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Episode 12: How Family Philanthropy Can Strengthen Your Family Business

In this episode of the Family Biz Show, host Michael Palumbos is joined by Deborah Goldstein from Enlightened Philanthropy and Bruce DeBoskey from the DeBoskey Group to explore the intersection of family, business, and philanthropy. They delve into how philanthropy can be a powerful tool for family businesses, not just in terms of contributing to societal good, but also in strengthening the family unit itself and the business.

Deborah Goldstein shares her journey from the nonprofit world to founding Enlightened Philanthropy, emphasizing the unique needs of family foundations in navigating their philanthropic paths. She highlights the importance of understanding the nonprofit world to assist families in making informed decisions about their philanthropic efforts.

Bruce DeBoskey recounts his transition from a trial lawyer to leading the mountain states office of the Anti-Defamation League and eventually establishing the DeBoskey Group. He emphasizes the concept of effective philanthropy and how it can be a transformative process for both the donors and the recipients. DeBoskey also introduces the idea of philanthropy serving as a platform for the younger generation to learn vital life skills such as leadership, financial management, and empathy.

The discussion explores the concept of top-down philanthropy and its limitations, advocating for a more inclusive approach that allows all family members to contribute their perspectives and values. This inclusivity fosters better communication, deeper understanding, and ultimately a more impactful philanthropic effort.

The episode also touches on how family philanthropy can serve as a training ground for the next generation, instilling values, teaching decision-making, and promoting unity. By focusing on philanthropy, family members can work towards a common goal, learning to navigate differences and collaborate effectively.

In summary, this episode of the Family Biz Show with Michael Palumbos, featuring Deborah Goldstein and Bruce DeBoskey, underscores the significance of integrating philanthropy into family business practices. It highlights philanthropy's role in not only contributing to societal welfare but also in enhancing family cohesion, providing learning opportunities for younger members, and ensuring the sustainability of philanthropic efforts across generations.

Watch the entire episode!

Episode 12 Transcript

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Michael Palumbos: Hello, welcome everybody to the family biz show. My name is Michael Columbus with family wealth and legacy and I'll be your host today.

 

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Michael Palumbos: I am really excited to introduce everybody to two incredible guests that we have on the show today.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Deborah Goldstein from enlightened philanthropy and Bruce the boschi from the basket group and I, you know, as I have met many of the people that have been on the show and the both of

 

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Michael Palumbos: You through the purposeful planning Institute and the work that Johnny Warnecke and Jay Hughes and all that group, you know, put together and started us down a path of

 

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Michael Palumbos: Purposely thinking about, you know, wealth and philanthropy and we kind of all come together different at different spots. But here we are.

 

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Michael Palumbos: What I'd like to do and what I found to have been to be helpful is if each of you could take a minute and just kind of share your journey. How did you end up you know

 

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Michael Palumbos: In this enlightened philanthropy world or in the, you know, in working with

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know philanthropists and guiding them through you know that these conversations that you that you have with them. So Deborah, if you don't mind. What's your background and how did you end up doing what you're doing today.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Uh, well, I have kind of a circuitous route.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Um,

 

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Deborah Goldstein: I'll just say that

 

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Deborah Goldstein: I have worked in the nonprofit world on the, on the other side of things as a grants manager for years.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And while I really enjoyed that work, and I loved raising funds for the organizations that I was a part of

 

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Deborah Goldstein: When I started working more with family foundations, I saw that there was

 

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Deborah Goldstein: A real need there to help these families navigate their

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Their, their own philanthropic journey. And so, so in 2008 I went out on my own and created enlightened philanthropy and I'm and now have been

 

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Deborah Goldstein: On the journey on the other side of things. So I, I really appreciate that experience I had in the nonprofit world and I, that's certainly something that I bring to my work is that understanding of how a nonprofit operates and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Because I think that's a missing piece for some individuals and families is that world is a mystery. And so I can help bring that lens to my work with them. And since then, I've been working with individuals, families and also a lot of youth and teens and helping helping all of them.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Build their philanthropic and debt identities in this world. Right.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Thank you.

 

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Michael Palumbos: You're welcome. Bruce, give us a give us the

 

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Michael Palumbos: Five Minute. They're not five minutes. They give us the overview of how you got to where you are today.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Sure. Well, I started out as a trial lawyer I practice law for 25 years and my I had gone to law school to use laws tool for social change, because I felt that it was a really effective way for me to help

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Help people move forward in the world. And so for 25 years I was a trial lawyer in Denver, Colorado where I represented

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: A lot of people in a lot of very difficult circumstances, trying to level the playing field and get justice and after 25 years of fighting for a living.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: I decided to do something different and I left the law and I became the regional director of the mountain states office of the Anti Defamation League.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Which is 100 plus year old organization based in New York, but with regional offices across America and I ran them out and State's office and our primary job was fighting all forms of bigotry.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And I think it was in that that kind of context that

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: I became a fundraiser. And I raised money to support our nonprofit organization here in the mountain states and

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: I watched how people gave their money away and I was really surprised because I saw really well intentioned really smart really generous people

