The year 2020 has been the year of relationships. The sudden anxiety and uncertainty of the pandemic had us all pivot to the well-being and safety of those around us. Families found time to reconnect with each other and to have Zoom chats with friends they hadn’t seen in a while to check in. The collective recognition of the fragility of life made more urgent the need to have meaningful conversations. We told people how much we care and what they mean to us.
The families we work with have stepped boldly into these conversations, developing even greater levels of trust, stronger alignment to make decisions more quickly, and increased focus on getting the next generation to take on bigger roles. One family who had not been in the same room for 15 years came together to repair their relationships and align on how to best take care of their ailing parents, while reuniting their next generation. In another, the family business suffered as the pandemic limited distribution. The family engaged in powerful conversations about how they could be a contribution to the family wealth and developed shared expectations and guidelines to access their trusts.
Under pressure, they have had to think out of the box and take more risk and invite innovative ideas from the next generation to serve clients in new ways, while keeping employees safe during the pandemic. Many have expanded their community outreach and brought resources to more people in need. We saw next-generation family members of our clients find ways to distribute more than a thousand turkeys, connect at-risk youth with mentors, take a leading role in a family foundation, and commit their time to charities, among other powerful actions.
It is our hope that the silver lining of gratitude that has graced so many of our family conversations this year, the innovation that has emerged to adapt to unprecedented challenges, and the increased generosity for those in need continues into 2021. May it be your best year yet.