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March 31, 2020
Patrick Tucker is the founder of True Measure Wealth Management, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $150 million in AUM for 89 client families. Patrick has a background in business operations and financial management from having started his career with UPS and has managed to transfer those business skills to managing his own advisory firm. Today he joins the show to discuss how he built his intentionally-designed advisory firm by overcoming the growth imperative pressure that the industry tends to put on us all. Listen in as we discuss why Patrick splits his advisory fee structure to accommodate his different groups of clients, as well as the key business metrics he focuses on to ensure he is spending his time and business resources properly. You’ll learn what it takes to triple your business in the first two years, why Patrick keeps his internal team lean by using contractors, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/170    
March 24, 2020
Alexandra Levi is the founder and managing partner at Element Financial Group, a hybrid RIA that oversees nearly $430 million of assets under advisement for 170 clients. As a firm providing both investment management and financial planning services, it may surprise you that Alexandra has been able to grow her revenue to be split almost 50/50 between the two. Today she joins the show to share how she has combated the risk of fee compression and her unique approach to running a hybrid firm. Listen in as we discuss how Alexandra shows her clients how she will keep their money organized in a way they can understand, why she continues to do quarterly meetings but keeps the majority of them virtual, and more. If you have ever wondered whether you should hire a business partner or are ready to control the direction of your career, this is the episode for you. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/169              
March 17, 2020
Erin Botsford is the founder of Botsford Financial Group, a hybrid RIA with the LPL platform that oversees $1 billion in assets under management. Erin has built and evolved her firm over the years, starting out with it being centered around herself as the lead advisor and ultimately selling the firm but keeping her name on the door. Today she joins the show to discuss how she built her business over the past 30 years, as well as the transformation she made in the first decade of her career. Listen in as we discuss the shift she made from lead advisor to CEO and how she nearly tripled the growth of the firm in the three years that followed. You will learn how she developed herself into a lead rainmaker role (despite admittedly not being a natural businesswoman), how she shifted control of client relationships, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/168   
March 10, 2020
Scott Frank is the founder of Stones Steps Financial an RIA that has rapidly grown to 67 clients with over 400,000$ of annualized revenue in just five years. Scott has evolved his advisory firm from a highly technical base to a financial planning approach with clients based on the George Kinder life planning process. Today Scott joins the show to share how he incorporates life planing questions into the first three meetings of his financial planning process as a way to understand his clients better. Listen in as Scott shares how he convinces his clients to implement the strategies he recommends by creating a buy-in into the financial planning process. You will learn where traditional financial planning software intersects with the life planning approach and how he has built his business around this life planning approach. If you are intrigued by the George Kinder life planning approach or you want to simplify your pricing, this is the episode for you. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/167           
March 3, 2020
Peter Mallouk is the founder and president of Creative Planning, an independent RIA that oversees nearly 50 billion in assets under management for over 30,000 households. Peter has built his firm to the impressive size that it is within the last 16 years without any mergers, acquisitions or outside capital along the way. Today Peter joins the show to discuss Creative Planning’s growth path and how that has shifted over the years to referrals from existing clients. In this episode we talk in depth about Peter’s thoughts on broader industry trends including why Creative Planning remains committed to the AUM model and not charging separately for planning. You will learn what he plans to do with the outside capital that his firm raised, the firms aggressive growth plan over the next three years and much more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/166           
February 25, 2020
Steve Kampschmidt is the founder of Freedom Found Financial, an RIA that oversees just under $20 million in assets under management for 30 affluent clients. After breaking away from a training program at a major wirehouse, Steve recently formed his advisory firm because he realized it was more economical for him to operate his own business and control his own expenses. He joins the show today to discuss how he has rapidly grown his firm since going independent and what he went through to comply with broker protocol.  Listen in as Steve explains how he built his client base at the Wirehouse using cold-calling techniques and the salary base they provided while he did so. You will learn about the alternative non-AUM business model he created, why having confidence in yourself is key, and what you should realistically expect when it comes to clients sticking with you after you leave a big firm. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/165     
February 18, 2020
Julia Carlson is the founder and CEO of Financial Freedom Wealth Management Group, a hybrid RIA that oversees nearly $300 million in AUM for almost 1,000 client households. Today she joins the show to discuss how her daughter’s tragic car accident led her to look for a more flexible work schedule, which ultimately led her to becoming the business owner of the firm. Listen in as we talk about Julia’s journey through her advisory career and how she got her foot in the door through speaking with small local business owners. You will learn how to stay in charge without being in control, why Julia decided to let go of client relationships, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/164          
February 11, 2020
Michael Gennaway is a financial advisor and program manager for SoCal Wealth Management, a hybrid advisory firm that oversees $260 million of assets under management for over 1,800 clients. Today Michael joins the show to discuss how he has built SoCal under the Credit Union of Southern California, getting constant new clients from them with the caveat that SoCal must take every new client referral. Listen in as we talk about the unique ways that the credit union is complementary to SoCal Wealth Management, as well as how they are managing to acquire three new clients every week. You’ll learn how they screen their clients to ensure they are the best fit for their firm, how to find the right Credit Union for you, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/163     
February 4, 2020
Tim Bickmore is the co-founder and director of financial planning for LBW Wealth Management, an independent RIA that oversees more than $50 million in assets under management for 230 client households. Today Tim joins the show to discuss how the firm grew so quickly and why they are concerned that what helped grow their firm initially may not work for future growth. Listen in as we discuss the evolution of Tim’s advisory firm, including why they shifted to a blended model with a base monthly subscription fee and how they are ensuring profitability for new clients. You will learn LBW’s financial planning process for younger clients, the increasingly cash-flow based approach they have taken, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/162    
January 28, 2020
Tessa Felix is the HR and Operations Lead for PWL Capital, an advisory firm that oversees nearly $3.6 billion in assets under management. Tessa has focused on developing the culture of her advisory firm and has put systems in place to make everyone accountable for their work, while still making it a fun environment. Today she joins the show to discuss how she is making her firm an enjoyable place to work in, as well as the leadership system she has incorporated into her management approach. Listen in as we talk about the weekly team meetings, internal podcast, and monthly one-on-ones Tessa uses to maintain the culture of the firm. She shares how she transitioned from being a peer of her co-workers to their manager and how she came to be the culture lead for her firm. If you’re ready to cultivate a growth mindset within your own business, this is the episode for you! For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/161      
January 21, 2020
Gabriel Shahin is the founder of Falcon Wealth, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $200 million in assets under management for 370 clients. Today Gabriel joins the show to share how he has built such a successful firm from scratch in just five years by spending a significant amount on marketing. In this episode, we discuss how he allocates his proactive marketing dollars from outsourced SEO experts to Google ads, as well as a weekly radio show. You’ll learn how Gabriel handles the sales process, why he decided to hire a stand-alone business development associate, and what it takes to rapidly grow your firm. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/160      
January 14, 2020
Kelly Shikany is a financial advisor and Director of Wealth Management for Lakeside Wealth, a hybrid RIA where she manages a base of nearly $90 million in client assets. Deciding to not hang her hat as a solo advisor, Kelly instead navigates existing advisory firms so she can focus more on her clients. She joins the show to discuss her career path and how she has worked her way to the successful position she is in today. In this episode, we talk about how Kelly grew her client base in her younger years by conducting “women’s circles” so she could establish relationships in her small-town community. Listen in to learn how she differentiated herself from other advisors in the area, how she structures her week to maximize personal productivity, and what helped her overcome feelings of failure so they wouldn’t hold her back. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/159      
January 7, 2020
Steph Bruno is the founder of Sea to Peak Financial Advisors, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $70 million in assets under management for 45 affluent clients. Today Steph joins the show to discuss the process of branching out and starting her own independent firm after spending 15 years as an employee for another firm.   Listen in as she explains why she decided to take the leap from a stable paycheck to building her own business from scratch, as well as how she rebooted her marketing in the process. You’ll learn what made her decide to hire a personal coach to help her work through the difficult first few years of running her own business, how she integrates life planning conversations into her planning process, and what she’s choosing to focus on now that she is running her own firm. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/158      
