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Why we believe in 'Adaptive Financial Planning'... and are ditching the old paradigms

Updated: Apr 3

I knew that we had done something right, when she started crying.

Do I normally want to make my prospective clients cry? Of course I don't. But in this case, they were 'happy sad' tears (as my kids like to call them).

This single mom, now 55, had focused on raising her son. Her caregiver priorities switched to taking care of her aging father during the pandemic. For decades, she had not focused on her finances, which had made her feel a lot of things. Namely - that she didn't have enough. That she hadn't done enough for herself. That she ought to have _______. However, she did not regret the choices she had made for her own path and prior financial priorities.

She had spoken with financial planners and advisors for the better part of the past year, trying to find the right fit. Unfortunately, she hadn't quite found it yet.

What were some of the limiting factors that she indicated did not resonate with her?

  1. No face to face communication. I was the first person to offer a Zoom call for a consultation. She didn't get to look anyone else in the eye to develop a sense of trust.

  2. Focusing on the binder. What will the client get as a takeaway from planning? A long, protracted document with a long task list. How does this connect emotionally with the client's needs? Who is HELPING the client actually do what needs to get done?

  3. Discussions that are based on collaboration. Most adults don't like being told what to do. Wouldn't the experience be improved if we were communicating and collaborating on decisions, on implementing the planning, and adapting the recommendations to the client's changing life circumstances?

We are ADAPTING the financial planning process. Our comprehensive planning engagement isi set up to do just that.

I can't wait to walk witih this client on her journey to establish her financial picture. Knowing that as her life circumstances inevitably will change again, we're going to ensure that her planning is adaptive and flexible, and that she has the right partner to work alongside her.

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