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: When it came to their philanthropy. They were usually disorganized and even more often not strategic so 10 years ago in 2010 I opened the device key group.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It's a philanthropic strategy consulting firm and we work with clients across the country, including, as you know, in Rochester.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: But across, across the country from coast to coast families, businesses now many foundations public foundations and family offices and we really help them answer two questions, and then I'll I'm almost done with my intro

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Two questions. The one is the obvious question that I knew we were going to be helping people answer and that is what difference do we want to make in the world.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: How do we want to change or preserve something of value out there outside our window. But the second question has emerged over a decade of this work and it's really what we're going to be talking about significantly today and that is what difference do we want to make for ourselves.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And I find that if you answer both questions. Well, you can create in a strategy to achieve both goals and be much more effective as a philanthropist so

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: A. What difference do you want to make in the world and be what difference do we want to make for ourselves or family or business that really kid that philanthropy can be a really powerful tool to help people uncover the answers to those questions. Thank you.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And then, and what you just said, you know, we, I think the three of us at one time or another, have had conversations, just like this, you know, the title of today's

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know episode is how family philanthropy can strengthen your family and your family business.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And one of the things that I have found through the years of working with family owned businesses is that when they have

 

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Michael Palumbos: A core purpose that's greater than profit. Why do they exist. What difference do they want to make in the world inside their business when they're thinking about those things.

 

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Michael Palumbos: They outperform their non family owned or none. You know purpose driven competitors always or, you know, more, more often than not, I would say.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And so I think that what you hit on Bruce is the fact that having that, what do we want, what are we trying to accomplish for the world. And what are we trying to accomplish for ourselves, the really powerful things. What is it, Simon cynics says start with why right

 

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Michael Palumbos: So, um, we talked about, you know, what is effective philanthropy and why does it matter to you know somebody's family. Why does it matter to her business, Bruce. Why don't you kick off and just, you know, talk about what is you know your version of what is effective philanthropy even mean

 

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Michael Palumbos: And then we'll dig into the rest

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Well obviously we could spend a day, a week, maybe even a month on what is effective philanthropy, but

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: One thing I'll just add is that I write, I write a column. I've been writing a column for 10 years that's nationally syndicated called on philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And one of the topics that I frequently visit in that column is what is effective. What makes a difference. And for those who are listening or watching or hearing this, all of those columns are on my website but but I have a number of columns on what is effective philanthropy and

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: I'll highlight just a couple of the elements of what I think are important.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: First is to look through those two lenses right answer those two questions right first is what difference do you want to make in the world, but equally important is what difference. We want to make for ourselves. And that process itself is a very important and

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And meaningful process for families and family businesses to go through

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The second is, is I think you have to create a safe zone for these conversations, you have to set a new table families have a dinner table and

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Mom and Dad sitting there places and the kids sitting there places and there's certain ways that families relate to each other parents to kids to grandkids.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And I believe that you have to create a new table for philanthropy where everybody gets to sit as equals. We have different ground rules where you have different ways of communicating so that the generations.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Among themselves and between themselves have an opportunity to truly effectively communicate and I've written whole columns on just how to create a safe zone for family philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Third, I think you need to go deep not wide. I think it's important to try to reject peanut butter giving

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Will you take your gifts and you spread a little bit along as wide an area as you can to cover the surface of all the wonderful charities that you'd like to help

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: But rather to focus your philanthropy on on a few causes on a few things that your family or business can really leverage your resources and make a difference in

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Fourth, is I believe in the importance of the United Nations sustainable development goals, the SD G's and they can be a roadmap for philanthropy to help you focus and to help guide your work to make sure that you're headed in the right direction to make the difference. You want to make

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: A couple more really quickly are

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Look at your philanthropic capital holistically. Right. So if you have a family foundation or a donor advised fund or corporate or business foundation

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Take 100% of those assets and deploy those towards your mission. The 5% that you give away in grants and the 95% that you invest for growth also invested in a way that advances and doesn't contradict your mission.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So view your, your, your philanthropic capital, capital, which is already off your balance sheet because it's already been contributed to a 501 C three

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Right view that as a holistic entity of money to try to achieve your mission and to make the difference. You want to make in the world.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And. And then finally, is view your philanthropy with with nonprofits as a partnership, as any good partnership good communication fair balance of power.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Listening learning talking about failures, learning from failures, learning from successes, just like any partnership, rather than the

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Traditional power dynamic between the grant or who has all the money and all the power and the grantee who has to do what they say. So I'm really

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: urge our clients to really try to level that that that that table between grant or and grantee and view it as a partnership. So those are just a few quick

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Ideas that I have about how to be an effective philanthropist.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Thank you. So Deborah, I guess. Let's go with first, anything to add to that, or any comments about that. That was a wonderful gross.

