Families in The News



Orkin Family Feud

This is a classic story, one that can tear your heart open, about a well-meaning, successful father, who had started from nothing, but had great common sense and willingness to work hard. I'm sure, as with many of us, at times, it was at the expense of his family. His good intentions, based upon his instincts and common sense, recognized the danger his businesses and estate faced, by allowing future heirs access to wealth with no controls. He was well aware of the 70% failure rate he, personally, had witnessed, and had read about.

Being the caring father he was, he asked his professional advisors how to avoid this and they, using the best strategy and structure they could develop, combined with the tools of the best governance, preservation and tax reduction techniques they could provide, gave him the peace of mind he was seeking. The problems occurred much later.

We've all seen and read about similar situations, and have watched it unfold in family after family--the breakdown of trust and communication, with no knowledgeable skills on how to correct the problems; about heirs, who have never been allowed to take risks, in order to develop competence, which leads to confidence, which leads to self -esteem. They have not been participants in the values, mission and glossary development, therefore, not participants in the role-development process, which would identify the roles that would be needed to fulfill the family mission.

The question? How can heirs possibly be expected to have an interest, or passion, in any role, if they do not even know one exists? How, then, can they prepare themselves? Most families do not even agree on what wealth means, let alone what trust is and how to address the breakdown of trust or betrayal within the family. All these problems can be avoided.

Read the Forbes article