Next year will mark the tenth and final year of our long-term strategic plan to be Top of Mind. The goal of the plan has always been to be top of mind with our clients by creating a unique holistic wealth management experience for them through our continuity of care and commitment to continuous improvement. By doing so, we open opportunities to expand our capabilities for them and others. Our plan for 2024 is again focused on taking another step forward towards this goal and built with input from every teammate in the company.

Our annual strategic planning process helps us ensure we are taking one step forward towards the achievement of our longer-term Top of Mind goal. It starts with our strategic planning questionnaire where every teammate has the opportunity to provide their thoughts on how we can serve our clients better. Candor is essential and expected as I am the only one that reviews their responses. Themes are identified from their responses, which are then brought to division leaders to build plans around with their respective teams. Those divisional plans are then brought to our advance.

Our advance is an annual three-day meeting in October involving our entire executive leadership team. The purpose of the advance is to review and discuss divisional strategic plans for the upcoming year. We call it an advance instead of a retreat because our plan is to move forward not backward. Divisional plans are scrutinized and challenged by each leader’s peers in an effort to create a cohesive organizational plan. Candor is again essential. Once an organizational plan is constructed, we review it with our board of directors and build our budget around it.

Our organizational plan for 2024 is focused on three key themes — workplace culture, scalable enhancements, and purposeful growth.

Workplace culture continues to be one of the most important reasons teammates join Greenleaf Trust and want to spend their careers here serving clients. We strive to hire talented people from diverse backgrounds and provide them with a work environment that challenges, supports, equips, and multiplies their efforts through collaboration. The result is an engaged team that genuinely cares about clients and is inspired to do great work for them. In 2024, our focus will continue to be on new talent acquisition, training, inclusivity, succession planning, and emerging leader development.

Improving how we serve clients requires scalable enhancements as we grow. We recognize that what got us to where we are today may not necessarily get us to where we want to be in the future. Significant investments will be made in technological solutions that will allow teammates to work more efficiently from an administration perspective, which will create more focused time with and for clients. We will also be redesigning our estate settlement process to reduce time and increase interaction with beneficiaries.

In order to serve from generation to generation, it’s important that we continue to grow purposefully. There are risks to growing too quickly or too slowly. Purposeful growth involves growing deeper and broader in our capabilities at a designed fiscally responsible pace. In 2024, expanding our digital media footprint, a more targeted social media presence and selective advertising will continue to help us expand brand awareness to be top of mind. We also will be building on our capabilities to serve the next generation of our current clients through tools, education, and wealth transfer services. Longer term, our growth will continue to come from satisfied clients, deliberate geographic expansion, and potential adjacent business acquisitions.

I appreciate this opportunity to share our 2024 plan. It was built for you. I am really looking forward to sharing our new long-term strategic plan with you at this time next year. Client input along with our entire team’s will be involved in its construction and it will most certainly be client centric.

I wish you and yours the happiest of holidays.