My last two blogs have been on Heritage Planning and last week we looked at some thought provoking questions to consider. This week we will cover the first 6 of the 12 Elements of Preserving Family Wealth.


Element #1 Foster Strong and effective communication, and build trust between generations

Effective communication is adult to adult, not adult to child. Allow your children to grow, learn and mature before entrusting them with a large inheritance. Teach your children why your legacy matters.

Element #2 Develop, maintain and regularly revisit your vision for the present and the future. Where there is no vision people perish.

A well defined vision is core for the present and future success of the family. Visit the topic of Heritage Planning often, instilling it into the minds of each member of your family. A Family Heritage Statement can focus your family on future goals and create a path to fulfill these goals: what are your values, history, life lessons, hopes and dreams?

Element #3 Successful Families meet regularly

Some families are dotted all over the map. Be sure to reconnect in fun ways like family vacations, meeting up at holidays and birthdays. Create similar interests and be active in ministries, charities, volunteering, etc. When children get to see their parents involved in good causes as equals, your values and servanthood become part of the family’s legacy.

Element #4 Promote a Balanced Definition of Wealth. True wealth is far more than material assets.

 Foundation- Wealth is not only financial, it is comprised of your family, backgrounds, talents, personalities and attitudes.

Wisdom- Formal and informal education, work ethic, spiritual life, family stories and life lessons, are all virtues that lead to a stronger responsibility towards your family’s legacy.

Community- Citizenship, philanthropy, and volunteer work create a lasting bond between you family and the community.

Financial- Personal property can be sentimental. Make memories in your home. Think of your home as the place where your family unit thrives.


Element #5 Keep the family business (including investments) separate from the business of being a family.

Understand that while you are a family that owns an inheritance (business), you are not a business that owns a family. When your family and communication are strong, your family business and legacy will thrive. Allow the family and family business (financial inheritance) to succeed on their own as separate entities.

Element #6 Identify the ‘roles’ necessary for the family to be successful, non financially as well as financially.

Identify the different roles of the your family, everyone have different talents and interests such as business, financial, caregiving, creative, peacemaking and assistance roles. Help everyone to understand all the elements of the finances with open and honest communication. Don’t leave anyone in the dark.

Next week I will cover the last 6 of the 12 Elements of Preserving Family Wealth.

In the meantime, to learn more, contact me to find out how to get started on your family’s Heritage Plan today.