 

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Michael Palumbos: But I think more importantly, if you could like, you know, why does it matter. Why does effective philanthropy matter and you know and and to the family or to somebody business, you know, how does it make a difference.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: I'm

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Such a good question, Michael and I think just to

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Just to reinforce what Bruce has said, I think he's really made some good points on what effective philanthropy is and I think what it comes down to is, it's different for every family.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And, you know, and when I was on the other side of things, you know, there was kind of a joke that it was like if you know one family foundation, you know, one family foundation, because every family is different and what they care about in the world.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Is different. And so it's, it is really about each family making their own strategy to make that impact. And I think there's something that happens in really examining

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, taking these two pieces that Bruce's talking about and examining

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Their outward. You know the impact they want to make in the world, and then examining that inner impact that they want to make in their family and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You take those two pieces and it becomes very powerful and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: It matters because it can make your family better and it can make the world better. And I'm

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And I think it's just you know I love what versus saying about that you're coming to a different table. It's very true when you're when you're engaging in philanthropy. Everybody needs to come as equals, and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Engage in listening in a way that they probably haven't been to really understand what's happening at the different generations and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And I think what you'll see is that the younger rising generations are very much influenced by their parents and their grandparents, in terms of their giving their interests, however, are going to diverged in some respects.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And, um,

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And so that's where that you know the meeting of the minds comes of

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Listening to each other and understanding why something matters, you know, to one generation or one person versus another generation, it's just, it's a very powerful process and when it's done successfully the impact can be huge.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Great that you both of us picked up on that, you know, setting a different table.

 

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Michael Palumbos: As a nice you know way of looking at things I would share with you. You know, I have found in working with family businesses.

 

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Michael Palumbos: That, that, that's a nice analogy that I might, you know, borrow from time to time family businesses are very used to doing things their way and sometimes

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know, I know, walking into a family business, it's you know my way or the highway happens, an awful lot of times it's, you know, the getting that thinking differently, where non family members can have a seat at that table and a powerful impactful seat at that table, as you know,

 

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Michael Palumbos: When that starts to happen, great things happen for a lot of families. And I would say that, you know,

 

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Michael Palumbos: In your analogy, Bruce. It's like there's a lot of power in the rising generation and the younger generations and the older generations. And if you just, you know, focus too too harshly. I would think that

 

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Michael Palumbos: You lose the value. And I think that's where we're going next is you know the benefits of how giving can benefit you know family businesses as well as the causes you support.

 

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Michael Palumbos: I think that if done properly with you know that effective philanthropy, that makes a big difference. Correct.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Um, it does. I want to mention just one more thing about the philanthropic table. Sure. Most, most of our dinner tables are rectangular

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Or square right but usually a lot of times they're rectangular right and and the oftentimes the wealth creator be at mom or dad sits at one particular and and then the other.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Family members sit in their designated places. What I like about a philanthropy table and I try, sometimes even to physically have one is to make it round.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Is it least figuratively. If not, actually, is to create a roundtable where there is no head of the table where everybody occupies an equal seat.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And where the voices of the different generations can be heard as equals, rather than one being more powerful than the other. I literally have a client.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Who I am allowed to sit next to it family meetings and he wears cowboy boots, because I am permitted to kick him under the table.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: When he starts to act like the dad and and the commander in chief of the family like he does in his business. And so we create roundtables where people can sit

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Hopefully more as equals than they often do at the dinner table which they they had a dinner soon as they were growing up, so the answer.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The answer that I would give to your question about how how how giving can benefit a family business as well as causes is in many families family foundation can be the first place where the rising generation can can learn how to read a balance sheet.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Can work with financial advisors and understand the investments of their philanthropic assets they can learn how to how to assume leadership.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: How to take leadership and responsibility for four different aspects of the philanthropic plan. The cool thing about philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Is that once that money has been given away to a family foundation or a donor advised fund or a business Foundation, it no longer is owned by the family.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It's owned by the public gets a 501 c three. So you have this pool of money that you can learn with and grow with and do things with. It's not even your money.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Right, it's, it's the public's money. It's there for the public good. So you can free yourself have some of the control and power and outcome, the things that are normally attached

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: To the money that you still on because it's really there for the public good and it's a great, I call it a petri dish.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Because it's a place where young people, rising generations can learn to experiment with money in a way that it's not so easy to experiment with the family's money.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Because the family's money pays for college education and vacations and all the things that families want to use their money for. But once it's been committed to philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It's no longer the family's money. And so it's a perfect learning opportunity for young people to learn about communication about trust, about about finances about impact about power and ultimately about leadership.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Love it. Deborah. I know that you share the same you know feelings as Bruce does about the the benefits that you know a family and family business in the causes could

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know benefit from that any examples of, you know, families that you've worked with, or people that you've worked with where you've seen that an action.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: I mean sure, um,

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, I think I'm

 

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Deborah Goldstein: One of my favorite examples and this will this will take from a very young rising generation.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: They were somewhere between elementary school age and just starting college and um

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And and for me, you can you can start you know that young. I think it's great. The younger you start the better.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And

 

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Deborah Goldstein: So they were they were Gen three. They were the grandparents were the the

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Wealth generators and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: What I saw was generations coming together. You know, I think what we find in these

 

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Deborah Goldstein: In these families is that families are distributed around the country now around the world, even. And so one. This is an opportunity to bring together family that may not be

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Engaged on a regular basis. So that's one. You know, one beautiful benefit of this and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And then where I always like to start is with values. And so when I started having the conversation with these young minds about values you really found that while there were some differences there was a thread of probably two or three values that