December 31, 2019
Peter Lazaroff is a shareholder and the Co-Chief Investment Officer of Plancorp, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $4.4 billion of assets under management for 1,300 affluent clients. Today he joins the show to discuss how he has been able to build his own personal brand, both as a mechanism to grow his client base and to help him navigate career opportunities. Listen in as Peter describes the way he has “niched down” by creating content for his target audience through a blog, emails, and a book. You’ll learn why he encourages his team to create personal brands, the importance of staying focused on the clients you want to reach, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/157     
December 24, 2019
DeLynn Zell is the founder and CEO of Bridgeworth Financial, a hybrid RIA that oversees nearly $1.6 billion of assets under management for almost 2,000 clients. Today DeLynn joins the show to discuss how Bridgeworth was built from the start to sustain past the founders and how they have taken steps to attract next-generation talent to ensure the firm remains a success in the long run. Listen in as we talk about the difficulties DeLynn faced in the early years of her career, as well as how the gender split of CFP professionals may shift in the future. You’ll learn the four-tier career path her firm has created, how they structure their compensation for partners, and why they are reinvesting into business development and training for next-generation partners. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/156   
December 17, 2019
Derek Notman is the founder of Intrepid Wealth Partners, operating as an agent for New York Life and overseeing nearly $15 million in assets under management for almost 200 clients. Today Derek joins the show to share how he evolved his advisory firm from a high-volume, bricks-and-mortar office into an entirely virtual practice. Listen in as he shares how he built up his virtual practice and team, as well as how he has been able to grow his business and income. You’ll learn what made him decide to transfer 80% of his clients to other advisors, why he has chosen to create a narrower niche focus, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/155    
December 10, 2019
Mary Beth Storjohann is the Chief Marketing Officer for Abacus Wealth Partners, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $2.6 billion in assets under management for almost 1,700 clients. After joining us for episode 61 nearly two years ago, today she is back for a second time to discuss the major changes she has made since then. Listen in as we discuss why Mary Beth decided to sell her own firm to take on a marketing leadership role in an even larger firm, as well as what this new role entails. You’ll learn how Mary Beth determined avatars for the firm's marketing, how she allocates her marketing budget, and what she believes every firm can do to better their marketing. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/154   
December 3, 2019
Dan Allison is the founder of Feedback Marketing Group, a marketing and sales consulting firm that helps financial advisors to increase their growth by teaching methods to generate referrals from existing clients. Today Dan joins the show to discuss how he uses his background in behavioral psychology to help his clients to find more referrals by reducing their mental barriers, allowing them to be more open to the possibility of new clients.  Listen in as Dan shares the five key points that he focuses on when helping generate more referrals, including being educated on the services your firm provides. You’ll learn the importance of showing that you actually care about your clients, what your introduction strategy should be, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/153 
November 26, 2019
Beverly Flaxington is the founder of The Collaborative, which provides sales training and organizational development support for financial service firms. A firm believer that it’s not just about knowing what to do, it’s about knowing how to change your behavior to actually do it, Beverly joins the show to share the human behavioral coaching approach she takes to teach sales and how to get more comfortable selling your services.  In this episode, we discuss how to determine if a prospect is a qualifying client, as well as the right questions to ask a client to get to know them better. Listen in to hear Beverly’s advice on how to conduct a meeting with a client, the importance of getting specific about who you serve, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/152   
November 19, 2019
Luna Jaffe is the founder of Lunaria Financial, an advisory firm that oversees nearly $55 million in assets under management for 100 client households. In an effort to make financial knowledge affordable, Luna launched the Sacred Money Studios and Prosperity Pie Shoppe, a literal pie shop across the street from her advisory firm office that offers low-cost financial education programs on budgeting.  In this episode, we discuss the budgeting philosophy her business teaches, as well as the real-world challenges that come with opening up a retail store with employees. Listen in to hear what Luna has learned while trying to expand the reach of financial education through a retail store, how she helps clients implement necessary changes, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/151  
November 12, 2019
Tanya Nichols is the founder of Align Financial, a hybrid advisory firm that oversees nearly $50 million of assets for 80 client households. After nearly 20 years of working in a larger firm environment, Tanya finally found the courage to start her own advisory firm and took the leap to create the business she wanted. In this episode, she shares her journey through the advisor industry, focusing on the moment of realization that led her to not only leave her firm, but leave her husband as well. Listen in as she explains how a sense of community has helped her along the way, how she plans to double her revenue, and what she says was the biggest surprise of her advisory career. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/150 
November 5, 2019
Susan John is the managing director and financial advisor for F.L. Putnam, an independent RIA that manages nearly $2 billion of assets under management. After 25 years of building her own independent financial planning firm from scratch, Susan decided to join F.L. Putnam for part of her succession—but not her retirement. Today she joins the show to discuss why she made that transition and how she has developed her financial planning process over the past three decades. Listen in as Susan explains her process and why she charges a full upfront fee to do financial planning “snapshots” for every client before even taking them on as an ongoing client. You’ll learn what she does for retired clients, how she expanded ownership of her firm, and how she grew her financial advisory firm to $350 million. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/149
October 29, 2019
Laura LaTourette is the founder of Family Wealth Management Group, a hybrid advisory firm that oversees $45 million of assets under management for 86 client households. Today Laura joins the show to share how she has built her firm to work primarily with the LGBTQ community and how she found the right time to come out to her broker-dealer. Listen in as we discuss her financial planning process, which includes four planning meetings with every new client. You’ll learn how she refined her website and her data gathering form to speak to her niche, why she recently hired a CEO for her firm, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/148 
October 22, 2019
Jeff Dobyns is the founder of Southwestern Investment Group, a hybrid advisory firm that oversees nearly $3.5 billion of assets under management. Today Jeff joins the show to discuss how he has developed next generation talent in his firm by only hiring new advisors in their 20s and giving them the opportunity to learn alongside experienced advisors. In this episode, you’ll hear about the mentoring program Jeff’s firm has built, as well as how the firm compensates these new advisors as they are learning. Listen in to discover why Jeff prefers not to hire experienced advisors, what tasks his firm ends up giving to the new advisors, and the marketing technique his team uses to grow their business. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/147 
October 15, 2019
Ross Levin is the co-founder and CEO of Accredited Investors Wealth Management, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $2 billion of assets under management for 475 affluent clients. Today Ross joins the show to discuss the way he systematized the financial planning process across his firm and developed a wealth management index system that tracks clients' progress. Listen in as he shares how he balances delving into the technical topics of financial planning versus trying to ask clients the right questions to explore the client's side of those issues. You’ll learn why it’s so important to have a systematized process, what Ross says is the most important thing when building a firm, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/146
October 8, 2019
Roger Pine is the co-founder of Holistiplan, a tax planning software built to systematize and automate the process of reviewing a client's tax return to find potential planning opportunities. Today he joins the show to discuss how he transitioned from working as a financial advisor to becoming a financial tech entrepreneur. Listen in as we talk about Roger’s software and the ever blurring lines between where a CPA’s tax services end and an advisor’s begin. You'll hear what it is like to be a financial tech entrepreneur, as well as advice for financial advisors who see an opportunity to develop a tech solution. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/145 
October 1, 2019
Tom Bradley is the former president of TD Ameritrade Institutional, one of the leading RIA custodial platforms serving nearly 7,000 independent RIAs with almost $600 billion of assets held in custody. For over 25 years, Tom was a part of the growth of financial advisors operating as independent RIAs on a custodial platform. Today he joins the show to discuss the evolution of the RIA custody model and how technology has affected the business. Listen in as we talk in depth about how TD Ameritrade uses the Veo open-access platform, as well as the surprising ways that RIA custodians generate their revenue from advisors and their clients. You’ll hear Tom’s views on why the RIA custodial options for how cash is invested has become such a hot topic and his predictions for the future of the RIA custodial business. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/144 
September 24, 2019
Cathy Curtis is the founder of Curtis Financial Planning, a solo independent RIA that oversees nearly $60 million in assets under management for 52 client households. By positioning her business into a niche of serving women—in particular, single, independent-minded women who want to work with a female advisor—Cathy has managed to stand out in an over-crowded marketplace to build her firm. Listen in as we discuss why Cathy chose her particular niche, as well as how she has been able to target her marketing so effectively that most of her new clients find her through a simple Google search. You’ll learn all about her financial planning process, why she has had to implement a minimum requirement fee, and how she managed to overcome impostor syndrome on her road to success. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/143 
