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401(k) Advisors – The New Breed

I shouldn’t write this blog post, this is going to make some people mad…oh screw it, here is my artistic, smashed together grammatical failure and rant of the vibe I think many Financial Advisors give to the general public:

“I-am-an-investment-professional-I-love-making-money-check-me-out-in-my-black(sometimes navy)suit-&-tie-look-and-my-creative-personality-showing-cufflinks-I-use-big-fancy-words-and-understand-wealth-and-wealth-creation-in-ways-you-never-will-I-steeple-my-hands-when-at-the-conference-table-golf-is-my-sport-and-I-still-think-powerpoint-is-cool-fox-news-is-my-channel-I-am-responsible-conservative-can-order-a-great-bottle-of-wine-comfortable-at-any-country-club-and-drive-a-mercedes-or-bmw-my-corner-office-has-sports-memorabilia-and-there-is-a-WSJ-in close-proximity-I-love-money–I-proudly-display-my-laser-engraved-acrylic-awards(even though every one of them is from some vendor with a sales quota)and-still-hang-one-of-those-motivational/success-quote-framed-art-poster-things-with-some-mountain-or-pole-vaulter-on-it-my-website-has-a-compass-and/or-old-people-holding-hands-walking-on-the-beach-I-wear-khakis-on-casual-fridays-and-even-tuck-my-polo-shirt-in-while-wearing-a-belt-on-the-weekends-did-I-mention-that-I-love-money?”

I think I just offended quite a few people, I sincerely apologize. I’m not trying to be a dick. The last thing I want to do is judge other people and it should be noted that I personally love golf and consider myself republican…but back to my point…this charade of copy-cat investment professional clones is coming to an end.

It’s finally happening people! The 401(k) Industry is changing. It has a fresh face and a new enthusiasm. It’s got personality and individualistic charisma (that’s a combo of words I just made up).

I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I am for this change. Why do I love this so much? Well first of all it had to change…studies have shown that when it comes to trust the Financial Services industry is one of the worst, ranking even worse than a car salesman. Ouch! In addition, I don’t think the brand matches the product. More and more these days I see a Retirement Plan Industry chalked full of Advisors and Industry Pros that are passionate for their craft, inspired to create positive change and unique/varied in their approach…basically they are nothing like my little rant at the top of this post.

Let me give you some examples. Adrian Kierans is crushing it with video on LinkedIn, check out this recent one where he talks about love as a 401k plan solution and utilized some rock star editing. Financial Advisor Skyler Stokes is tying his love for the beach and environment into his 401(k) practice, Sheri Fitts is an Industry Pro pushing limits with vulnerability, authenticity and cowboy boots. Hell, I recently learned that Aaron Pottichen and Alex Assaley are on a NAPA Young Advisor Top Secret Group (I made that name up, it’s actually called the NAPA NextGen Committee) working to diversify and push the norms of our industry…WTF? How cool is that?

Plan Sponsors and their participants are going to be the benefactors of this new world. The process of hiring a new Plan Advisor will resemble a kid in a candy store, so many different options and all of them sweet and tasty. Except for this candy wont give you cavities, instead the end result will be positive plan outcomes.  In my opinion, these New Advisors are fueled by their passion, creativity and expertise…which means real results and new solutions that were never thought of before… that will be what they deliver.

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