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You could see, had been passed down

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And when you find that commonality. That's the place where you can build

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And I just think, you know, families that engaged in this are really preparing their the rising generations and providing them all these, you know, the skills that Bruce is talking about.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: In ways that really help guide them and prepare them to then step up into more

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And greater leadership responsibilities. So for this family, they were at the time that I was working with them. They were just having their first member rising from I'm

 

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Deborah Goldstein: From their sort of junior board, as they called it to, you know, the actual decision making and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, he came on ready to go, because he had had that preparation. Now, they were dealing with a much smaller pot of money than than many other families, maybe, but still the the practice and the implementation of these ideas and processes is there. And, um,

 

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Deborah Goldstein: I just, you know, I found a very engaged.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Family and the can, you know, it was very empowering to see. I think the youngest at the time was maybe in second grade and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Let me tell you he was rare and get out there and change the world. So you know that comes from this whole process.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Love it. Thank you. When we so that kind of leads into, you know,

 

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Michael Palumbos: Top down philanthropy and top down succession planning.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Are often limited. If not, you know, unsustainable. Why don't I endeavor where I'm going to stick with you for a second, give you, you know, do you want to talk about, you know, what is top down philanthropy even mean top down succession planning and you know why it's not sustainable.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Sure. Well, in my mind, the top down, is that it's coming from the wealth generators that they're saying this is the way it's to be

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, like you said, it's my way or the highway. This is the way we do it in our family.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: This is the way we've always done it, you know, sort of those phrases that you hear and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know and what we were saying earlier, I mean, this is where that round philanthropic table really comes

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Comes to the forefront and and as a place where you have the equal voices. And as I said, you're going to find that

 

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Deborah Goldstein: While there may be shared values between the

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Between the generations, you may see those expressed in the world differently in terms of how they want to make an impact in terms of the interests, you know, I'm

 

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Deborah Goldstein: older generations were really into building the institutions in our world, creating you know the art museums and the

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know the libraries and the great institutions that we have and those need to be maintained and we have other things, other places that we want to make an impact.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: What we're seeing in the rising generation is they're very interested in advocacy and they're very interested in environment. So their expression of the family's values and how that can make a difference in the world and impact people is going to be different. And, um,

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And so in that case takedown does not work because you're going to have a difference of opinion. So that's where you bring in everybody's that's where the active listening really takes places. How can we still

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Move forward our own values in the world and make an impact and yet do it in a way that honors

 

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Deborah Goldstein: The generations that artists to come

 

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Michael Palumbos: Great, thank you. Bruce, you would you like to add to the conversation on top down philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Sure you know top town top down philanthropy reminds me of those School of Management in business called command and control.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: commanding control is a is a is a very effective management tool that works for a while.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It works. It works in the short term command and control gets things done the way you want it that right now. It's my way or the highway.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And it works in the in the in the short term but command and control has been proven over decades of analysis, not to be an effective management style in business or families or philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: unalterably ultimately a collaborative form of leadership emerges, which, in which, whether it's a

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Family philanthropic table or a business philanthropic table it's round and command and control is the is outdated and no longer viewed as an effective leadership style in business. And that's true.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: In philanthropy and what I what I see in

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Particularly in the multi generational families that we work with, if it's if it's dictated from above the young folks the rising generations will

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Will play along will will participate, out of respect out of honoring the older generation out of admiring the older generation and out of respect for the older generation, but they won't buy it.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It won't be their journey. It'll be Dead's journey or moms journey or grandma's journey or grandpas journey but it won't be their journey.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So as they emerge into young adulthood and adulthood and have their own priorities in our own families and our own careers, whether it's in the family business or not.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: They'll gravitate toward the things that they're interested in. So if the older generation is saying, No, you're going to do what we're interested in. You're only going to give to opera.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And you know the 20 year old isn't in the opera sure they'll do it out of respect, but they won't buy it.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And it won't last long. And eventually, they'll drift away from that philanthropic table because it's not their table.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The beauty of a philanthropic table is that it can really be a place where everybody gets to sit

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Where everybody gets to have a place at the table and feel though that that by and look through their own generational lens and find passion and engagement around the things that they collectively care about

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And so it's it's it's a it's it's a good analogy from business command and control will work for a while but it won't work for the long term. And the goal of most family philanthropy and business philanthropy is to last over time and not just not just the last for right now.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Love it. Yeah, it's funny way, as you say that I have two images, two things that come to my head. One is

 

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Michael Palumbos: We, we have a set of ground rules when we meet with one family business. And one of the ground rules is G to wait for G three to answer.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And your because we're trying to grow the succession plan we're trying to mentor and if you're always jumping in and answering for them.

