Family Meetings:

Connecting Across Generations

The first step is to bring the family together to design their future with a meeting of the older and younger generations. Sounds simple, but actually this is a huge and sometimes difficult endeavor, entering new territory for the family. Some family members will be ready and familiar with family meetings, while others will be concerned or skeptical. I engage the family to set up and hold productive family gatherings.

One-day Exploratory
Family Briefing

This overview and family discussion draws on 30 years of practice and ongoing research about the experiences of long-lasting global families. It helps a family understand basic governance practices and what is possible for a successful family enterprise. This workshop gathers family members, maybe for the first time, to consider:

  • What is the purpose of our family wealth?
  • What are the most successful families doing together?
  • What are our legacy values and future goals?
  • How will we sustain and grow our family enterprises in the next generation?

Meeting Facilitation

 

Talking about the future is difficult because of the shadow of past events and family relationships. When a family meets to discuss their family enterprise, an experienced outside facilitator can help the family prepare an agenda, carry it out, and follow up their decisions. The gathering may include a handful to dozens of family members. Helping them communicate, stick to their agenda and resolve difficult issues is a much needed skill. I help families develop an agenda, ground rules and a Code of Conduct, to prepare and work together creatively, in order to end up with an Action Plan.

Family Dialogue about
Difficult Issues

It is hard to talk openly about family wealth. Conflict can build up when family members find it easier to avoid than to talk about differences. An outside mediator can help each family member find a voice to express concerns and work together to find resolution. I help families set up productive conversations where they feel comfortable and safe, are able to discuss their concerns and differences responsibility, and move toward resolution.

Resources

Six Dimensions of Wealth: Leaving the Fullest Value of Your Wealth to Your Heirs

This article explores six forms of wealth that families can pass on to their heirs: spiritual, financial, human, family, structural and societal capital. It defines the practices that add value to each dimension and how financial planners can help family members add to their pool of family capital.

Talking it Through

A guide to conducting effective multi-generational family meetings about business and wealth.

Family Conflict: Keep Out of the Ring

Family conflict can spiral out of control and before you know it there are legal advisors involved benefiting neither family nor business. Dennis Jaffe explains the alternative ways of resolving conflict before it reaches to the boxing ring stage.
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