When You Know What To Do, But Remain Silent

I have worked for K for the last three years, sorting his paperwork, memorabilia, and possessions.  Every other week, twice in one week or four visits per month.  Besides his having given 40,000 golf lessons and ‘still swinging’ at age 85, we have had, by now, a long and complex and emotionally intimate relationship and am trusted by his key constituencies–senior lead attorney brother, estate planner, admin on some medical, access to banking records, the whole nine yards.  Sometimes, I even find $750 cash hidden in junk mail, so tell him, ‘don’t throw anything out, unless it’s through me!’  I know all his stuff.  98% of it anyway…

Months ago, when after he was ‘this close’ to ready to allow me, to set up online access, to his banking, which I surely get to see the results of, he decided to squelch it and said he ‘did not want to do it’.

And I used to manage $40,000,000 in capital at Morgan Stanley, yet it was not my place to offer an unsolicited opinion as to his risk or lack of risk, results or lack of results, balance or imbalance on his brokerage account, looked at thing as they came through, and never once offered a thought.  So if banking real time view privileges was out, surely not all the investments?

Yet in the course of conversation, two or three weeks ago, when the market tanked, he took a real interest in my views.  So we agreed for HIM to get online access, to his major broker, de facto, so I could see his account and be better able to look along, as distinct from month end prints……….. This is progress.

How hard it was, to establish pins, authentications, so as we got through it, first it was his broker concerned about red flags since K does NOT use the internet or email, then emails to and from his brother, notes, everyone upset or disturbed or affected.  Told them all  I cannot take this risk.  Not a relationship risk.  Not a financial risk.

I was asked to look at this.  That is all!  If I am right, I am a hero.  But if I am wrong, loose trust with everyone.  Know your place and tread lightly.  In the end, up or down seven or eight thousand dollars in a week is no joke.

Get over being so sensitive, and get over territory and help the dear man.  Yet I know why the broker was concerned.  I understand.  Yet mark my words.  Global stocks, aka the ‘synchronized global recovery’ is long in the tooth, and unmanaged portfolios will suffer when untended.

When you know exactly what to do, but cannot, and are in a group of persons, and where each one has a good opinion, and many shades of gray in confidence, trust, disclosures!  Help others.  That is my path.

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About David
David Korn Special Projects has over twenty years experience in the creation, planning, operation, delivery, and refinement of the complete life cycle of complex and demanding projects. These can involve people, results, or process. Projects can be for events, business planning, financial analysis, construction, litigation, or investment.
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