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know, it doesn't help. And I think the same thing comes from philanthropy, if its top down, you're not getting

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know what you're looking for out of it, if that's what you're trying to do. And I think that goes back to what you said versus, you know, be be specific in what you're trying to accomplish.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Maybe that's not what it not it.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Well I don't let me just stay in my family. I have four sons

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And they range from age 33 to 12

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The, the 33 year old looks at the world through a completely different lens similar values, but a different lens than I do. And the 12 year old looks at the world through a completely different lens than his 33 year old brother, right, because each generation of

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: People have their own life experiences have their own lens have their own opportunity to view the world differently. And we all have so much to learn from each other.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And the older generation from the younger is and the younger is from for the odors that the opportunity to do so in philanthropy. When again it's outwardly focused

 

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Michael Palumbos: Right.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: You prints in the world. It's no longer your own money. It belongs to the public. It's there for the public good. It's rich if it's done right.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Perfect. Have either of you.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Heard of Liz Wiseman, she wrote the book multipliers.

 

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Michael Palumbos: I think that if you haven't it's I just was in a seminar with Liz and she talks about, you know, as leaders being either multipliers or diminishes.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And and right in the middle of being a multiplier or diminish your is where many, many people sit where they're an accidental diminish. Sure.

 

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Michael Palumbos: They have all the best intentions, they're really trying really hard to make all these things happen properly. But, you know, these little things that come up, like, you know,

 

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Michael Palumbos: The idea fountain was one of them. And I use that one because I'm an idea fountain. I have an idea. A minute and it drives my team absolutely crazy. They can't keep up with that, but I could see the same kinds of

 

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Michael Palumbos: Things happening inside of philanthropy, or inside of you know in not just in business.

 

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Michael Palumbos: That somebody could be an accidental diminish your and that you know working on those things to help the next generation flourish and become all the things that they can be would be really helpful. Just a side note for you that

 

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Michael Palumbos: You might find interesting. Um, when we talk about, you know, the rising generation and family philanthropy.

 

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Michael Palumbos: What, what would you say are some of the skills that the rising generation can learn and why are they learning those skills to me if you have an example of you know where those skills are transferable.

 

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Michael Palumbos: That would be wonderful and Bruce, why don't you kick us off on the skill sets that you know are learned in the through family philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Others, there's a very long list of skills that philanthropy can teach

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: A few of the top ones are are

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Are how to behave in groups right we you mentioned, Michael. The idea of setting ground rules.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: We do that with every family is we said we set ground rules for this new table right for the philanthropic table. How are we going to treat each other.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: How are we going to learn from each other. How are we going to disagree. How are we going to support each other. How are we going to thank each other.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And and there are many ground rules that families establish that then

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Apply in other settings right in, whether it's in the family business, or even when they move over to the dinner table or another family gatherings, who have been one of my favorite ground rules that some families put in is no i walls.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Right. You're not allowed to roll your eye.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: When your father or your brother or your mother says what you know they're going to say, and then you roll their eyes and then you're basically saying, I don't know, I might even listening to. It's a very dismissive.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Very dis dis disrespectful, very common reaction. I actually have that rule with my wife, we have a know I roll rule. Both of us are great. I wrote

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It, but if we, I will even in a marriage, right, let alone in a family philanthropic table or a business setting, you're basically saying to the other person what you just said. Doesn't matter.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So we start with a set of ground rules for behavior that then can be applied to other settings that are that help help teach listening help teach other important skills.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Philanthropy can can help the rising generation. Learn how to listen and how to disagree right disagreement is productive disagreement is exciting this disagreement causes growth.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: But how you disagree is is is is important and so philanthropy, the philanthropic table can be a place where you can learn how to disagree, but still move forward as opposed to get stuck.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The philanthropy table can be a place where you can learn the skills of effective communication.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: You can learn how to trust other people to do their jobs and then learn how to say thank you.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And how to acknowledge you know something that it's really hard for some people to do is to acknowledge the

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Hard work that other people's you're doing other people were doing. Think how valuable that is in a business setting right to be able to acknowledge the success and the hard work of your

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Table mates, whether it's a business table or philanthropy table and ultimately philanthropy is a place to learn leadership.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And all of these skills that we're talking about the Deborah has mentioned that you have mentioned that I have mentioned.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: All of these are about leadership. How do you be a good leader, you have to be an effective communicator. You have to learn how to listen.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: You have to learn how to collaborate. You have to learn how to disagree. Right. You have to learn how to acknowledge these are all

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Leadership skills that can be taken from the philanthropic table and all the family philanthropy or business philanthropy and apply it to a business setting.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So I'm a great believer in the use of philanthropy to build leadership among the rising generation build better communication among the generations in a family, which ultimately help the family help the business.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And at the end of the day, helps the world because at the end of the day we're putting money out the door to some very worthy or needy cause that that that is dependent upon philanthropy to do. It's great work.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Great, thank you. I

 

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Michael Palumbos: I'm thinking of an example that is we're not. I have a family where we're working on the foundation right now and it is 95% top down and trying to figure out how to maneuver that to not be top down because

 

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Michael Palumbos: They have a one grandchild. That's the only grandchild that they're going to have, and they are planning on having multi multi millions in that, you know, the family.