September 17, 2019
Matt Oechsli is the founder and CEO of Oechsli Institute, which does primary research into affluent investors and how they select advisors. A marketing and sales consultant for financial advisors, Matt joins the show to share how you can connect with more affluent clients simply by building better relationships with them. Listen in as we discuss the importance of paying attention to details—like the names of clients’ children and pets—during the relationship-building process, as well as what good client communication is all about. Matt shares what it takes to build trust, an effective practice for getting more referrals, and his advice for new advisors starting out in the business. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/142 
September 10, 2019
Kristen Luke is the founder of Kaleido Creative Studio, a marketing consulting firm that specializes in multi-advisor fee-only RIAs with $100 million to $1 billion in assets under management. Today she joins the show to discuss the wheel of advisor marketing activity she has created, as well as its six core areas and what it takes to improve in each of them. Listen in as Kristen explains the importance of recognizing the triggering events that brought your clients in and why defining an ideal client profile really is essential to differentiate and build a successful marketing funnel. You’ll learn the starting steps to online marketing, why podcasts are replacing webinars and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/141 
September 3, 2019
Adam Cmejla is the founder of Integrated Planning and Wealth Management, an independent RIA that oversees approximately $45 million in assets under advisement for nearly 100 clients. Over the past two years, Adam’s practice has undergone an incredible transformation, increasing their financial planning fees and growing revenue by nearly 80%. In this episode, Adam shares how his marketing process has evolved, as well as what made him decide to narrow down his focus and serve only optometrists. Listen in to discover how a shift in his mindset has helped his firm to grow phenomenally—while also allowing him to spend more time with his family—the steps he took to raise his fees for existing clients while bringing in new ideal clients, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/140 
August 27, 2019
Michele Clark is the senior portfolio manager for Acropolis Investment Management with more than 25 years of experience in financial services. From cold knocking to becoming a regional investor educational specialist and now working in investment management, Michele really has done it all within the industry. She even ran her own independent hourly financial planning practice until she recently decided to “plug-in” to a larger firm. In this episode, Michele discusses her non-traditional journey through the financial advisory industry, as well as how she managed to re-balance both her business and the work she is doing in it. Listen in as she shares her best tips for attracting clients no matter where you are, the importance of developing an expertise, and how to confront the inevitable challenges you will face when starting out on your own. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/139 
August 20, 2019
Douglas Boneparth is the founder of Bone Fide Wealth, an independent RIA that manages nearly $80 million of assets under management. After starting out in a fairly traditional broker-dealer model serving affluent retirees, Douglas decided to transition and focus on high-income millennials. Today he joins the show to discuss why he chose to invest in younger clients and how he has been able to successfully market to and attract such high-income millennials. Listen in as he shares why he decided to stop implementing term insurance policies, as well as what he sees as the key to being able to work with his younger clients. You’ll get his take on why the industry tends to have a difficult time attracting millennials, the value of making things easier for clients, and what younger advisors should know as they are looking to get started in the industry. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/138 
August 13, 2019
Lou Tranquilli is the founder of Tranquilli Financial Advisor, an independent full-service financial firm that oversees $100 million in assets under management for 110 clients. Now focused on a niche that has helped triple his firm in under four years, Lou joins the show to discuss how his advisory firm has evolved over more than two and a half decades in business. Listen in as he explains how he is transitioning into the independent RIA channel after having started out as a traditional life insurance sales agent, as well as how he has structured his firm. You’ll get valuable tips for growing your business, hiring the right people, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/137 
August 6, 2019
Nina O’Neal is a partner and investment advisor with Archer Investment Management, a hybrid advisory firm that oversees nearly $90 million in assets under management. She joins the show today to talk about her advisory firm’s structure and why they have no plans to change it, as they don't view the hybrid model as a way to the independent RIA model. Listen in to hear Nina speak candidly about how she juggles being an advisor, a firm owner, and a parent. You’ll learn how she empowers other female advisors to establish an advisory business and balance the rest of their lives in the process, how her firm handles its mixture of fee-based advisory and commission-based brokerage business, and their plans for the future. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/136 
July 30, 2019
Kathryn Brown is the co-founder of Morton Brown Family Wealth, a firm that oversees nearly $110 million of assets under management for 85 affluent households. With her firm now positioned for the potential of 10x growth in the upcoming years, Kathryn has overcome many challenges to get to where she is today. In this episode, she opens up about her inspirational journey, including how she persevered despite learning she had breast cancer and undergoing surgeries while she was preparing to go independent. She also discusses the playbooks that she and her partner developed for Morton Brown, why her firm decided to bring on a data geek as one of their first hires, and so much more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/135 
July 23, 2019
Andrew Altfest is the president of Altfest Personal Wealth Management, an independent RIA based in New York City that oversees $1.3 billion for nearly 600 affluent clients. Andrew has become the second-generation leader in his family’s business, which was started by his parents, and he joins the show to discuss the dynamics of a family business and how he is positioning the firm for the future. In this episode, Andrew explains what ultimately changed his mind about pursuing a career at his parents’ firm—something he was not initially planning to do. You’ll learn what it’s like working for a family-owned firm, the technology the firm uses to communicate with clients, and how you can better track and find planning opportunities for your clients, too. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/134 
July 16, 2019
Danna Jacobs is the co-founder of Legacy Care Wealth, an advisory firm and accounting practice that she launched with her brother. While Danna handles the financial planning side of things, her brother focuses on the accounting and tax planning as they grow their business together. Today she joins the show to discuss how her firm works with next-generation clients and what it’s like running a business with a sibling. Listen in as we talk in depth about their blended fee model, which charges a monthly fee for ongoing planning advice that shifts into an AUM fee as clients’ savings and portfolios grow. Danna explains the structured agenda she uses for every client—covering accomplishments since the last meeting and key client takeaways that become the clients’ homework for the next meeting—how she balanced motherhood during the early stages of her business, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/133 
July 9, 2019
Linda Leitz is the president of Peace of Mind Financial Planning, an independent RIA based in Colorado Springs that provides comprehensive financial planning services on a retainer fee basis to nearly 100 clients. Today Linda joins the show to discuss what she has learned over her 20 years of experience, including key takeaways about pricing her services and why her team of four works with clients for an ongoing retainer fee. She also explains how she has overcome the self-doubt that so many of us experience when quoting our planning fees so that she is able to charge what she is really worth. Listen in as we talk in depth about Linda’s decision to shift from being a solo advisor under a cost-sharing partnership to building her own multi-advisor team, as well as what surprised her most when switching to a team structure after being solo for so long. You’ll learn why she decided to go back to school for a Ph.D. in financial planning as an experienced practitioner, how her mentality has shifted over the years, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/132 
July 2, 2019
Dan Goldie, the former president of Dan Goldie Financial Services, started out in 1991 with no clients or assets under management. Through focus and drive, he built up his firm to $900 million of assets for 275 affluent clients—all without even a full-time administrative staff member. Today he joins the show to discuss how he structured his advisory business and his approach to customizing everything he does. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/131 
June 25, 2019
Ashley Micciche is the CEO of True North Retirement Advisors, a firm she founded with her father. Today she joins the show to discuss how she achieved work-life satisfaction while growing a business and starting a family. Ashley will delve deep into the arrangement she made with her father to be the backup advisor for her clients and how she communicated the news to her clients that she was going to take time off for maternity leave. Listen in to learn how Ashley built her career in the early years, going from cold-calling to cold-knocking to build up a client base, as well as how she opened up the conversation with small business owners to quickly get their interest for a follow-up meeting. If you are looking to start a family while running a business or start a new firm (or both), this is the episode for you. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/130 
June 18, 2019
Donna Skeels Cygan, the President of Sage Future Financial, joins the show to discuss how she runs a firm overseeing nearly $90 million in assets under management and still maintains a work-life balance. After building her first successful firm, Donna decided to sell it and come back three years later to start over again, this time building a much more deliberately-crafted schedule that’s intended to only ever have 40 affluent clients. In this episode, Donna shares her journey in building her first and second advisory firms, as well as how she decided which clients she wanted to bring to her second firm when starting up again. You’ll learn about her process and the tools she uses, how she employs a virtual assistant to maximize her time with her clients, and why she has no concerns about her ability to remain competitive as a stand-alone solo advisor. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/129
