Go at it with a fresh mind

If there is one thing we try to instill in our children, its that they must look at every challenge without prejudice and preconceived ideas – a fresh, clear mind is key to any regenerative process and is the only way to arm them with positivism when challenges get really tough. And what is true for your children, is true for yourself and for the advice that you solicit.

Ask yourself, are your advisors thinking outside the box?

Are they creative enough in their approach? If you sense that you are being presented off-the-shelf products when your issues demand in–depth personalized attention, you may be approaching a crossroad. And as your issues become increasingly complex, the only confirmed solutions will be those that have been conceived specifically to suit your problems.

If you haven’t made any profound change over the past two decades, your approach to handling your estate is likely getting tired, antiquated and lacking in optimization. But learning to use old tools to play new music is an exciting and a gratifying process – especially when you start seeing results.

Perhaps the most banal example is your relationship with your bank. Although you’ll have a hard time acknowledging that there is value in the fact that your decades-old relationship with your private banker has now been replaced by a virtual one – you know that technology has changed the business. Your relationship with your bank has changed. You haven’t changed but the way you do things probably has. You may be handling most of your communication and transactions over the internet and relying on your bank for the same classical banking services that you had before – but the bank is no longer your main source of advice!

It’s amusing to think that Private banking actually began with the family office. A wonderful example is the Rothschild family that opened a little family office a couple of hundred years go – a family office which would become the world’s largest bank and the name which became one of the most common descriptors and references for money. In today’s regulatory environment banks find it far more difficult to lend and businesses to borrow from the classical financial structures. In an effort to keep nimble, companies are looking for alternative sources from which to borrow. This vacuum is being filled by private equity/debt funds which are financed / backed by… you guessed it – family offices. And so, history goes full circle.

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