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Wealth of Wisdom

The Top 50 Questions Wealthy Families Ask


Wealth of Wisdom offers essential guidance and tools to help high net worth families successfully manage significant wealth.

By compiling the 50 most common questions wealthy families ask, this book provides a compendium of knowledge from experts around the globe and across disciplines.

The deep insights and thoughtful answers in the book will help you make more informed decisions about your financial legacy. The advice and practical tools will help you get organized, develop a strategy and take real control of your family's wealth. And the many examples, stories and case studies will show you how other families have handled the very dilemmas you may be facing today.

Managing significant family wealth is a complex affair, and successfully navigating the route involves making critical decisions. This book equips you to take positive action, be proactive and make the tough decisions to protect and grow your family's wealth.

  • Ensure your family’s financial success and legacy
  • Access insights and examples from leading experts
  • Adopt the most useful tools and strategies for wealth and family management
  • Learn how other families have successfully navigated common dilemmas

When your family's wealth is at stake, knowledge and sound advice is critical. Drawn from interactions with hundreds of wealthy individuals and their advisors, Wealth of Wisdom provides a definitive resource of practical solutions to the important questions of family and wealth from the best minds in the world.

Wealth of Wisdom Podcast view all episodes

EPISODE 41: Katherine Grady – What Is the Point of Family Enterprise Governance?

What is the point of family governance? Many a first-generation family leader has asked this question with some doubt that there is a point. Family business consultant Katherine Grady ably describes in this podcast how governance plays an essential role in the well-being of businesses and families that last for generations. In her interview with Keith Whitaker, Katherine describes the main structures of family governance–the Board and the Owner’s Council–and their roles, as well as the perhaps surprising fact that family governance may be even more important for families who have sold their operating business and are now trying to manage a foundation, family office, or investable wealth together as a family.

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EPISODE 40: Kathy Wiseman – How Do You Prepare for a Good Goodbye?

How do you prepare for a good goodbye? That is, the final goodbye, death. That is the fundamental question that Kathy Wiseman takes up in this podcast and her contribution to Wealth of Wisdom. In her conversation with co-editor Keith Whitaker, Kathy talks about the role of the study of anxiety in her work with families, and she draws several lessons from her experience about how to raise the question of death with aging family members and other relatives. Kathy also shares the wisdom that, while we all know that this topic is an important and difficult one, it can be handled by families in a way that provides for a good death for family members who pass away and for stronger relationships for those family members who remain.

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EPISODE 39: Mary Duke – Should You Have a Family Meeting?

In this episode, Tom interviews Mary Duke about family meetings. Families are very complex ‘organizations’ all on their own, and the addition of wealth brings even more complexity. Families also face many changes over time – some predictable and some unexpected – which adds tends to add stress. So, good communication is key and family meetings are a helpful way to keep members in the loop and make decisions together. Mary offers practical guidance on using family meetings effectively. What are the benefits of a family meeting? Should every family have them? What should be on the agenda? Where should they be held? Who should and shouldn’t be invited? Should you use a facilitator? What should the ground rules be?

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About the Authors

Tom McCullough

Tom McCullough is Chairman and CEO of Northwood Family Office, a leading global multifamily office based in Toronto. He has spent over 35 years in the wealth management/family office field, initially in senior executive roles with RBC Wealth Management. Tom co-founded Northwood Family Office in 2003 and it has become one of the leaders in its field.

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Keith Whitaker

Keith Whitaker is President of Wise Counsel Research. He has consulted for many years with leaders of enterprising families, helping them plan succession, develop next generation talent, and communicate around estate planning. With a background in education and philanthropy, he enables family leaders to better understand their values and goals as well as to have a positive impact on the world around them.

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