June 11, 2019
After starting his first of five businesses at the age of 15, there aren’t many business activities Justin Goodbread hasn’t experienced. In 2009, he founded Heritage Investors, an independent RIA based in Knoxville, Tennessee, in hopes of helping individuals, business owners, and retirees attain their financial goals. Today, Justin joins the show to discuss how his firm has crafted a niche in working with small business owners and how they track how each owner’s net worth increases over time. In this episode, we talk about why Justin finds it more effective to break his advisory fee—which can sometimes be as much as $20,000 a year—into a more cash flow friendly monthly subscription fee. Listen in to learn how he has focused his marketing toward these small business owners and how doing so has ironically brought him more prospects outside his niche. You’ll also hear which five business books he reads every year to run his own advisory business more efficiently. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/128 
June 4, 2019
Jania Stout is the Managing Director and Co-Founder of Fiduciary Plan Advisors at HighTower Advisors, an advisory firm that is focused on 401(k) planning. Her team is responsible for nearly $4 billion in assets across almost 120 businesses. In this episode, we discuss how Jania was able to rapidly grow her business entirely from scratch over the past 5 years, as well as how she built her own personal brand and reputation as a trusted fiduciary advisor. Listen in to hear Jania share what it takes to service and support mid to large size 401(k) plans and detail the fee structure for her business. You’ll learn why she built and automated a report in her CRM that shows her clients all of the behind-the-scenes work that the firm does on their behalf, how she used LinkedIn to help her business grow, and the challenges she faced when going independent. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/127 
May 28, 2019
Martine Lellis has had a unique career with Sullivan Bruyette Speros & Blayney (SBSB). She started out as an associate advisor, and after seeing the firm sold to a bank, she later moved into a mid-level management role and continued climbing all the way up to become the firm’s Chief Operating Officer and Principal. She then joined four other principals to buy the firm back from the bank, making it private again. In this episode, Martine shares the process of selling and buying back the firm and how her role has changed throughout the years with SBSB. We also discuss the company’s model for serving affluent clients and why they offer tax preparation services on top of financial planning and investment management. Listen in to find out the challenges that surprised Martine the most and her biggest breakthrough in her career. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/126 
May 21, 2019
With sixteen years of experience in the wealth management industry, Sabrina Lowell is a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) and a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach® (CPCC). With a focus on working with career engaged couples and clients in tech, Sabrina brings her expertise to her workplace at Private Ocean and helps clients form and achieve their goals. In this episode, she shares the collaborative process of selling Mosaic Financial Partners, Inc. to Private Ocean and how she broke the news to her clients that a transition was going to happen. We discuss how their management team worked with an investment banker and the key filters the firm used to vet their prospective buyers. Listen in to discover the importance of communication when selling or merging a firm and the advice Sabrina wishes she’d had when she started out. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/125 
May 14, 2019
Shirl Penney is the co-founder and CEO of Dynasty Financial Partners, a back and middle office service provider for large independent RIAs. With more than $32 billion on their platform across the 47 advisory firms they support, Dynasty has focused itself purely on being a highly-scaled service provider, while allowing the firms it services to remain completely independent. In this episode, Shirl opens up about his entrepreneurial journey, as well as how he maintained focus and perseverance during the two and a half years it took for him to be able to take his first paycheck from the business. Listen in to hear how he built his company from zero to 70 employees over a decade, the sacrifices he had to make to get to where he is today, and the key lessons he learned along the way. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/124 
May 7, 2019
My guest today has one of the largest independent RIAs we’ve had on the podcast. Brent Brodeski is the co-founder and CEO of Savant Capital, an independent RIA that oversees more than $6 billion of assets under management for nearly 5,000 clients. With a team of 173 employees, Savant has also shared opportunities for ownership across more than 50 employees at the firm. In this episode, Brent shares the trajectory of Savant’s almost entirely organic growth to over $6 billion in AUM, as well as how the firm navigated the all-too-common challenge of buying out a co-founder. Listen in to learn how they re-capitalized the firm, the system they put in place to strategically plan for and execute the business’s goals, and how they plan to 10x the firm in the next ten years. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/123 
April 30, 2019
My guest today built his firm as a support platform for independent advisors. Jeff Concepcion is the founder and CEO of Stratos Wealth Partners, a corporate RIA and super OSJ under the LPL platform that oversees over $13 billion of assets under advisement across nearly 300 advisors in 100 different locations. In this episode, Jeff talks about the challenges he faced launching his firm, because while the business is undeniably successful now, he didn’t take a paycheck out of it for the first three years. Listen in to learn how he got through the tough times he experienced in the beginning, the important lessons he learned about investing in your business, and how he divides up advisory firm tasks to improve efficiency. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/122 
April 23, 2019
Rachel Robasciotti is the founder of Robasciotti & Phillipson, an independent RIA that oversees $140 million of assets for more than 100 individual clients. With 15 years of experience in the industry, Rachel has not only built a successful firm, but also a unique proprietary investment process (dubbed RISE, for Return on Investment and Social Equity) that goes beyond doing socially responsible investing and actually engages her local community to help with the screening process. In this episode, Rachel shares her path through the financial services industry, including the unique challenges she faced starting a firm not only as a young advisor, but as a young black female who came from a poor upbringing. Listen in to learn how she had handled the pressure to conform to the industry standard expectations of financial advisors, her experience going out on her own at the age of 25, and the important lessons she learned along the way. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/121 
April 16, 2019
Manisha Thakor is the founder of MoneyZen, a financial literacy and education platform focused on empowering women, and the VP of Financial Wellbeing at Brighton Jones, an independent RIA with $5 billion in assets under management. After following quite a unique path into the industry, Manisha built her own platform to share her message of financial literacy for women through speaking gigs and media appearances—despite being an introvert. In this episode, Manisha shares what it really takes to build a personal finance brand, as well as how she learned to view her introversion as an asset rather than a hindrance. Listen in to learn how she built her confidence, what she wishes she had known earlier, and how she has remained successful by forming relationships, building connections, and relying on the power of being her authentic self. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/120 
April 9, 2019
My guest today keeps up our recent trend of speaking with advisors who serve a unique niche. The founder of Practical Financial Planning, Kenneth Robinson focuses his planning services specifically on Ohio public sector employees. A former public sector employee himself—before he transitioned into financial planning 20 years ago—Kenneth has managed to maximize the efficiency of his practice by developing a specialized knowledge of public sector employee issues and pensions. In this episode, Kenneth shares how he built his business in such a narrow niche, as well as how his heavy specialization not only built his confidence as an advisor, but also made him comfortable increasing his fees. Listen in to learn how he structures his business, tips for dealing with toxic clients, and powerful advice he has received over the years. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/119 
April 2, 2019
Jared Reynolds is a partner at Wilkerson & Reynolds, an advisory firm that oversees nearly $160 million in assets under management. With a heavy focus on working with small business owners and their 401k plans, Jared has grown his business by serving a niche of bass fisherman, for whom he regularly organizes fishing and hunting trip expeditions as prospecting activities. In this episode, Jared shares how he turned his passion into an effective business model, as well as his experience building his firm into the success it is today. Listen in to learn his strategy for networking and building relationships while having fun, what kind of marketing activities he’s found to develop the best prospects, and how any advisor can create a similar opportunity with his or her own hobbies and passions. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/118 
March 26, 2019
Josh Patrick is the founder of Stage 2 Planning, an independent RIA with a niche focus on working with small business owners. Leveraging his own personal experience as a small business owner—before he transitioned into his second career as a financial planner—Josh has been able to create a deeply specialized advice process for his clients that commands retainer fees in excess of $50,000 per year. In this episode, Josh shares what he has done to make his expertise known and build a steady flow of prospects who seek him out. Listen in to learn what he says most advisors don’t understand about building a successful business, the important lessons he learned while building his own, and what advisors can do to lessen the demands of their businesses on themselves, while simultaneously making significantly more profit. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/117 
March 19, 2019
