Legacy

Should we stop using the term “wealth creator?”

The term “wealth creator” is commonly used by wealth managers and estate planners to refer to the individual who is responsible for creating his or her family’s wealth.

By Daniel Scott

They are the “first generation” of wealth in the old adage of “shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations” – a saying used in multiple cultures to refer to the problem of wealth statistically being made in lost in three generations.

That is, there is a 70 percent chance the wealth you accumulate during your lifetime will be gone at some point during your children’s lives, and a 90 percent chance it will be gone during your grandchildren’s lives. However, the term “wealth creator” may actually be indicative of the real problem.

So-called “wealth creators” are not wealth creators, primarily. They are leaders of industry, innovators, entrepreneurs. They did not set out to simply create wealth; they set out to change the world, to improve society, solve a problem, etc. Wealth, suffice it to say, was just the biproduct.

Naturally, if you create something of extraordinary value to the world, you will receive back something of extraordinary value in return – usually in the form of money. This conforms to basic laws of physics. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. To suggest, however, that these individuals exist to merely create wealth is to undermine their real purpose. They are fueled by a greater desire and passion than money. 

Read the full story at Forbes.
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