Single Family Offices and Sense of Purpose


In the first video of the Successful Families Video Series we set the stage for understanding how successful families engage and remain focused by talking to “sense of purpose.” What is the purpose of the family? The passion that created wealth and now what continues to hold them together? Our expert panelists share their insights into these questions, exploring how sense of purpose holds families together but also how they must evolve over time. We look at some of the thoughts that goes into fostering a sense of purpose including actions, behaviors and governance. Don’t forget to join the conversation! We’d love to hear your thoughts about sense of purpose within successful families either in the comments section below or via Twitter.

Video Highlights

Fredda Herz Brown, Phd

Moving through time together implies that [sense of purpose is] an evolving thing. It isn’t a static thing. It starts out four generations before and just continues. Every generation needs to rethink, what are we here for? What are we doing together?

Fredda Herz Brown, Phd / Relative Solutions

Patricia Angus

I think, like passion, purpose can mean lots of things to lots of people but within a family focusing on a commonality, as Fredda said, values and the commonality of what you all sort of striving for together.

Patricia Angus / Angus Advisory Group

Roy Kozupsky

What causes families to disintegrate? We’re not talking about one epic event. These are conditions that sort of emerge, that grow in families, that are fractures and they diminish capital; physical capital, human capital.

Roy Kozupsky / Moses & Singer

Dennis T Jaffe, PhD

There are different challenges and the family members need to discover it. A family discovers purpose. It’s not something that’s out there. They work together, they talk, they get to know each other, they learn about what’s important to each person and then they create together an entity that’s a shared sense of purpose that’s going to get people excited for the next generation.

Dennis T Jaffe, PhD / Wise Counsel Research


Don Trone

The great families have a well-defined ethos and exchange that with one another’s but the vast majority of families have never sat down and actually defined that ethos in those three areas: behavior, values and decision making.

Don Trone / 3ethos



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Patricia Angus

Angus Advisory Group

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Dennis T. Jaffe, PhD

Wise Counsel Research

About the Family Office Association Successful Families Video Series

As someone working with ultra-high net worth families, I saw first hand a “silo effect,” where families of great wealth were continuously struggling with the same problems in their single family offices as their peers. There was a reluctance to openly share knowledge, best practices and solutions for fear of compromised privacy. In 2008, I founded Family Office Association to create an exclusive and highly private community where we could harness the collective knowledge of member families to help overcome these challenges. Now, eight years later, Family Office Association has fostered one of the most prominent, beneficial, private membership groups of prosperous families in the world.

The Successful Families Video Series was the natural next step – to begin to capture the knowledge and expertise of our community of single family offices for those who aren’t able to attend our live events. We were privileged to be joined by a truly impressive group of panelists, each an expert in their field. The open panel format enabled discussions and back-and-forth that we believe created rich conversations. We hope that the #Family Office AssociationSFVS serves to spark conversations among our members and the SFO community at large.

Read more about the Successful Families Video Project here. 

About the Family Office Association

At Family Office Association we are committed to creating value for each family we serve; value that enhances wealth, strengthens legacy, and unites multiple generations across business, investment, and shared interests and passions. Family Office Association has the resources to solve families’ most trying challenges and help achieve collective goals: to invest intelligently, give strategically, and learn exponentially. We have recently expanded the scope of our community by offering more of our resources online. Learn more about digital membership here. 

Share this Video

There truly is power in community. Share this video with your community. What do you think the importance of a sense of purpose is?  Join the discussion on Twitter with #Family Office AssociationSFVP.