My guest today is one of the pioneers of financial planning under the RIA model. Harold Evensky is the co-founder and chairman of Evensky & Katz / Foldes Financial, an independent RIA in South Florida that oversees nearly $1.5 billion in assets under management. With over thirty years of experience in the field, Harold literally wrote the book on taking a holistic, goals-based wealth management approach to portfolio design with his 1997 publication, Wealth Management: The Financial Advisor's Guide to Investing and Managing Client Assets. In this episode, Harold shares his experience starting an RIA in the early days of the independent advisor movement, before platforms like Schwab Advisor Services even existed. Listen in to learn what he did to help his firm compete against mega wirehouses, how the industry has evolved in the three decades since he started, and what it will take for financial planning to truly be recognized as a profession by the public. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/116 
March 12, 2019
My guest today has crafted a niche of not just serving, but also trying to empower female clients. Hilary Hendershott is the founder of Hendershott Wealth Management, an independent RIA that oversees nearly $75 million of assets under management, as well as the creator of a coaching program for women trying to accumulate wealth and the host of a very successful podcast focused on helping women take control of their finances. In this episode, Hilary shares her professional journey and how she grew her business into the success it is today. Listen in to learn how she set up and leveraged her podcast to grow her client base, how she overcame impostor syndrome to build up her confidence as a financial planner, and her advice for women just starting out in the industry. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/115
March 5, 2019
Dennis Moseley-Williams is the founder of DMW Strategic Consulting, a boutique consulting firm that works with financial advisors to help them design and deliver a great client experience. Not simply focused on how to improve client service, Dennis studied under Joseph Pine, co-author of the seminal book The Experience Economy, and is trained in applying the book’s concepts specifically to the domain of financial advisors. In this episode, Dennis breaks down the difference between simply giving better service and a creating truly distinct experience. Listen in to learn what practical steps you can take to start adapting your firm toward improving client experience, how to more effectively target who you want to serve, and so much more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/114 
February 26, 2019
My guest today has made it her mission to empower women to take control of their finances. Stacy Francis is the president and CEO of Francis Financial, an independent RIA with a unique niche focus on recent widows and women going through the divorce process. She is also the founder of Savvy Ladies, a nonprofit focused on improving the financial wellbeing of all women. In this episode, Stacy opens up about the challenging family situation that led her to enter the financial services industry to help women in particular, as well as why she says today’s market is the worst one for divorcees that we’ve seen in nearly a decade. Listen in to learn how she built her business up to managing nearly $280 million in assets, why she hired business coaches for both herself and her team, and how making the decision to go all-in on a niche has helped Francis Financial grow as much in the past three years as it did in the 15 years leading up to the change. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/113 
February 19, 2019
Andrea Schlapia is the founder of Ironstone, a practice management coaching and consulting firm for financial advisors who are struggling with the business execution challenges of transitioning from a practice to a business. Building upon her own experience as a financial advisor and a practice management consultant, Andrea has developed what she calls the “fundamental four” pillars of practice management, as well as tools and strategies to support each one. In this episode, she shares her fundamental four framework and where most advisory firms struggle within those key elements of running a successful business. Listen in to learn how often Andrea advises firms to take development days to work solely on the business, why she says it’s so important to be ultra-selective when hiring and developing your team, and her specific process for assessing prospective hires and training staff to ensure her team stays as strong as possible. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/112 
February 12, 2019
Today I’m joined by our first international guest, who gives us a look at not only what financial advisor businesses look like in other parts of the world, but also how all advisors should start looking at their value propositions. Jim Stackpool is the founder of Certainty Advice Group, a practice management consulting firm for financial advisors based in Australia. With a unique focus on how to price and demonstrate the true value of financial advice, Jim is a firm believer that the expert value of advisors should be distinct from the products we implement. In this episode, Jim shares what advisors need to consider when it comes to setting fees, as well as his advice for demonstrating value instead of simply justifying prices. Listen in to learn how to know whether your advisory services are priced appropriately, what many advisors fail to understand when it comes to being business owners, and what firms everywhere should be doing to make advice more valuable. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/111 
February 5, 2019
My guest today transitioned from working over 70 hours per week to refining his practice to the point that he’s now only in the office for four months out of the year. Micah Shilanski is a partner with Shilanski & Associates, an independent RIA in Anchorage, Alaska that oversees nearly $130 million of assets under management for almost 160 client households. Focused on a niche of helping federal employees with their retirement benefits, the firm has streamlined its processes and increased efficiency to maintain Micah’s unique schedule while still growing 20% per year. In this episode, Micah shares how he’s managed to grow such a profitable practice despite his time out of the office, as well as the steps he’s taken to make the most of the time he does spend working at the firm. Listen in to learn how he sets client expectations about his unusual schedule from the very beginning, how he differentiates his practice to justify their above-average fees, and advice for any advisor who wants to improve his or her own efficiency at work. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/110
January 29, 2019
Jon Guyton sits at an interesting intersection of the advisor world. The founder of Cornerstone Wealth Advisors—an independent RIA that oversees $240 million in AUM for mostly retiree clients—Jon runs an advisory business that implements the very retirement strategies he researched and published a number of important and influential articles about in the mid-2000s. In this episode, Jon shares his unique approach to retirement planning, including how and why he separates out client retirement expenses into two distinct categories. Listen in to learn how he is applying his own research to the way he works with clients, the sustainable retirement income framework he utilizes in his practice, and how he went from qualifying for the low-income EIC tax credit in his first year of business to running an incredibly successful firm. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/109
January 22, 2019
My guest today is Lisa Kirchenbauer, founder and president of Omega Wealth Management. Lisa’s firm oversees more than $100 million of assets for nearly 100 affluent clients, with whom they’ve been able to form deep relationships by implementing George Kinder’s EVOKE life planning process. And yet, even with the close relationships Lisa has with her clients, she has achieved what most advisors consider impossible: taking two six-week sabbaticals in the past six years. In this episode, Lisa shares how she works with her staff to prepare the firm, train the team, and transition tasks so that she can step away from the business completely. Listen in to learn the steps she took to train her clients to become less dependent on her and more comfortable working with the other members of her team, how she breaks the news to clients about her taking time off, and the lessons she's learned throughout the experience that will change how she does her next sabbatical. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/108
January 15, 2019
Roger Whitney is a partner with WWK Wealth Advisors, an independent RIA where he works with a personal client base of retirees with $75 million of assets under management. Perhaps even more impressively, he’s been able to attract almost $50 million of those assets in just the past two years by launching a niche podcast on retirement. In this episode, Roger shares why and how he built his Retirement Answer Man podcast, as well as how he transitions listeners into prospects. Tune in to learn what makes his unique approach to retirement management so effective, what he’s doing to serve the subset of podcast listeners who are unlikely to hire him as their financial advisor, and advice for up-and-coming advisors who hope to follow a similar path to success. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/107
January 8, 2019
My guest today works with financial advisors to teach them how to handle a tricky area for a lot of firms: working with widows. Kathleen Rehl is a speaker, trainer, and researcher specializing in the particular challenges of widowhood and how advisors can be more effective in dealing with these issues. Also the author of Moving Forward on Your Own: A Financial Guidebook for Widows, Kathleen spent seventeen years working as a financial advisor before becoming a widow herself and shifting her focus to helping other women in similar circumstances. In this episode, she talks in depth about what advisors need to understand about helping widows through their financial transitions, as well as what to say and what not to say in the process. Listen in to hear how to avoid pushing the wrong financial issues after the death of a client’s spouse, tips for handling the three stages of widowhood, and what Kathleen’s research tells us about how financial planning affects widows’ outlook and confidence in their financial future. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/106
January 1, 2019
Chip Munn is the co-founder and managing partner of Signature Wealth, a hybrid wealth management firm on the Raymond James platform that has quickly gone from $300 million to over $1 billion of assets in just the past few years. With a focus on buying books of business from retiring advisors and handing them off to younger advisors, the firm’s tremendous growth comes not only from their unique acquisition strategy, but also from the particular set of freedoms an independent RIA has to try out different technology tools and marketing strategies. In this episode, Chip shares what it was like transitioning from a regional broker-dealer to the independent model, as well as the challenges and surprises he faced along the way. Listen in to hear how he has successfully built his firm by following his passion for helping out those new to the industry, his approach for positioning young lead advisors as part of a team to make transitioning clients comfortable, and why it’s so important to support advisory firms that have chosen the independent model. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/105
December 25, 2018
