I’ve just returned from a girl’s weekend vacation with a group of 5 friends who I have known for ages, a few going back as far as elementary school. Now we share pictures of grandkids who are about the same age as when some of us first met. Since I’m the number cruncher, I got the task of tallying up the tip and dividing the bill when we went out for a meal, and when the conversation turned to buying new homes or college costs, I was always asked to weigh in with my “professional opinion.”
Even before becoming a financial planner, I was the finance geek in our group. I’ll never forget the first year my best friend and I got jobs and our first W2s. My father, an accountant, sat us both down and gave us a lesson on how to complete the 1040 EZ tax form. I was hooked! My friend, on the other hand, was not enjoying it one bit, and her eyes glazed over.
To this day, almost thirty years later, I still do her tax form each year. We’ve made it a ritual that it gets done on her birthday so we can go out afterwards to celebrate her expected tax refund. I get a lot of pleasure from helping my friends with their personal financial situations, and they know I don’t have any hidden agenda as I’d never try to sell them anything.
I get that same fulfillment from my professional career as a financial educator with Financial Finesse, but that hasn’t always been the case. After that first lesson in tax prep from my dad, that set me on a career path, first in banking and then into the financial services industry. What I found in addition to getting to help clients reach their financial goals was quotas for selling annuities, life insurance, and high cost mutual funds. I would sometimes go home after a long day at the office and feel bad that what I had recommended that day was quite often more for my next paycheck than in the best interest of the client.
So 8 years ago, I was fortunate to be able to become a financial coach instead of a financial salesperson. I could help people transform their finances without the expected sales pitch. At that point, “financial wellness” was not even a well-known term, but Financial Finesse was leading the industry by providing unbiased workplace financial education.
What a breath of fresh air for me! I am now able to share my many years of knowledge and experience with budgeting, investing, real estate, and of course, my passion with taxes to thousands of individuals through individual consultations, webcasts, and on-site workshops, and my days are always fulfilling. Never again will I have to worry about going home and wondering if I did the best thing for a client because I know every day I am helping someone towards their financial goals, and maybe that someone could be you.