 

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Michael Palumbos: It's a family foundation and this one grandchild is expected to run it. She's 11

 

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Michael Palumbos: You have no idea whether she's going to have an interest or not have an interest or whether you know what her life is going to look like.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And they they involve her, but it's all grandma and grandpa tell her what to do and that's this is really helpful for me just, I'm trying to think about how do I frame that going forward in our July Family Foundation meeting. So thank you. Appreciate that.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Deborah, when we talk about, you know, the skill sets and

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know what you see people you know what their what these rising generations are learning, you talked about an example earlier with the family that you're, you know, serving where you had young, young kids in there.

 

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Michael Palumbos: What other things did you, you know, see coming from, you know what, what else are they learning. What are the other skill sets, they're coming out of there.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Well, you know, I'm through started started us off with a great list. And I would just add a few things I think also

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, critical thinking skills are in play here, you're really, you're needing to analyze things you're needing to do evaluation, you're needing to

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, make decisions like Bruce said, I think, also, this is a great place to learn to take risks to, you know, a lot of philanthropy is about playing it safe and yet there's a real opportunity here to take some risks and see if, maybe, maybe it's going to pay off. Maybe there's an impact.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: beyond your wildest dreams and vision for what you can do, because you really invest in something that's a different approach that's not being taken out there. So I think that's a great you know skill to work on. And then, especially

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Especially for these younger kids, since you brought them up, Michael, you know, empathy.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Is really at play here and being able to put yourself in somebody else's shoes and feel like

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know what it might feel like for that person in the world. And I think that's a really important skill.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: To build for especially for younger kids because that will only serve them as they they go about

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Their lives and all of these all of these together help each of these individuals as part of a family create their own philanthropic identity and how they want to show up in the world. And I think that's

 

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Deborah Goldstein: That's just something so powerful for these especially especially younger

 

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Deborah Goldstein: kids to be able to feel like they have a voice in this and to learn to speak up for themselves to learn to be able

 

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Deborah Goldstein: To like Bruce said effective communication, but to really get your, you know, get your point across. Get your view across in a way that's

 

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Deborah Goldstein: You know, that's going to be

 

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Deborah Goldstein: That's going to be heard.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Great One

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: I want to, I never made a really a number of really great points there, but the one that I really love was the idea of taking risks.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: First of all, you can take risks with this money because again it's not your money. Right. And if it and if you take a risk and it doesn't succeed. It doesn't affect anything in your life other than

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The amount of philanthropic capital, you may be able to give away, but it doesn't affect your security your safety or your future. Um, I view philanthropy, as the ultimate risk capital.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Because when you look at the sources of capital. There's the private sector and they they invest for financial return and they can they can take some risks but ultimately they're responsible to their shareholders.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Government has to solve a bunch of social problems and they can take some risks but ultimately they're accountable to their

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Electric to their to the citizens to the voters philanthropy for good and for bad isn't accountable to anybody.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So we encourage clients to take some percentage of their philanthropic capital and and take some moonshots right I'm working. I'm working with a family.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: That that gives to all kinds of organizations, BUT THEY TAKE SOME OF THEIR MONEY AND THEY SUPPORT CUTTING EDGE experimental medical research. The chances are that that research will not produce

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: A cure or a result that will save lives. But unless that research is done. It'll never it'll never happen. So they take a percentage of their of their capital and they take moonshots right because if it fails, it doesn't affect them.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And if it succeeds. It is the scale of its impact is far beyond the investment so

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The idea of using philanthropic capital to take risks is something that really resonates with me to ever because I think it's a chance

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: To do something which with this money that is no longer on your balance sheet to try to try some new approaches.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Some different approaches to solve traditional and intractable problems and it's very exciting vehicle or petri dish. Again, from which to do that. So thanks for bringing that up. You're welcome.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And I want to hit on the empathy one

 

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Michael Palumbos: Because in this world of social media.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And the lack of social interaction, face to face.

 

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Michael Palumbos: I think empathy is lacking in some of the rising generation, just from my experience.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And I think that this is that is such a great example. I think, you know, one of the places. Our kids learned empathy was, you know, doing the work they they chose to work. We have, we worked in a soup kitchen.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Locally, and that was a, you know, all the kids at the table. We had, you know, philanthropy cards and the different you know values and different things you could do with philanthropy and, you know, we

 

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Michael Palumbos: Each chose three different cards and then we put them in the middle and we work together to come out with what we were going to you know what we were going to work on.

 

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Michael Palumbos: And that was, that was a fun thing but it ended up being, you know, a soup kitchen and the kids got to see all kinds of different you know lifestyles that were a lot different than what they were used to living. So I think empathy is a really big, powerful tool inside of there.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And and and and to underscore that I mean these are usually

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: We're talking about families who have extra, extra money right they have wealth. Right, so that they can afford even to consider philanthropy. So by definition, we're talking about

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Children who are being raised in in tremendously privileged environments. And so to use philanthropy as a place to see how the world lives.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: How, most of the world lives and to learn how much of a struggle. It is even to put food on the on the table or or to have a shelter that protects you from the elements.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It's a great opportunity for that that to happen. I'm working with one family where it's actually the younger generation that is spread has expressed concern for the elderly and the fact that we tend to not do a good job in our society to care for the elderly and so we're now funding.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: A lot of different classes to help the elderly, but it didn't come from mom and dad. It came from the kids. And so it's a great opportunity for all of that to blend in a marvelous mix of values and learning and passion.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: That that we really believe in, so