My guest today is here to help with one of the most common challenges we face as advisors: getting clients to actually follow through and implement our financial advice. The founder of Sage Financial Solutions, an organization that provides Financial Fitness Coach (FFC) and Accredited Personal Financial Coach (APFC) training and certification programs, Saundra Davis teaches advisors skills and techniques that will help clients make lasting behavior change. In this episode, Saundra shares how her approach of financial coaching differs from the typical approach of financial planning, as well as how it leads advisors to navigate the client discovery process in a substantively different way. Listen in to hear how both approaches complement each other, why it’s important to guide clients to making discoveries on their own rather than telling them the answers, and what we can do as advisors to not only give technically accurate advice, but also help clients to improve their financial behaviors. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/104
December 18, 2018
My guest today is here to talk about a kind of success that hasn’t been covered much on the podcast: building a career within a larger firm instead of going independent. Kathleen Kenealy is the Managing Director and Senior Wealth Advisor for Boston Private Wealth—a private bank and trust company that oversees nearly $8 billion of assets under management—and while she manages more than $300 million for seventy-five client households, she isn’t actually responsible for bringing in clients. Instead, she focuses her time on doing financial planning for the firm’s clients and improving the financial planning processes within the company, which recently earned her recognition as an InvestmentNews 40 under 40 honoree. In this episode, Kathleen opens up about what it’s like to work within a larger advisory firm that has separated out prospecting and business development from financial planning work, as well as how she’s been able to find job opportunities with companies that reward her for being a great financial planner without requiring her to find clients herself. Listen in to hear how she found her way into the financial planning world and navigated her unique career path, why she chose to work within larger firms rather than going out on her own, and where she plans to end up in the long run as she follows this corporate career path. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/103
December 11, 2018
There has been a lot of buzz over the past couple of years about the breakaway trend that has seen sizeable advisory firms moving away from wirehouses, and my guest today very recently went through that process himself. After spending the first decade of his career at Merrill Lynch, Michael Henley moved on to become co-founder and CEO of Brandywine Oak Private Wealth, an independent advisory firm that manages more than $500 million of client assets, at just thirty-four years old. In this episode, Michael shares what made him decide to go independent after he’d been so loyal to Merrill Lynch that he had a bull-shaped wedding cake, as well as how he handled the breakaway transition not quite going the way he expected. Listen in to hear what it was like for him to build an advisory firm in the wirehouse environment, the unique way he created the necessary startup capital to fund his transition, and how the grass is—and isn’t—greener in the independent channel. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/102 
December 4, 2018
My guest today comes from a different background than my usual guests, and she’s here to answer the fundamental question of why clients sometimes don’t take the advice we give them. Dr. Moira Somers is a clinical neuropsychologist who studies the complexities of how hard it is for people to change their behaviors, especially when it comes to money. Moira has applied her financial psychology expertise not just to consumers themselves, but also to teaching advisors how to better deliver advice in a way that actually sticks. In this episode, we discuss how patient compliance research from the medical field is being applied to help clients better adhere to financial advice, as well as how to assess whether someone is truly ready to apply what an advisor suggests. Listen in to learn why it’s unrealistic to expect even good-intentioned clients to always follow through on advice, why it’s important to measure client adherence, and specific steps advisors can take to improve the way they deliver advice in order to significantly increase the likelihood that it will be followed. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/101
November 27, 2018
Joe Duran is the founder and CEO of United Capital, a national independent RIA that oversees nearly $25 billion of assets under management and consistently ranks as one of the nation's fastest-growing wealth counseling firms. However, Joe doesn’t view his firm as being in the wealth management business; he sees it as being in the financial life management—or FinLife—business, because, as he puts it, the primary focus of the company is to help clients live richly, not die richly. In this episode, Joe opens up about the unique approach that has seen United Capital grow to more than $200 million of revenue in under 15 years, as well as what holds many advisors back from experiencing similar growth. Listen in to hear what he says is the secret to scaling an advisory business, the major shifts he predicts for the financial planning world, and his advice for new advisors coming into the industry today. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/100
November 20, 2018
As advisors, many of us have been taught that it’s a bad idea to discuss religion or politics with clients, but my guest today disagrees with this conventional wisdom. In fact, he has found that focusing on religion has actually been good for business. Rob West is the president of Kingdom Advisors, a membership organization that supports financial advisors who want to serve Christians as their niche market segment and boasts 70% growth over the last five years. In this episode, Rob shares how he has successfully integrated faith and finance into his business, from incorporating nearly 23,000 passages from the Bible about money and possessions into financial planning conversations with clients to developing a training program and supporting Certified Kingdom Advisor® designation to be “the gold standard for delivering biblically wise financial advice.” Listen in to hear how he has formed a niche in an underserved majority, and why combining your values with your work is important not only for differentiation, but also for finding purpose and significance in what you do. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/99
November 13, 2018
My guest today has not only gone against the conventional wisdom of never talking politics with clients, but he’s based his entire business on that very subject. Zach Teutsch is the founder of Values Added Financial, an independent RIA that focuses on working with progressive Democrats. And while this undoubtedly drives some prospects away, it has also quickly accelerated the growth of his firm, which has reached more than $300,000 in recurring retainer fees in less than 18 months. In this episode, Zach shares how picking a niche—even one based on politics—can actually be quite effective, as well as what he’s done to leverage this fact. Listen in to hear what kinds of clients he has been able to attract with his targeted messaging, how he’s created a pricing model specifically to fit his clientele, and how the way he’s structured his firm has gotten him to the point where he no longer has to choose between work that feels good and being financially successful. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/98
November 6, 2018
My guest today brings a very different perspective to the show, not just because of the clients she works with and how she runs her practice, but also because of her unusual path into the industry. After transitioning from working as a math teacher to offering financial coaching and counseling to doing financial planning work, Phuong Luong founded Just Wealth, a virtual, fee-only, hourly financial planning practice focused on working with younger clients who are still in the wealth-building phase of their careers. Having worked extensively with low-income individuals and people of color, Phuong has seen firsthand the racial and socioeconomic challenges that impact their ability to build wealth. In this episode, she shares how stereotypes about race and low-income individuals can become blocking points when it comes to giving them effective advice and helping them to reach their financial goals. Listen in to learn how many of the financial challenges people of color face can be traced back to past institutional and government policies, how this may be limiting the reach of financial planning to minority communities, and what we can do to help. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/97
October 30, 2018
Stephanie Bogan is a successful practice management consultant who teaches advisors how to run an advisory business as a business. After building and selling her first consulting firm, Stephanie has gone on to found a new one called the Limitless Adviser Coaching Program, not because she needed to do so, but as a way to have a greater positive impact on the advisor community. In this episode, Stephanie shares what she calls the seven pillars of building and running a successful advisory firm, as well as the important mindset shift that really creates business breakthroughs. Listen in to learn the common mental constructs that hold too many advisors back, the key to success and satisfaction with your advisory business, and how to execute your vision to turn it into reality. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/96
October 23, 2018
My guest today has seen what it’s like to build an advisory business and what it’s like to build a business for advisors. Previously a co-founder of IPS Advisor Pro—the first software for doing investment policy statements in a standardized way—Linda Lubitz Boone is now the founder of The Lubitz Financial Group, an independent RIA in that oversees nearly $250 million of AUM for 125 affluent clients. Yet, despite having reached a phenomenal level of success, Linda continues to proactively make changes to improve her advisory firm. In this episode, she shares how she continues to evolve her business, from the service providers she uses to support the business to the very business model itself. Listen in to learn why she decided to outsource her back office investment operations, how she is shifting her own role within the business, and what she's doing to build trust with her clients. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/95
October 16, 2018
Today’s guest has built a high-margin solo practice with quite an unusual structure. The founder of Bason Asset Management, James Osborne grew his advisory firm to over $225 million of AUM and nearly $400,000 of revenue by charging his clients a simple flat fee of $4,800—regardless of their assets. And he managed to do so by the age of thirty-five. In this episode, James shares why he decided not to follow the traditional AUM model, as well as the benefits of his flat-fee approach. Listen in to learn why he chose to build a business model that fits his personal lifestyle and family goals, why he isn’t working to gain more clients and hire staff, and what he plans to do in order to maintain his high-income lifestyle practice once he reaches his personal capacity. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/94 
