Patrick N. Sommerfield, CFA, President, CFO
We will work with you to develop, implement and monitor a strategy tailored to your specific short- and long-term goals in two areas of personal finance: Financial Planning and Investment Management. During the first year of a client relationship, we typically cover all major areas of financial planning analysis. This is done in order of importance to the client and the client’s situation, and allows for time-sensitive issues to be addressed immediately. Over the course of several meetings, clients become more grounded in their financial situation, at which point new issues may emerge. As we work together with our clients, we will adapt and refresh plans and planning work as needed. In addition, we routinely check in on all the major financial planning areas of clients’ lives, depending on the level of importance that each area has for that particular client.
Brenda Feinberg, Portfolio Accountant
It starts with a conversation. We set up an appointment for you to talk with one of our team members over the phone to discuss how we might work together. If we both think it makes sense, we then schedule a complimentary in-person meeting at our office with an advisor. If someone suggested that you call us, tell us who it is – we love to say thank you!
Working with an independent advisor has many benefits including a more personalized service focused on each client's unique needs, goals, and situation. Our work encompasses both investment management and financial planning and is centered on guiding clients in decision-making.
To illustrate what a customized experience with a financial professional is like, we find that it’s helpful to outline the client experience from introduction to ongoing work.
Kelly H. Herian, Operations Specialist
Our first conversation is about getting to know each other. We usually start with a phone call to determine if we will bring value to your situation and are a good fit for your needs. If the answer is yes, we schedule an in-person meeting with an advisor. Even if we’re not the right fit for you, we strive to provide options for potential next steps so you can maintain the momentum needed to move forward.
The second conversation is a deeper dive into the specifics of your financial situation with one of our lead advisors. We’ll cover things like the types of investments you need managed, what your long-term goals are (and not just the financial ones), and what financial issues are of the most concern. At the end of this meeting, we hope that you’ll have enough information to make a confident decision, even if that means choosing not to work with us at this time. Of course, we’ll be available for any questions that do pop up after the meeting. If you decide that we’ll be a good partner in your financial decision-making, it’s time to make it formal.
Kelly S. Mesarich, Operations Manager | Portfolio Accounting Manager
Launching our Investment Process
Here’s where we really kick off our work together! We’ll answer any questions and review your areas of concern as well as the core areas of planning we like to assess for clients. A calendared plan will emerge of what analysis may be needed, and how to best prioritize and sequence the work.
We will then discuss the specific changes we’ll make as we transition your assets into our care. Our desired outcome for the meeting will be to come to a joint agreement about the initial investment positioning that we’ll put into place.
Signing the Documents
After our discussion and your questions are answered, your lead advisor and client service manager will walk you through formal document signing to initiate our partnership, and authorize our work on your behalf. In addition, we’ll collect key biographical information that informs our work together – not only regarding the expected data points of accounts, assets, and income, but also the personal and family information that guides estate planning and beneficiary designation.
In addition, you’ll complete and sign several documents:
Jason S. Lacey, CFA, CFP®, Executive Vice-President
After these initial phases, our work will take on a natural rhythm with regularly scheduled check-ins, quarterly portfolio reviews, quarterly reporting, and economic commentary. And we’re always available for any new developments because we know that life can change rapidly and that’s exactly when you need a partner the most.