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Four Tips to Engage Your Clients in Family Giving

Talking to clients about Multigenerational giving can increase satisfaction and build your practice.

The wealth transfer in the United States over the next two decades is estimated to be nearly thirty trillion dollars. Talking with your clients about multigenerational charitable giving is an excellent opportunity to deepen your relationships, increase client satisfaction and set your practice up for continued future success.

Our Philanthropic Services team shares four tips for engaging your clients in multigenerational giving discussions, as well as ways the Foundation can support you in these efforts.

1. Talk to Your Clients About Charitable Giving

The first thing you can do is to simply have a conversation with your clients about their charitable giving goals — both now and in the future. You might ask them:

  • What charities, causes and organizations do you care about?
  • How do you like to give?
  • What are your giving goals?
  • How do you envision your legacy?
  • Do you have a plan for how you’d like your family to continue to support your passions?

By learning your clients’ passions, interests and legacy wishes, you can help them begin to craft a long-term plan for their philanthropy.

Ways we can help: Our Philanthropic Services team can help you craft questions, facilitate conversations and provide tools, such as our digital donor toolkit — which helps individuals and family identify their goals and passions.

2. Encourage Family Giving Conversations

Once you have an idea about your clients' giving passions and goals — as well as how they’d like to engage their family — invite them to include their children or grandchildren in giving conversations.

Establishing who may be involved will help your clients clarify and hone their plans, while also establishing important relationships that will allow you to continue to support the family for years to come.

“At the Foundation, we often work with a donor’s successor advisors before they have responsibility for a fund,” says Director of Philanthropic Services Rebecca Stibbe. “With the donor’s permission, we can ensure a smooth future transition by having the successor advisors know well in advance who we are, and how we can support them on their giving journey.”

Including families in giving decisions can also be rewarding and fun. Foundation donors Sally and Karen started early with their two young sons, asking the boys to participate in family giving decisions, while donors George and Judy have extended their family giving practice to include their nine grandchildren.

Ways we can help: Our donor toolkit includes a module on family philanthropy, and our philanthropic advisors can provide other tools to encourage family conversations too. We can also help your clients engage family members by crafting legacy letters, which help donors elaborate on what giving back means to them.

3. Explore Fund Options Available to Your Clients

After learning about their philanthropic goals and how your clients want to engage their families, the next value-add you can provide is to share the products your clients could use to fulfill their giving vision.

At the Foundation, we offer several fund options, including donor advised funds. Donor advised funds provide giving flexibility, while also allowing multiple generations to be involved in a family’s philanthropy.

Ways we can help: We would be happy to have a conversation with you, your clients or any combination of your clients and family members to review fund options.

4. Work With Clients’ Family Members on Their Terms

When working with your clients’ family members, it is important to both share your clients’ charitable visions with them while also recognizing and honoring that the next generation may have their own charitable visions and goals.

Whenever that time comes, we are happy to work with you, your clients, and their other professional advisors to explore the best options to support and accomplish their specific goals.

Our team of philanthropic advisors can help you grow your current client relationships and create new ones with their family, friends and loved ones. To learn more about charitable giving and how you can partner with us, contact a member of our philanthropic advisor team.

Photo by RJL Photography

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