October 9, 2018
My guest today has one of the most fascinating practices and niches in the advisor space. Sunit Bhalla is the founder of Oak Tree Financial Planning, a solo advisory firm that oversees more than $40 million in assets under management in a hyper-targeted niche of engineers. A former engineer himself, Sunit has been able to build nearly $300,000 in revenue—with an 85% profit margin—by working with just 17 affluent clients. In this episode, he shares how he built his highly efficient solo practice with a relentless focus on staying focused. Listen in to hear about his unique financial planning process, why he offers all his prospective clients just one comprehensive financial planning and investment management service, and what he says all advisors should focus on in order to maintain a healthy work-life balance. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/93
October 2, 2018
Today’s guest is an expert at operations and systems. Jennifer Goldman is the founder of an eponymous practice management consulting firm that works intimately with advisory firms on their operations, technology, workflows, and processes. After starting her career as a financial advisor and transitioning to operations leadership roles at two more advisory firms, Jennifer ultimately decided to go out on her own as a consultant. In this episode, Jennifer shares her personal journey to building her own consulting practice, as well as the important lessons she learned while scaling her business. Listen in to hear the key mentality shift she had to make in order to transform from an advisor to a business owner, what it really means to adopt and implement workflows and processes into an advisory firm, and why it’s so important for business owners to do just that in order to grow and scale their firms without losing themselves in the process. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/92
September 25, 2018
My guest today trains and coaches financial advisors on how to ask the right questions in order to have better conversations with clients. Mitch Anthony is the co-founder of ROLAdvisor, a coaching community that helps practices transform into Life-Centered Planning firms. With his truly unique gift for finding the right words for effective client conversations, Mitch describes the value of financial planning itself based on six principles that all advisors should take into account. In this episode, we talk about the real value that financial advisors provide, as well as the best way to communicate this to clients and prospects. Listen in to hear Mitch’s advice for effective client conversations, the problem with the traditional focus of benchmarking an advisor’s return on investments, and why he is more focused on providing what he calls a “return on life.” For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/91
September 18, 2018
My guest today has not only had a unique journey into the financial planning world, but she also brings a very different approach and perspective to the field. Julie Murphy is the founder and Chief Visionary Officer of JMC Wealth Management, a dual-registered advisory firm that serves more than 200 clients with $200 million of AUM—on top of generating nearly $300,000 a year in recurring planning fees. With financial conversations that are heavily focused around the intersections of money, our emotions, and our energy flow, Julie’s firm offers a distinctive focus on financial healing. In this episode, Julie shares how was able to accelerate her success and growth by doing what she calls “letting her freak flag fly” and simply being her authentic self. Listen in to hear how she’s allowing clients who are interested in what she has to offer to be drawn to her (rather than trying to advertise out to them), how she transitioned into doing only the things that make her happy in her business, and what she says is a critical component for people to be successful. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/90
September 11, 2018
My guest today has built one of the largest successful advisory businesses in the country. Ric Edelman is the founder and executive chairman of Edelman Financial Services, a mega-independent RIA with more than $22 billion in AUM, with 165 advisors serving 36,000 clients across 43 office locations from coast to coast. After starting out like any other financial advisor—selling mutual funds in the 1980s as an individual advisor—Ric has spent the last thirty years ultimately building a marketing machine that brought in a whopping 45,000 prospects to his firm last year alone. In this episode, Ric shares how he grew and scaled Edelman Financial over time, as well as how his marketing of the firm has evolved over the years. Listen in to hear why he considers it the firm’s job to bring in new clients (and the role of advisors to simply service those clients), how he would do things differently if he were starting fresh today, and advice for advisors who are thinking about or actively building a practice from scratch. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/89
September 4, 2018
Today we’re going to talk about a topic that makes many financial advisors cringe: sales. But despite the negative reaction many people within the industry have to this topic, my guest today is here to explain why “sales” actually isn’t a dirty word. Nancy Bleeke is the founder of Sales Pro Insider, a training platform for financial advisors that teaches how to better turn prospects into actual clients, and she’s here today to share how to take a comfortable and ethical approach to selling that really works. In this episode, Nancy shares her somewhat nontraditional sales training approach that simply focuses on having a structure to conversations with prospects to ultimately help them make a decision or take an action at the end. Listen in to hear her expert advice for how to talk to both prospects and clients using the WIIFT™ structure—which is both focusing on what’s in it for them and a five-step conversation process—the big mistakes many financial advisors make that scare away potential clients, and what it takes to increase both your comfort level and the comfort level of your prospects when it comes to selling. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/88
August 28, 2018
My guest today has had quite an unusual path through the industry. After building a successful practice at a wirehouse for the first 20 years of her career, René Nourse went independent so she could use the system she wanted to use to build with the type of clientele she wanted to serve. Now the founder of Urban Wealth Management—an independent RIA in the Los Angeles area that manages nearly $120 million of AUM for more than 200 clients—René is focused on serving her niche working with professional women. In this episode, she shares what it was like building her advisory practice in a wirehouse environment as both a woman and a minority, as well as the process she went through to break away from the wirehouse world and form her own independent RIA. Listen in to learn how she retained the trust of her clients after the shift, how she structures her own firm, and how she has used a digitally savvy marketing approach to grow her business to where it is today. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/87
August 21, 2018
Eric Roberge is the founder of Beyond Your Hammock, an independent RIA that specializes in financial planning services for high-income young professionals in their 30s and 40s. In just five years, Eric propelled his advisory firm from $0 to $300,000 of revenue with a unique marketing approach that's earned him a fair share of criticism along the way. In this episode, he shares how his unusual marketing process works, as well as why it serves as the ultimate differentiator for his business. Listen in to learn how he survived the early years of getting his practice off the ground, what he did to move away from the way advisory businesses typically operate, and how he ultimately figured out and attracted the exact type of client he wanted to serve by simply being himself. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/86
August 14, 2018
My guest today has been in the financial planning industry for 35 years, and has been incredibly active in the profession. In addition to serving as CEO of Yeske Buie, an independent RIA that manages nearly $750 million in AUM for 240 clients, Elissa Buie sits on the Cornerstone Advisory Board of the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia, serves as a Dean for FPA's Residency Program, and holds an appointment as Distinguished Adjunct Professor in Golden Gate University's Ageno School of Business. In this episode, Elissa shares what has kept her excited to remain in the field for all these years, as well as her firm’s unique way of leveraging next-generation talent. Listen in to learn how Yeske Buie uses a resident program to boost productivity, how things have evolved with the way advisors are trained and educated as professionals, and advice for new advisors coming into the field. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/85 
August 7, 2018
Diane Compardo is a partner and team leader at Moneta Group, an independent RIA with 40 partners and nearly $20 billion of assets under advisement. Now the leader of a 16-person team with four partners and $1.4 billion of AUA, Diane shifted gears after nearly two decades of building an incredibly successful advisory practice as a way to re-energize herself after a mid-career crisis. In this episode, she shares the details of her trailblazing career path to working her way up to partner, as well as what she did to pick herself up from the low point of her career. Listen in to hear the key lessons she learned over the years, how she maintains a healthy work-life balance, and advice for newer planners hoping to follow a similar path to success. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/84
July 31, 2018
My guest on today’s podcast shares my philosophy that the industry could use a little more transparency when it comes to broker-dealers, and he is working to make that happen. Jon Henschen is the president of Henschen & Associates, a recruiting firm that specializes in helping advisors find and match themselves to the right independent broker-dealer when making the switch to a new platform. In a segment of the industry that historically has thrived by keeping much of its compensation hidden with back-end commissions and markups, Jon’s willingness to be transparent is refreshing, to say the least. In this episode, he talks in depth about what advisors should know about the broker-dealer landscape these days. Listen in to learn how the independent broker-dealer recruiting model works, the differences in dynamic between larger and smaller firms, and what advisors need to know in order to pick the right broker-dealer for them. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/83
July 24, 2018
History always has a way of shedding light on current issues and giving us insight into the future. Ben Coombs was one of the first recipients of the CFP certification and having been involved in the growth and evolution of the financial planning industry, his insight and acquired wisdom is incredibly helpful. He talks about the early struggles of the industry and shares advice on how to advance your career while providing more valuable services to your clients. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/82 
