It’s true, and I’m not sorry to say it. I’m a boring Financial Advisor. I came to this realization not too long ago while having a casual conversation with a new acquaintance. We got to the part in small talk where you both say what you do for a living and I said I was a Financial Advisor. Their reply came swiftly, “Oh nice. Got any hot stock tips?” I replied that, sadly, I didn’t and that I wasn’t really that kind of advisor, more properly called a Broker.
Of course, it’s not that person’s fault. Most of what we know about the financial industry comes from media and it pretty much all revolves around stockbrokers behaving quite badly, doing something illegal, and ending up in jail unrepentant. I took the opportunity to explain what I really do: Help people make the best possible decisions regarding their finances to achieve the best possible outcomes.
It’s boring, I know, but it’s the honest truth. I want you to have the best chance of doing well now and well into the future, and that’s sadly pretty boring advice most times. When a friend calls asking for a hot investment for their $2,000 in the bank I ask, “How much would you have in the bank after you put that in the market?” They replied, “After paying this month’s bills? A few hundred.” I told them they should probably leave it in the bank in case of an emergency. The wind really left the conversation at that point.
In general, I’ve learned not to give informal advice like that anymore. I tell people they can happily call me during the week and set up an appointment if they want my genuine advice, where they can then engage me as their Advisor with a proper contract and fee. Barring that I’ll give a smile, some sympathy, but not really much more. I can’t help them get rich overnight, turn a quick dollar, or be buying a yacht next week. Unless of course they put together a savings plan with me a while ago and our plans are now coming to fruition!
I want you to have money for an emergency, excellent long term growth potential, a plan that’s viable in good times and bad, and track a record for my advice that shows my worth. All of that adds up to me giving you responsible advice, and sadly responsible advice rarely takes home the prize for people’s choice.
If you’d like to talk more about making the responsible choice, contact me! And in the meantime, know that doing the right thing isn’t always exciting but it’s almost always satisfying.