Governance can be intimidating to business families and legacy wealth families who may not have operating businesses any longer but share and manage complex assets. This is especially true if they have not educated themselves about good governance and committed themselves to it. Governance is crucial for achieving both long term business/financial success and family harmony. Simply put, governance is coming together and getting clear about how decisions will be made, who will be involved with making decisions and in Read more »

NY Times Quote

January 9, 2018Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

I’m thankful to Paul Sullivan of the NY Times for taking interest in my work and interviewing me for his December 29th Wealth Matters column, “Keeping the Family Tree Alive.” I’ve been fortunate in my career to have worked with a wide range of interesting families from very poor and even homeless, to extremely wealthy. One of my favorite questions for wealthy families struggling with a particular challenge is, “How would this be different if you were poor?” That question Read more »

Happy Holidays – Make an Impact!

December 25, 2017Family Business Consulting, Family Wealth Consulting, Wealth Psychology Consulting

Friends and Colleagues – Happy Holidays and Wishing You a Great New Year!!! A donation has been made to the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (T.A.S.K.) in lieu of cards or gifts to our friends and colleagues. I’m coming up on my 10th year of volunteering at T.A.S.K. and it continues to be inspiring and energizing. The Patrons struggle to get by in a city bereft of opportunity and overwhelmed by violence, drugs, and desperation. Consistently, I am impressed by the Read more »