 

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Michael Palumbos: So we talked about a bunch of the different skill sets, you know that the rising generation are going to

 

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Michael Palumbos: Learn what either of you mind sharing some examples of where you saw or that you know what were the tools. What were the things that you

 

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Michael Palumbos: exercises that you helped put into place so that you could, you know, generate some of those things. Something you know live you know with with a family that worked.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: So I'll jump in here. So one of the. This actually isn't isn't a family example but it's an exercise that I would do with a family and it's something that's coming to my mind is

 

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Deborah Goldstein: One time I did a presentation actually the Girl Scout troop and was introducing them to the, the idea of philanthropy and one of the exercises I do is I have a bunch of photos I use it's from a group Bruce and I have both been trained by

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And they have these picture cards that they call legacy cards. And the idea is, you know, sometimes a picture's worth 1000 words and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And it can really sort of

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Set off something visceral, you know, when you see a picture. So I had the, the girls go through the pictures and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Identify some that might express something that they want to see happen in the world and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And everybody in the group was, you know, able to find something that really spoke to helping other people

 

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Deborah Goldstein: One girl in particular, though, had a little, a little trouble with this and she just found there was like a picture of a mansion. And that's what she picked out and she couldn't she couldn't express. You know what it was, but she wanted that mansion and um

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And so I walked her through, you know, well that's that's a really nice house, you know, and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: If you want a house. Don't you think there are others who want a house. Who wants shelter over their heads. So I kind of helped her to see that. Well, she may already have shelter and her vision for herself is a bigger grander shelter.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: She also needed to realize there are people who walk around this world that don't have a home, they don't have a shelter and they need that. And so that was a way to sort of take on

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And and sort of help her reframe her thinking

 

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Deborah Goldstein: To help her realize that there is a there's a true need in this world for for shelter for people. And so that's just an example of one one exercise that I do with pretty much everybody.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Is, is to use these pictures to help verbalize

 

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Deborah Goldstein: The legacy and and what individuals and families want to see.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Created in this world.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Right.

 

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Thank you.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Bruce in terms of many families that you've worked with and you watched the rising generation or the next generation start to grow and change. What were you know we talked about leadership before

 

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Michael Palumbos: Anything come to your mind in terms of a strong example of how that worked.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Um, I have I have many, but our

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Focus.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: On one family. One of the things that we do with families, as I said earlier, we in order to set this philanthropic table is we set these ground rules about how we're going to treat each other right

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The other thing is we do is we is we define the purpose. What is the purpose for this.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: joint effort. Why are we doing this. What, why are we taking all of our time and all of this money and coming together around a philanthropic table.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And I have seen families where the number one purpose of their family philanthropic endeavor is to keep the family working together over generations race to help the family thrive over time.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And over distance and over challenges that happen. So I'm working with one family right now where one branch of the family, a family.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Is deeply religious and very conservative, the other branch of the family is the opposite. They're not religious, and they're very liberal

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So under normal circumstances, they really wouldn't have a lot to talk about. Because they didn't feel like they had a lot in common.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: But they formed a family foundation started by the brother and sister g one and then there's the G to and then there's now a rising G three

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Have little ones, but come and they decided that their first purpose of this whole effort is for the family to learn to work together for the cousins to get to know each other.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: For the siblings to get along and to begin to make decisions together as future stewards of the families well

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And their secondary purpose was to make a difference in the world. But their primary purpose was to is to keep the family together. That's that question. What difference do we want to make for ourselves.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Is there difference was they wanted to help the family tribe over the generations. So when we make decisions when we work when we sit at that philanthropic table.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The first priority is how do we do this in a way that helps this family blend its values as opposed to be divided by its values and work together.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And a classic example came up is that they wanted to fund some medical research. And there was a particular disease that the family is concerned about. And so they wanted to fund the medicine, medical research, but they discovered that the researchers were using stem cells.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: From aborted fetuses well that offended the

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The, the religious side of the family. And so we work together as a family to find a way to do that research without doing that.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Because the purpose wasn't to do the research that was the secondary purpose. The first purpose was to get the family to work together.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And to keep the family going together so we solve the problem by being respectful of the family differences with the eye toward that family purpose.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Of helping the family thrive over generations and the medical research was funded, but it was funded in a way that didn't offend one part of the family's deeply held religious beliefs, so

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: I mean, that's just one of many examples that I could give of where this philanthropic table setting a purpose, establishing ground rules and ultimately having a shared mission can be a place for great healing great growth and great opportunity for families. Yeah.

