Perhaps a bigger risk than an interruption of income, or a physical destruction of an asset, or a lawsuit, is the risk that our heads aren’t squared on straight as we go through a planning process about our wealth. I’ve been reflecting on my role in that process and it dawns on me that we each bring our own biggest risk to the planning table – it’s us!
As I think of the cases where I worry about a family’s risk to future events, it’s rarely because I predict frequent accidents, or thefts, or injuries. Instead, I realize now that what gnaws at me is the feeling that their attitudes toward risk and making an investment in risk management is itself their biggest exposure.
With perhaps greater thought I will categorize these better, but here are some attitudes I frequently see that I think are detrimental to sound wealth risk management planning:
Apathy – It won’t happen to me
Ignorance – My contracts protect me from lawsuits / I’m already covered for that
Disclosure – If I can keep it a secret I won’t have to deal with it
Gaming – I’ll just tell ½ of the story so I can get what I want at a lower price
Inconsistent Expectations – I want high deductibles but all my claims paid / I want the best coverage and service but also the lowest price
Under-involvement – I’ll just do what you guys say I should do
Believing the Hype – The salesman told me ____
Skepticism – You don’t need to know that in order to get me what I need
3rd-party Influence – My buddy told me ___ / I saw on TV ___
Photo: Rachael McGraw, Faxafoss, Iceland