Families meet for many reasons. Birthdays. Holidays. Reunions. Special occasions or merely because they like being together. However, joining for an event specifically designated as a family meeting is less frequent. Yet, it is one of the most important gatherings a family can have.
Fans of the television show Blue Bloods enjoy watching the multi-generational family dinners. The fictional Reagans also hold family meetings when important issues pop up. We believe family meetings should be scheduled before there are issues and while all generations are still active. HFA recently held a Lunch & Learn seminar on this subject, which was a big success. Some of our guests have already scheduled family meetings.
A family meeting should be designed to map out what you want to happen in the future. Possible reasons for a family meeting include:
- Promote Stewardship, which is the responsible oversight and protection of something worth caring for and preserving.
- Share values as well as estate and financial plans.
- Embrace the challenge to discuss thoughtful planning and its impact on family members.
- Perpetuate a family legacy.
- Discuss multi-generational planning.
- Judiciously communicate details when all generations are still living.
- Prepare heirs for future roles and responsibilities.
- Establish a forum for collaborative decisions.
- Educate heirs on financial literacy or estate planning.
- Create an atmosphere of trust.
- Open lines of communication that may have closed.
- Establish family leadership roles and responsibilities.
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