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Passing on a Family Business:

From President and Principal Matt Kane

Over the past few years, we’ve been helping one of our clients transition their family business from generation one to generation two. In that process, two factors require intentionality and care:

  • What will happen to the business itself?
  • What are the next generation'(s) expectations in terms of the estate?

When a family business represents a significant portion of your wealth, open communication is critical. In this client’s situation, it has been communicated that one of the children will assume ownership of the business. Now, we are talking through the next generation’s expectations when it comes to the impact on the estate.

This family’s willingness to explore open, honest dialogue has produced a lot of healthy conversations. By inviting the next generation’s participation, they’re working towards alignment and preventing many opportunities for relational damage.

If you’d like to read a few more thoughts on keeping a business in the family, you can read them here. More importantly, we’d like to invite you to open the conversation with us. We have experience helping families navigate these decisions–and the conversations they require. We’d welcome the opportunity to walk through them with you.

Conversation Starters: We’re big fans of talking about money. There aren’t enough places to have safe, thoughtful, caring conversations about the topic. Family should be one of those places. Here are conversation starters for you to consider using around the dinner table, on a coffee run, or when you are watching your grandkids for a weekend!

  • Why is it important to save money?
  • What is the difference between a want and a need?
  • Remember the first time you bought something with your own money? What did you buy? How did you get the money?
    Take time to share your stories, too … not just your thoughts on how you think they should think about it. What questions do you think are important?

We’d love to hear your ideas about talking to kids about money. It’s never too early to start!

Phones and Our Teens: The Atlantic published an article that caught our attention this week. It starts like this, “Something went suddenly and horribly wrong for adolescents in the early 2010s. By now you’ve likely seen the statistics: Rates of depression and anxiety in the United States—fairly stable in the 2000s—rose by more than 50 percent in many studies from 2010 to 2019. The suicide rate rose 48 percent for adolescents ages 10 to 19. For girls ages 10 to 14, it rose 131 percent.”

The author goes on to share about areas of decline: mental health, loneliness, friendlessness, reading, and math scores. We have to pay attention.

We talk with clients on a daily basis who are wrestling with these issues. Communication is at the core of so much financial planning and thinking about the legacy you want to leave for your family, which is why we find these issues so important. We’d love to join the conversation with you.

Read the full article here.

What the Research Says: Pew Research recently conducted a survey of U.S. teens aged 13 to 17 who were still living in their parents’ house. They sought to find out how aware teens are of the positive and negative aspects of smartphone use.

  • 72% of the teens surveyed said they often feel ‘peaceful’ without their smartphone, while only 44% said it gives them a kind of separation anxiety.
  • While two-thirds of the majority of teens said they don’t take actions to curb their phone use, 41% of teen girls and 32% of teen boys have taken direct steps to limit their phone use, rates which go higher when asked specifically about social media apps.
  • 72% of teens replied that going about their day without their phone makes them feel peaceful, while 74% said it made them feel “happy.”
  • By comparison, just 39% of teens said they’re left feeling lonely without their phone.

It’s never too late to press in with our children (or grandchildren), pull them out of their phones, and bring them closer to the things that matter so much more.

Our long-time friend Andy Crouch wrote one of the best titles that practically confronts the issues we all face in the iPhone age. He wrote The Tech-Wise Family and later, My Tech-Wise Life with his daughter, Amy. If you’re interested, please reach out and we’d happily pass along a copy of one of them to you.