Meeting Demands of Families in Challenging Times Brings Out Best From Theia
Tom Burroughes, Group Editor of Family Wealth Report, talks to Joanna Gordon Martin, Founder and CEO of Theia Senior Solutions, about her firm’s award-winning qualities.
What sets you apart from your peers this year and why? We are honored to have been selected amongst a competitive group of peers – all of whom we admire. While the pandemic impacted every individual and firm this year, Theia Senior Solutions was particularly hard hit given the vulnerable elderly population we serve. COVID-19 forced our team to be nimble and adapt our business model not only to meet the increasing family need for care and support, but also to help families address complex issues and grave concerns. These included:
- Exacerbated symptoms of dementia with the change in routine quarantining brought;
- Families with loved ones living independently facing issues of social isolation;
- Long term care and congregate living communities shutting down to outside visits.
- Home health support seeming riskier if caregivers lived outside the home; and
Family dynamics increasingly strained.
We have always prided ourselves at Theia on being able to meet the demands of discerning families, requiring highly individualized solutions, but also sought to address the ubiquitous need and risk present for the elderly population at large. This required us to broaden our reach and expand our offerings. We leveraged our technology platform and launched The Theia Care Consult to remotely address the increased need for support and serve a broader audience. We have been humbled by the response, but also most grateful that this created an increase desire for healthy individuals to plan for themselves. Our business has experienced substantial growth with The Theia Healthcare Balance Sheet® where we have collaborated with Trusted Advisors and families alike to ensure we are protecting what it perhaps the greatest wealth of all: one’s health.
How have your colleagues contributed towards the success of your organization?
Everything we do at Theia is about collaboration and teamwork. We benefit from a staff with varied and diverse backgrounds – healthcare, finance, consulting, but also strong expertise in social work, nursing, disease management, and geriatrics- including the challenges of dementia. Every individual that makes up the Theia team is passionate about the work they do – advocating for older adults and dealing with complex family dynamics. They continue to amaze with their tireless efforts to go over and beyond on behalf of the Theia client base.
What are you going to do to stay on the front foot in a fast growing but also challenging region such as this? We are going to continue to listen to our customers, be persistent in our desire to innovate and continue to ask questions to improve.
What have been the challenges you have had to overcome to reach such a standard? One of the most difficult parts of our business is the innate human desire to but off planning for the last stage of life – despite its inevitability. Sometimes the most challenging part of our job at Theia, is telling families what they do not want to hear. In our business, there can be a fine line between “the customer is always right” and a family or individual that may be in denial or losing capacity – physically or cognitively.
We are steadfast in our desire to examine the facts, while also being exceptional listeners, understanding concerns and helping to align families around the often complex decisions that need to be addressed.
Whom do you look to for inspiration and ideas? There are so many individuals and firms that inspire us – we are lovers of learning and have benefited greatly from the wisdom of those who have worked in the Family Office space for a very long time. We are indebted to those that have taken Theia “under their wing” and see value in the work that we do. Families of significance have greater needs for planning, and we are grateful for those Trusted Advisors that have allowed us to collaborate with them for the benefit of the families we jointly serve.
What do you hope will be the result of receiving this accolade? How does it help your business in this region? We genuinely hope that the vulnerabilities faced by all during COVID-19 will help individuals and families to take greater consideration to planning and being intentional about preserving their longevity. While many families and firms first engage Theia during a crisis, we do believe that proactive planning can be of significant benefit – not only from a financial perspective, but from an emotional one. We would be so honored if this award allows for greater awareness of Theia Senior Solutions and the passion, we have for the work we do.