July 17, 2018
My guest today has found an impressive balance between creating a successful advisory firm and giving back to his community. Louis Barajas is the founder of Wealth Management LAB, a multi-family, office-style advisory firm that specializes in providing financial advice and business manager services to entertainers and other celebrities in the Latino community. The first Latino minority to join the National Board of the Financial Planning Association over a decade ago, Louis built his advisory firm over time, from trying to serve Latino small business owners in the barrio where he grew up to writing books and teaching financial literacy to the Latino and broader communities. In this episode, Louis shares the stages of his unique path into financial planning that culminated in him starting his own solo practice, as well as how he stayed positive and overcame the setbacks he faced along the way. Listen in to learn how Louis built his success by focusing not on financial planning but on what he calls financial doing, the immutable laws that everyone in his firm follows, and what he says is the key to expanding financial advice to a broader range of underserved consumers. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/81 
July 10, 2018
My guest on today’s podcast has grown his niche practice of serving physicians and retirees to nearly $70 million in assets under management and $800,000 of revenue in just eight years. Matthew Blocki is a 30-year-old financial advisor who built his financial-planning-centric business by starting out at Northwestern Mutual and quickly evolving from nearly 100 transactional insurance clients per year to a hyper-focused practice that’s aiming to grow with just 15 affluent clients per year instead. In this episode, Matthew shares how he got started and survived in the early years of building his practice from scratch, as well as how he differentiated himself as a 20-something advisor working with retirees. Listen in to hear what helped shape his career in the beginning, how his practice and focus have changed over the years, and what it takes to come out exponentially ahead in your business. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/80
July 3, 2018
My guest today has built her practice to more than $250,000/year of recurring financial planning fees in just her first three years—and she did it while also starting a family. The founder of FIT Advisors, Anjali Jariwala provides financial investment and tax planning advice for young physicians and small business owners in their thirties for an annual retainer fee that starts at $10,000/year. Working entirely virtually with clients, her firm has achieved impressive growth, due in major part to focusing in on a niche from the start, which allowed the firm to pursue unique marketing channels that most other financial advisors don’t use. In this episode, Anjali shares how she positioned her advisory firm squarely in the niche of serving independent physicians and similar small business owners by leveraging her background as a CPA and a CFP certificate, as well as how she iterated her business model very rapidly in the first few years until she eventually eliminated all the upfront fees and just raised her ongoing retainer instead. Listen in to learn how she structures her upfront and ongoing planning meetings with clients, how she balanced her work life with her home life after having her first baby barely a year after the launch of the firm, and how she reinvested into and restructured her staff support to be able to continue serving her clients during her time off. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/79
June 26, 2018
My guest today brings a unique discussion to the podcast, as well as a fascinating history with an organization that a lot of advisors aren’t necessarily familiar with, but can surely learn from when it comes to really listening to the clients you’re serving. Charlotte Beyer is the founder and former CEO of the Institute for Private Investors, a private networking organization for ultra-high-net-worth investors and advisors who serve them. After building a new category of community group twenty-five years ago—in a space where people said it couldn’t be done—Charlotte now has a highly successful business and an in-depth understanding of the unique challenges and concerns of her particular client base. In this episode, she shares her impressive professional journey as she built a series of conferences and networking events in an online community for ultra-high-net-worth individuals before the world of social media and online communities, as well as insights from her recently updated book, Wealth Management Unwrapped. Listen in to learn how the needs and concerns for people of high net worth differ from those of other clients advisors serve, what Charlotte sees as the future of working with ultra-high-net-worth investors, and lessons any advisor can draw from regarding the importance of adapting what you offer to fit what your specific clients really want and need. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/78
June 19, 2018
Tanya Rapacz is the co-founder of The Partnership Resource, a unique business in the industry that does facilitation and mediation for advisory firm partners. Given her own experience working as a financial advisor—as well as her experience with a partnership merger that didn’t work out—Tanya understood the challenges that can arise from partnerships even before she was trained in dispute resolution mediation. In this episode, she talks in depth about what it takes for a partnership to work. Listen in to hear details about Tanya’s process for working with financial advisor partners to facilitate healthy communication and conflict resolution, the surprising truth about what kinds of people make the best business partners, and key areas that should be worked out early on for a partnership to be successful. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/77
June 12, 2018
My guest today brings a truly unique perspective to the financial planning world. In addition to being an associate professor in the financial planning program at Kansas State University, Kristy Archuleta is a licensed marriage and family therapist. Her background as a trained psychologist means she understands how to help clients improve their financial behaviors in a way that isn’t typically seen with advisors. In this episode, Kristy shares the details of the work she does at the intersection of financial planning and financial therapy, as well as why—according to the best practices research of therapists themselves—the typical advisor approach is actually not a good way to get people to change their financial behaviors for the better. Listen in to hear what she says makes clients more likely to implement financial planning advice, why she anticipates that financial therapy will eventually become a specialization path for financial planners, and more. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/76
June 5, 2018
Kathy Longo is the president and founder of Flourish Wealth Management, an advisory firm in the Minneapolis area that oversees nearly $130 million of AUM for 61 affluent clients. Surprisingly, Kathy chose to start this firm after successfully climbing the partnership track ladder to become one of the next generation successor owners of an independent RIA worth over $1 billion. In this episode, Kathy shares what led to her choosing to leave a successful firm to pursue her own entrepreneurial goals, as well as the challenges she faced in doing so. Listen in to hear how she has grown her business, why it’s so important to find study groups of peers and colleagues, and the crucial philosophy she says all small business owners should embrace. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/75 
May 29, 2018
Today’s guest brings a unique perspective to the show. Not many financial advisor coaches have experience actually being an advisor, but Diane MacPhee is one of the few who understands both sides of the divide. Now the founder of DMAC Consulting Services—a financial advisor coaching and practice management consulting firm—Diane spent over fifteen years as a fee-only financial advisor herself.  In this episode, Diane shares the common challenges of being a successful solo financial advisor, as well as the self-limiting beliefs we sometimes inflict on ourselves that prevent us from growing and being as successful as we could be. Listen in to hear her tips for how to deal with the feeling of overwhelm that can come with growing your business, how to avoid becoming a bottleneck in your own practice, and what she says is the key to financial advisors achieving continued success. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/74
May 22, 2018
My guest today is well known in the financial services industry as a true creative force. Sheri Fitts is the founder of ShoeFitts Marketing—a marketing consulting firm for financial advisors—and the Chief Marketing Officer for Sheridan Road Advisors—a Chicago-area advisory firm with nearly $13 billion in AUM. With more than 25 years of industry experience, Sheri specializes in crafting unforgettable marketing strategies that really stand out. In this episode, she shares her journey from working a traditional corporate job to going out on her own as an independent consultant, as well as the key marketing concepts that have helped her get to where she is today. Listen in to hear Sheri’s take on how to leverage and maximize marketing ideas, the fundamental difference between sales and marketing, and what advisory firms need to cultivate in order to succeed. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/73 
May 15, 2018
Today’s guest lives in a very interesting space that is becoming a bit of a hot trend in the industry these days. Dave DeVoe is the founder of DeVoe & Co., a practice management consulting firm for RIAs with a focus on business valuation succession planning and facilitating mergers and acquisitions of advisory firms. After his time leading the Schwab Advisor Services Mergers & Acquisitions program—and now working as an independent consultant who runs one of the industry’s leading deal book tracking studies on financial advisor M & A activity—Dave has a deep history in consulting on and tracking the trends of advisory firm mergers and acquisitions and the value of firms themselves. In this episode, Dave talks about the mechanics of advisory firm deals from the buyer’s perspective, including the main considerations that go into valuation. Listen in to hear his expert perspective on the buyer and seller trends in the industry, the flaws in the traditional 2x revenue valuation estimate for a firm, and why he sees it as both a buyer’s market and a seller’s market right now. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/72
May 8, 2018
Peggy Ruhlin, CFP board member and CEO of Budros, Ruhlin and Roe, joins us on the show to share her experience and financial planning journey. She goes into depth about her firms unique process that ensures all clients get the same treatment and experience. Peggy gives us the details of what they offer regarding planning and investment services and talks about how their clients actually requested they get more involved in the investment area. For show notes and more visit: https://www.kitces.com/71
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