Mack International President Invited to Speak at the 4th Annual Conference for Banyan Wisdom of Shanghai in NYC April 28, 2016.

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Linda C. Mack of Chicago-based Mack International recently participated in the North American Private Banking and Family Office Summit organized by Banyan Wisdom of Shanghai, China. Linda Mack was a panelist/moderator for two of the sessions during the event which focused on exploring topics related to key aspects of family wealth, succession and creating a legacy.

Engaging the next generation poses unique challenges in China...

Linda C. Mack, founder and president of Mack International, LLC, the premier retained executive search and family office strategic management/human capital consulting firm, was invited to be a panelist for the 4th annual summit organized by the Banyan Wisdom based in Shanghai, China. The event took place on April 28, 2016 and was held at the Marriott East Side in New York City. Recognized as one of China’s most professional and reliable institutes promoting best practices, Banyan provides Chinese family enterprises and financial practitioners with educational services to further enhance their family businesses and offices.

This Private Banking and Family Office Summit was attended by over 35 Chinese families. Panelists included senior advisors, authors, and principals from a wide variety of specialties related to issues affecting Family Office performance. Linda Mack contributed on two of the key formal panel sessions. She also provided opening remarks prior to the start of each session. “It was a privilege to be asked to introduce my colleagues who are some of the most well respected thought leaders in the industry.”

“Mapping a Path into the Family Enterprise for the Next Generation” was one of the panels where Linda was joined by Thomasina Williams, Consultant with Relative-Solutions and Charlotte Beyer, Principal of Quest Foundation and founder of the Institute for Private Investors. Charlotte is also the author of ‘Wealth Management Unwrapped.’ “The lessons learned in Charlotte’s book are critically important for all generations of families,” said Linda. Ms. Beyer described how a family member of any generation can become an effective “CEO of My Wealth, Inc.” --a term coined by Ms. Beyer--and how to avoid common investment mistakes by knowing the key questions to ask of advisors before they invest any money. Of great interest to the audience was the conversation related to helping prepare the next generation for a smooth transition into the family enterprise. McKinsey & Company reports that more than 1 million entrepreneurs are over 55 years old in China. In 10 to 15 years, Chinese enterprises will face the peak time for inheritance--and few have a plan, or even an interested heir. “Engaging the next generation poses unique challenges in China, due to the ‘one child’ policy,” remarked Linda. “If you have only one child, what if he is not interested in the family business? Alternatively…what if “he” is a “she”?” Studies are showing that up to 65% of children whose parents own manufacturing businesses are not interested in being involved in the business. First generation entrepreneurs in China are facing a crisis in family business succession. There are real human capital constraints anticipated which will require extra effort in planning and managing for the future. If a daughter is the only potential successor, there is potential culture shock since China traditionally assumes a male will occupy business leadership positions. According to Linda, families are finding creative ways to bridge the gap. “First generation family enterprises want to keep the business in the family. In some cases, the son will take on a governance role with the father. Another alternative might be to hire a professional manager. Ultimately, the culture may have to get accustomed to more women leading the family business.”

The second panel addressed the evolution of women in leadership roles in family offices and in the wealth management industry. Linda Mack was joined by Fredda-Herz Brown, Founder of Relative-Solutions and Kirby Rosplock, author of ‘The Complete Family Office Handbook.’ “The Impact of Women in Family Wealth Management” explored current trends and future shifts in family office leadership and how women in China are changing the landscape. Linda and her fellow panelists discussed women’s relationship with wealth and the ways in which their points of view might differ from their male counterparts. An increasing number of women are assuming leadership positions in their family offices and business enterprises. Linda talked about the qualities that make women natural leaders. “In the past men were seen as having the monopoly on the skills and technical qualifications necessary to run a business. But the softer skills--the emotional quotient--that many women possess are being increasingly recognized as important for effective and successful leadership. A high EQ can lead to higher levels of collaboration...and women traditionally bring those skills to the party.” Rather than being resisted, a woman’s ability to mentor and inspire family cohesion is increasingly being seen as cause for celebration and inclusion.

The conference was a resounding success. Chinese families in attendance represented first or second generation enterprises and enjoyed sharing information and learning best practices from experienced Family Office advisors and thought leaders from the U.S. Linda’s impression was it gave everyone a wonderful opportunity to learn from each other. “There was great mutual learning and deeper understanding with regard to similarities and differences we all experience.”

About Mack International LLC
Mack International is the premier, boutique retained executive search and strategic management/human capital consulting firm serving national and international clients in the family office, family business enterprise and the wealth management industries on national and international basis. Founded in 2002, the firm has achieved an exceptional track record of success as evidenced by its unmatched industry expertise, in-depth market knowledge and unparalleled track record of success. Founder and President, Linda C. Mack has established proprietary methodologies such as the Mack 360© and is credited for having coined the term “expert generalist” in the industry.

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