REVIEW: Philanthropy Heirs & Values: How Successful Families are Using Philanthropy to Prepare Their Heirs

Written by Roy Williams and Vic Preisser © 2005

Another excellent resource from the Institute for Preparing Heirs.  Much of family business literature speaks to the issue of talking to children early and frequently about wealth, what it means and how to prepare for its transfer; however, Roy and Vic actually take this matter a step further. They believe that philanthropy is a great way to prepare heirs regarding wealth and its implications. As with many of the Institute’s publication, this one starts with the research regarding philanthropy and its implications for Family Business members. What is unique about this book is the roadmap of developmental stages, ways to speak with and reach the heirs as well as specific ways to check for their understanding.

Each stage is described and given an age range. After you understand the stage and its implications there are specific exercises and opportunities outlined that can be used to teach children. In each stage the categories that are being checked for are values, mission, and accountability. Vic and Roy do a great job of integrating small case studies that relate to each section exploring both well prepared and less than prepared families. This is a great resource for any family business owner who wants to start creating wealth literate heirs.