Words make all the difference. When you talk legacies or gifts in wills, tuning into the right words will give you real and lasting impact. We know that to have a legacy conversation, knowledge, tools and confidence need to be in place. So here are 5 key words that you can add to your toolbox.
Firstly, a word of warning. 5 words are not very many. But its the essence of these words that really matters. And of course there are more than 5 that can make a difference – but I think if you were pressed to pick the most important then I believe these are probably the famous 5. What are they?
1. Family – don’t mention a gift without acknowledging the family. It’s critical and people need to understand we are not competing. Family first, charity second. If they do it the other way that’s up to them, but this sequence is hardwired into peoples heads. Accept it and embrace it.
2. Small – people need to recognise that a small gift really helps. They need to know that most legacies are small and come from ordinary people. Small makes it accessible and real for them
3. Share – a share (or small percentage) is the means they can give. A small share or a share of whatever is left.
4. Everything – everything that’s important to them. Complete might work ,but a gift in your will, after you have looked after friends and family allows you to take care of everything that’s important to you. Everything is what a donor wants to feel. Everything is complete. Peace of mind.
5. Consider – the most important word. Not have you. Not will you. Not when will you (unless the conversation leads there). But simply will you consider? You want them to commit to thinking about it, so they act later. It’s respectful, appropriate and powerful. Consideration is the key ask. They will tell you when they are ready – so be patient.
So, there they are. 5 core words. Family, small, share, everything, consider. These words if delivered with sincerity and a healthy majority of listening rather than speaking, with a respectful few questions and a follow-up action can move people to consider leaving a gift from a point when they probably hadn’t even thought about it. Try it.