Prepare for some messy family brawls and disloyal kids as you plan to capture the next generation of wealthy clients, according to several top advisors who spoke Thursday at the MarketCounsel conference in Las Vegas.
The transition planning “often has to do with family dynamics—‘Do I want to give all this money to my children?’” said Grant Rawdin, president and CEO of Wescott Financial Advisory Group.
“Oftentimes, there’s dysfunction, [and] relationships have been severed,” he said.
“We’ve got one [case] right now where it’s World War III,” said Ron Carson. “It’s all over money, and this is a billion-dollar family.”
Wescott Financial employs an organizational psychologist to work on these family money issues, Rawdin said.
Lori Van Dusen, a principal at LVW Advisors, said she uses John Engels, president of Leadership Coaching Inc., to help with messy family feuds.
“If the dynamics are really screwed up, it’s very difficult to get anything done,” Van Dusen said.
These top advisory firm owners, who all manage multiple billions in assets, also warned about the challenges of keeping the money once clients die.
“I got a wake-up call a couple years ago when a client on my advisory counsel said, ‘My kids love you, but they’re not going to keep you,’” Carson said. “They don’t think you’re up to the times in the way they want to communicate with you.’”
Carson, like the other owners, has created separate levels of service for smaller accounts for the family members of clients.