The Investment Coach

The gentleman was a longtime client and dear friend. In our periodic visits we talked of many things. One time he seemed a bit put out. When asked what was going on, he muttered, “My damn doctor died. Now I have to start over with some guy who doesn’t know me.” Then he laughed and asked about my health.

Professionals, coaches, teachers, mentors and others who care about you are important. Financial advisors, other advisors, professionals, and closely-held business owners, should have a plan in place to provide for succession should something happen to them. Surveys show that Baby Boomer business owners and those of the previous Traditionalist (Silent) Generation have been slow to put plans in place for succession and transition.

The Book of James 4:13-15 warns against presumption and arrogance. “Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we shall go into such and such a town, spend a year there doing business, and make a profit.’ You have no idea what your life will be like tomorrow. You are a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears. Instead you should say, ‘If the Lord wills it, we shall live to do this or that.’” (New American Bible).

We all will be sick or hurt and taken away from business or daily undertakings at some point. We know there’s a risk of permanent disability or inability to act in our own behalf. That’s why we discuss financial reserves, disability insurance, and provisions for long term care as part of financial planning basics. Ditto for powers of attorney for assets and health care, advance directives, special needs planning if applicable. We all will die, so wills, trusts, life insurance, beneficiary designations, ownership forms, gifting, charitable giving, legacy, last wishes, family love letters, etc., enter the conversation.

In the case of our financial advisory firm, we are blessed to be serving the grown children and families of longtime clients who have passed away, often working with the third generation. Some time ago, I began to get questions as to when I was going to retire. That was code for, “We love what you do for us, but will you be here in 5, 10, 15 years or beyond when we need you?” Given my longevity in the profession, it was a fair question.

Experienced advisors, Jeff McClenning and Andrew Crane, were the managing partners of a thriving advisory firm adjacent to my practice in the same building in the Forum in Peachtree Corners. I know them well, trust them, and admire their dedication to client service. In 2016, we went through a wall and doubled the size of the office, merging two firms to form Capital Insight Group, a team-based ensemble firm.

Planners grow in wisdom and understanding based on lifelong study and life experiences, ours and those of clients. We learn based on roles as sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, wives, husbands, moms, dads, grandparents, lifelong students, business owners, professionals, people of faith, citizens of service, friends, etc. We have planners in our firm young enough to have toddlers, and old enough to have kids headed for high school and college, and in my case, grandchildren.

What we have done with Capital Insight Group is the wave of the future, as financial advisors come together to form larger practices and multifaceted groups. That has long been the trend in law, accounting, and medicine. The goal with a team is provide for synergistic growth, continuity, and succession, while always having someone on hand who knows you, knows your history and needs, and cares about you.

As workers, professionals, and business owners age, some procrastinate on planning for succession or retirement because they don’t know what they will do in their Third Act. That isn’t fair to clients. We all know talented people who died young, who didn’t get a Third Act.

My plan allows me to continue purposeful work, serve clients, contribute to our team, teach Gallup’s Living Your Strengths in church and to business teams, continue to grow and learn, and be with family. I love travel, but you can’t travel 365 days per year. Nor play golf or hang out at the beach every day. Well, some can. I can’t.

Everyone will retire, somehow, some way. Everyone will transition, planned or unplanned. Suddenly in a blink of an eye, or over time. Read James 4:13-15 again. What is your succession plan?

Lewis Walker, CFP®, is a financial life planning strategist at Capital Insight Group; 770-441-2603. Securities and advisory services offered through The Strategic Financial Alliance, Inc. (SFA). Lewis Walker is a registered representative and investment adviser representative of SFA which is otherwise unaffiliated with Capital Insight Group. He is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach and a Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA®).

Loyalty to Clients and Succession Issues

The gentleman was a longtime client and dear friend. In our periodic visits we talked of many things. One time he seemed a bit put out. When asked what was going on, he muttered, “My damn doctor died. Now I have to start over with some guy who doesn’t know me.” Then he laughed and asked about my health. Professionals, coaches, teachers, mentors and others who care about you are important. Financial advisors, other advisors, professionals, and closely-held business owners, should have a plan in place to provide for succession should something happen to them. Surveys show that Baby Boomer business owners and those of the previous Traditionalist (Silent) Generation have been slow to put plans in place for succession and transition. The Book of James 4:13-15 warns against presumption and arrogance. “Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we shall go into such and such a town, spend a year there doing business, and make a profit.’ You have no idea what your life will be like tomorrow. You are a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears. Instead you should say, ‘If the Lord wills it, we shall live to do this or that.’” (New American Bible). We all will be sick or hurt and taken away from business or daily undertakings at some point. We know there’s a risk of permanent disability or inability to act in our own behalf. That’s why we discuss financial reserves, disability insurance, and provisions for long term care as part of financial planning basics. Ditto for powers of attorney for assets and health care, advance directives, special needs planning if applicable. We all will die, so wills, trusts, life insurance, beneficiary designations, ownership forms, gifting, charitable giving, legacy, last wishes, family love letters, etc., enter the conversation. In the case of our financial advisory firm, we are blessed to be serving the grown children and families of longtime clients who have passed away, often working with the third generation. Some time ago, I began to get questions as to when I was going to retire. That was code for, “We love what you do for us, but will you be here in 5, 10, 15 years or beyond when we need you?” Given my longevity in the profession, it was a fair question. Experienced advisors, Jeff McClenning and Andrew Crane, were the managing partners of a thriving advisory firm adjacent to my practice in the same building in the Forum in Peachtree Corners. I know them well, trust them, and admire their dedication to client service. In 2016, we went through a wall and doubled the size of the office, merging two firms to form Capital Insight Group, a team-based ensemble firm. Planners grow in wisdom and understanding based on lifelong study and life experiences, ours and those of clients. We learn based on roles as sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, wives, husbands, moms, dads, grandparents, lifelong students, business owners, professionals, people of faith, citizens of service, friends, etc. We have planners in our firm young enough to have toddlers, and old enough to have kids headed for high school and college, and in my case, grandchildren. What we have done with Capital Insight Group is the wave of the future, as financial advisors come together to form larger practices and multifaceted groups. That has long been the trend in law, accounting, and medicine. The goal with a team is provide for synergistic growth, continuity, and succession, while always having someone on hand who knows you, knows your history and needs, and cares about you. As workers, professionals, and business owners age, some procrastinate on planning for succession or retirement because they don’t know what they will do in their Third Act. That isn’t fair to clients. We all know talented people who died young, who didn’t get a Third Act. My plan allows me to continue purposeful work, serve clients, contribute to our team, teach Gallup’s Living Your Strengths in church and to business teams, continue to grow and learn, and be with family. I love travel, but you can’t travel 365 days per year. Nor play golf or hang out at the beach every day. Well, some can. I can’t. Everyone will retire, somehow, some way. Everyone will transition, planned or unplanned. Suddenly in a blink of an eye, or over time. Read James 4:13-15 again. What is your succession plan?

Lewis Walker, CFP®, is a financial life planning strategist at Capital Insight Group; 770-441-2603. Securities and advisory services offered through The Strategic Financial Alliance, Inc. (SFA). Lewis Walker is a registered representative and investment adviser representative of SFA which is otherwise unaffiliated with Capital Insight Group. He is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach and a Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA®).

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