December 17, 2014

From Sage Hill: Are Our Children Thankful For Their Inheritance?

CharitableContributionsAn inspiring Thanksgiving message about family philanthropy by Philip J. Toffel, Esq., CEO of Sage Hill Advisory & Management:

I find that many of my friends, family and I truly think about how thankful we are … for the somewhat obvious health, happiness, friends, family…but also, in many cases, thankful to have been taught and mentored to feel good about ourselves.

Yes, thankful not for what earthly goods have been gifted to us; but rather having been provided with the tools to build our own sense of accomplishment, pride, and self-worth…. yes, self-worth.

Please take a moment to read my colleague Coventry’s Inheriting Well. She and I are squarely together in our thinking…she nails the ‘heart’ of the issue when she indicates “we heard again and again in our interviews that adult children of the wealthy do not feel successful unless they are making their own money.”

It’s not about creating trusts with interval distributions at ages 30, 35, 40… it’ s not about matching a dollar of trust funds for a dollar earned….it’s about teaching & mentoring our children, providing the tools, designating trustees after our deaths to be teachers & mentors and not trust administrators (trustees hire accountants and administrators for these functions), establishing family councils so that young generations are truly part of a family culture of care, human support, teaching & mentoring.

Remember how good you felt when, after your Mom or Dad taught you, you first rode your bicycle by yourself without training wheels… Yes, that’s the feeling!!!