Saturday, November 18th, 2017

They think… I know

In my experience, my business philosophy is different from many financial advisors.  Imagine you are meeting an advisor for an initial interview. The discussion likely centers on what you think you want. You might do a questionnaire that is supposed to assess your willingness to deal with “risk”.  Eventually, the advisor tells you he can provide a portfolio that matches your level of knowledge and risk profile.  It all sounds good.

I work in a different way. I have over two decades of accumulated knowledge and experience focused on the many aspects of financial planning. Over time, I have identified and adopted a number of principles that I know are correct and timeless, and I apply them consistently across my practice. When I meet with a prospective client I explain who I am, what I know and how I use it to help clients. I am the advisor who knows what you need, and this is often very different from what you think you want.  Thus, part of my job is to help you know more so you want what you need. People who do not wish to follow this approach do not become my clients because we are not a good match.

In that spirit, here are several contrasts between the possible expectations of prospective clients and the reality of how I add value in the lives of clients.

  • They think I will give them market analysis and outlook and make tactical changes.
    • The reality is I have a clear and disciplined investment philosophy that works especially well for long term goals.
  • Driven by media, they focus on what is happening now in markets.
    • I explain the truth of what has always happened.
  • They think this time is different.
    • I know this too shall pass.
  • They believe the economy is fragile.
    • I know the economy is diversified, entrepreneurial, transparent and resilient.
  • They think investment advice means outperforming something.
    • I know that helping to prevent them from jumping off the dependable train to their destination is how I will add value.
  • They equate market price volatility with risk.
    • I know that permanent loss of capital is the real risk.
  • They fear the mysterious stock market.
    • I know they need to own great businesses.

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