Borrowed from Your Grandchildren

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2020-02-26
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc

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Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?


Families share how they have maintained and grown their wealth from generation to generation. 

While creating wealth is a wonderful achievement, business families are also concerned with how their wealth is used to support their values, the lives of their children and the well-being of the community. Over several generations, families who are successful in growing their wealth have been able to reinvent themselves and their business in the face of significant environmental transformations and internal differences cause by family dynamics. Borrowed from my Grandchildren is a fascinating look at how large, long-lasting business families succeed across generations. 

Author Dennis T. Jaffe, one of the leading architects of the field of family enterprise consulting, has interviewed members of successful, well known, 100-year family enterprises from 20 countries, who serve as role models for those wishing to see their wealth positively impact their children, employees, and communities. Half continue to own their legacy business and others have gone on to become family offices with a portfolio of shared assets, but all these families have sustained their values and identity as a family over more than three generations.  

Offering the collected wisdom of nearly 100 global business families, this insightful book shares the real-life stories of partners in business and wealth management over three of more generations. Families that generate rather than reduce their wealth across generations, known as Generative Families, focus on engaging across generations and develop collaborative governance for both family and business to ensure responsible stewardship from one generation to the next. 

This unique resource:

  • Presents real-life stories of families sustaining wealth over generations
  • Explores both the successes and failures of retaining family wealth
  • Includes rare private insights from members of prominent wealthy families
  • Examines the nature of global family enterprises and their evolution over generations
  • Discusses the financial, human, and social dimensions of wealth

Borrowed from my Grandchildren: The Evolution of Stewardship in 100-Year Families is an essential read for family members, non-family executives, family offices, estate planning lawyers, family business consultants, trust officers, philanthropic and foundation advisors, financial advisors, financial planners, CPAs, and other finance professionals.

Author Biography

DENNIS T. JAFFE, PhD, has, for the past 40 years, been one of the leading architects of the field of family enterprise consulting. As both an organizational consultant and clinical psychologist, he helps global multi-generational families develop governance practices that build leadership in succeeding generations and ensure financial stability. His work with families helps inform his training of financial advisors and wealth managers about the knowledge and skills needed to serve their client families. He is an acclaimed speaker and workshop leader in programs for business families and financial service firms. He has written several books that guide business families in working together to build thriving enterprises. His website is

Table of Contents

Foreword: Rice Paddy to Rice Paddy xv

Preface xxi

Part One The Wisdom of Generative Families 1

Chapter 1 Learning from the Best: Researching Long-Term Family Enterprises 3

Chapter 2 Creating a Great Family: The Virtuous Circle of Family and Business 19

Chapter 3 The Social History of Family Dynasties 35

Part Two The Evolution of the Resilient Family Enterprise 59

Chapter 4 The First Four Generations 61

Chapter 5 Business Resiliency: Common Transformations Along the Path 87

Chapter 6 The Generative Alliance: Building and Sustaining a Values-Based Culture 113

Chapter 7 Corporate Social Responsibility: Changing the World from Local to Global 151

Chapter 8 Owners’ Mindset: Stewardship and the Board of Directors 177

Part Three Inside the Family: Family Governance to Create a Great Family 199

Chapter 9 The Family Tribe: Creating Purposeful Extended Family Community Beyond the Enterprise 201

Chapter 10 Governance: Organizing the Interconnection of Family and Business 215

Chapter 11 The Family Council: Conducting the Work of the Family 237

Chapter 12 The Family Constitution: Governing Document of the Generative Family 259

Part Four The Rising Generation: Sustaining the Future 283

Chapter 13 Releasing the Potential of the Rising Generation: How to Develop Capable Successors 285

Chapter 14 Family as a Cross-Generational Learning Community 309

Chapter 15 Family Philanthropy: Balancing Roots and Wings 333

Chapter 16 Reflections on the Economic and Social Future of Family Enterprise 351

Appendix: Tools for Families (and Advisors) 357

About the Author 361

About the Research Team 365

About Wise Counsel Research Associates 369

Acknowledgments 371

Index 373

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