I am surprised that clients don’t ask for letters of recommendation more often. References really help to understand who the advisor is and how clients have been treated over longer periods of time. Everyone has an opinion, and three references should do the trick. The references should be from different types of clients too – possibly one from a retiree, one a non-profit or one from a family that is in the midst of long-term planning. We encourage getting real life feedback because with reputations at risk, be assured that the substance of the reference is usually excellent.
This week’s Masters Golf Tournament is by far the most prestigious and cherished event in the golfing world. Winning the Masters is life changing and incredibly fruitful for the professional golfer in so many ways. You can make nearly $2 million in prize money, get a five-year exemption on the tour, a lifetime invite to the annual Champion’s dinner and amazing sponsorship opportunities inside and outside golf. Rarely do first-time participants win, however. It takes years of experience to get to the point where you can come even close to winning the tournament. There are many documented instances where talented players have failed because of nerves, careless mistakes or playing too aggressively. In one rare case – one player was disqualified after signing an incorrect score card! Investing success takes a long time too. Investing is an art and a science – somewhat like golf actually – because it requires a combination of skill, planning and patience.
When I was young and in the
process of changing jobs, whenever I considered making a speculative investment
or wanted to buy something frivolous, my father would say to me “you have to
pay to learn!” It has taken me many years to figure out what he meant by that.
We get asked all the time: What is the best way to teach kids about money? The answer to this question is: slowly – because it takes a long time to get it right. It is different for each family and for each child. We observe that some kids have the embedded sense of how to make money, save it, keep track of it, and how to spend it. Others think that money “grows on trees” and that there is an endless supply of it. Everyone is different.