 

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Michael Palumbos: I would I would throw in there. You know, we talked about this, and I don't know if it was Denver that said this, Bruce. But there was a family that didn't have it wasn't like

 

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Michael Palumbos: multimillion dollar you know Family Foundation, but

 

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Michael Palumbos: even doing this with small amounts of money. It doesn't take an awful lot of money to make this work. Right. You know it's you can teach you know in some a child that's five years old, you can have these conversations with and have an impact. Correct.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Yes, absolutely. And it's, it's

 

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Deborah Goldstein: It's the practice. I mean, all of these skills that we've been talking about can be learned, even when you're dealing with a small pot of money and and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And I think, in fact,

 

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Deborah Goldstein: THAT WAS YOUR, YOU'VE reminded me that that wasn't a family that I was talking about. And I think while I was working with them. The

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Younger generation actually proposed to the wealth generators to increase their pot of money that they would get to distribute

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And they, you know, came up with their carefully crafted arguments of why that should happen and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And it was you know that there's just such passion around it. So the process can be you know maybe simplified to some degree.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: But it can be learned. You know, if you're giving away $100 or if you're giving away 100 million dollars.

 

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Michael Palumbos: It's that taking the time to be purposeful with it. Isn't that

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Right, exactly right. If you can have a philanthropic table with very with very little amounts of money because all of this work and all of this journey isn't dependent upon them on the amount of money that you have to give away and

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: One thought is that the word philanthropy.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: From which philanthropist is obviously derived means philo's is it comes from the Greek term philo's enterprise and Philo Santos is love of humanity, doesn't mean you have to be Bill and Melinda Gates to love humanity.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Although they clearly do but but the you know this, not about how much, but it's the process and the intentionality. And the purpose purposeful approach.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Toward answering those two questions that we talked about that I think are the driver, not the amount of money that you have to give away.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And I would also add that

 

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Deborah Goldstein: That this is an opportunity. I mean, Michael, you brought up this example of the soup kitchen and I think I've seen multiple families that have done this, that this is also an opportunity, not just sit at the table and have the conversation. But to get out there and

 

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Deborah Goldstein: And do

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Be philanthropic by giving their time and you know volunteering or

 

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Deborah Goldstein: giving their ties. You know, you know, being advocates for whatever cause that the family has taken on and really spreading the message of how important that causes. So there's other ways besides the money that all play into this

 

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Michael Palumbos: When the three of us that you know to do our show prep, sort of, you know, speak. We talked about, you know, the, the things that drive the wedge typically between generations, when we're passing the family businesses.

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know, it's that lack of communication, the lack of, you know, different values, lack of trust that kind of develop

 

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Michael Palumbos: As you move from generation to generation three and generation for specifically

 

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Michael Palumbos: You know, and I think we've hit on a bunch of times. But I think it's a great place to kind of wrap up today is, you know, how does using family philanthropy, you know, help to take the focus and change that dynamic

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Um, I think the secret of family philanthropy and I'm happy to share it with who's ever listening or watching is that

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: When you when you're sitting at a philanthropic table. You're looking out the window. You're looking outside and you're saying to yourself, How do we want to make a difference out there.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: And so the focus isn't so much on the family. It's on. How does the family come together to have an impact out there. And in so doing it.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: It takes some of the pressure off and enables the generations to work among themselves in between themselves in ways that they might

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Find more challenging when they're focused on their own money and their own problems and their own challenges.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: So that's one of the things that it's one of the secrets of family philanthropy is that you're looking out the window, trying to solve.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: The world's problems, but at the same time you're building systems of communication and trust and acknowledgement and learning that enable you to work better together as a family, not only at the philanthropic table but at all the other tables that would you say

 

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Michael Palumbos: And there's and there's a connection point that's common because it's easy to connect about others, and to do things for others. Sometimes than it is to do things for ourselves.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Absolutely, yeah.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: That's true in any film.

 

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Michael Palumbos: There. Right.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Um,

 

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Michael Palumbos: What I'd like to do is take a minute each of you. How can people contact you in, you know, if you're a family of means and need a coach. I am a big firm believer that

 

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Michael Palumbos: Coaching is the answer to these things. There's just a lot of thought that both Bruce and Deborah have brought to the table in these areas that some of us just haven't had the time

 

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Michael Palumbos: To think about. And so as coaches, they can bring a lot to the table if people wanted to reach you, how do they reach you, you know,

 

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Michael Palumbos: Entered, you know, how do we reach out to you.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: I'm I'm easy to find. I met enlightened philanthropy. If you can spell all of that.com or you can email me at Debra.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: De be zero RA H at enlightened philanthropy com

 

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Michael Palumbos: Thank you. Deborah Yes.

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Bruce and I have a website called dub, dub boschi group.com Brewster boschi is de Bo sky group.com and on that website you'll, you'll have a chance to see all of all of my columns that I've written

 

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Bruce DeBoskey: Over 10 years about all of these questions and all of these issues that we've talked about. So I think the best place is www that device key group com or you can email me at Bruce at device key group com easy to find. As long as you can spell the name the

 

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Michael Palumbos: I want to say thank you both for joining me today on the family biz show you've given me given us a lot to think about and as you both inside this is just the tip of the iceberg. So take this and you know utilize this as a springboard into other things.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Again, thank you both for joining us. My name is Michael Columbus and this has been the family biz show. Stay tuned. When next week we'll pick up on another topic of to have you join us again. Thank you, everybody.

 

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Deborah Goldstein: Thanks Michael. Thank you, Michael.

 

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Michael Palumbos: Take care. Thank you.

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