Create to Collaborate: A New Mindset For Family Office Technology
Collaboration is essential in the world of knowledge work, especially in family offices where diverse skill sets often come from various sources.
However, technology has hindered effective collaboration by promoting personal data silos and limiting interoperability. iPaladin offers a solution by creating a collaborative ecosystem that transcends existing tools, allowing wealth holders and advisers to work together seamlessly and make informed decisions based on a shared understanding of information. It addresses the challenge of improving collaboration in the digital age, recognizing that humans are naturally inclined to work together, and it aims to revolutionize the way we collaborate with technology.
Collaboration is an innate human skill; it allows us to solve complex problems, build mutual understanding, and reach common goals. And in the world of knowledge work, collaboration is a prerequisite for success.
Nowhere is this truer than in a family office environment where various skill sets are required. These skill sets may often reside within third-party organizations, they may be geographically dispersed, and the processes and tools they rely on may vary significantly. The need to be able to work together seamlessly is crucial.
But in recent years, our ability to collaborate effectively has been slowly eroded by technology that preaches the benefits of more efficient ways of working but does little to support more efficient ways of working together.
This is less a problem of technology and more a problem of design. The mindset behind the wave of technological innovation we’ve seen in recent decades has changed little since the 1980s. The most popular tools we rely on are based on a traditional database mindset - an approach that allows individuals to capture, store and organize data in personal information silos but with little support for sharing, collaboration, or transparency - a fact highlighted by the reliance that most workplaces still place on email as a sharing tool.
The problem has been exacerbated by technology companies embedding this approach into their product development cycle. Each iteration is built on the last, funneling users into a specific way of working and widening the compatibility gulf with alternative providers. While many technology firms talk about personalization, the reality is it is often only offered on their terms.
In some areas of life, this may only be a minor convenience - for example, the need to work with different file formats, manually manage version control, or transition from Zoom to Teams. But for family offices, this is a critical issue. In my recent article, A Wealth of Data, I described family wealth as nothing more than a series of data points in a vast and complex web - when these data points reside in multiple formats across multiple servers with varying access permissions, there is a problem.
I’ve previously written about families' reliance on technology tools that aren’t designed to speak to each other and on workflows that promote siloed practices rather than collaboration. Each reduces the level of control and oversight the family has over its wealth and can have real-world consequences: time and resources diverted to risk mitigation rather than value maximization, inefficient, incomplete, or flawed processes, compromised security, and sadly, on occasion, the breakdown of family relationships
The solution to the challenge lies not in overhauling existing tools but in developing new ones to enable a collaboration ecosystem. iPaladin is a platform that sits above siloed technology tools and processes to create an environment where information and knowledge can be captured, shared, and evolved. At the collaboration level, wealth holders and their advisers can work together to build workflows based on a common and accurate understanding of the available information.
This isn’t a pipedream. Unlike many other technologies, iPaladin was built with collaboration at its heart. On our platform, any data can be normalized, categorized, and then recorded, creating a single source of truth from which the family can make decisions about how their wealth is managed. As humans, we’re built to collaborate, but our technology isn’t. We’ve become too used to this as the status quo, but I’m proud to say that iPaladin is changing that.
Credit - Jill Creager - President & CEO iPaladin
2022, Brad S., MFO Founder/CEO
2022, Susan L., Principal Accounting Advisor
2021, Tebbi P., SFO Office Leader
2019, Scott W. SFO Executive
2021, James K., Partner MFO Business Leader