Keys to Successful Wealth Management: Longevity, Regular Progress Checks and a Good Banking Relationship
Wealth management is an ongoing process.
According to Doug Myers, Chicago Private Client Market Leader with Associated Bank, putting together a plan for managing wealth means ascertaining client desires for the future.
"I think you have to sit down and have a long-term conversation with where they want to be, what are their goals?," Myers said. "And when we sit down with our clients and prospects and talk about financial planning, (we ask) what are your goals for the next 10, 15, 20, 30 years. And we try to match our portfolio structure with their goals. Certainly people are struggling every day now with not only paying their bills but trying to put away for college funds, for their future, for healthcare costs, which is an unknown for all of us. So the financial planning process is very important."
Part of that process is ensuring a balanced and diversified portfolio.
Putting all your eggs in one basket is rarely the way to go. Likewise, putting all your dollars in one sector is typically not the wisest decision either, Myers notes.
"I think when you have a balanced portfolio of different sectors of the stock market, in bonds, both short term and long term, and components of cash, you've got a balanced fund that's going to be diversified enough to maybe ride the waves of the stock market …," Myers said. "It's going to be very volatile (at times), I think. We live in uncertain times, … and I think people are generally uncertain about what's happening in the world and we try to say 'ok let's have a plan, stick to it' and be very calm and try to make sure we have a balanced portfolio to weather the storm so to speak."
Sometimes news and world events can cause clients to worry. Myers and his team seek to allay those worries.
Slow and steady could be a good motto for weathering uncertainties that might arise.
"… I think it's just when people plan for their future, it's hard to plan when you have these (different, unforeseen) situations going on in the world," Myers said. "On the financial side – on the financial planning side and financial counseling (side) – I think you have to sit down with people and say 'the world is a volatile place, but let's get back to the basics and let's figure out a plan, a financial plan that can weather the storm.' And that's what we spend a lot of time with talking to our clients."
Monitoring means annual check-ins.
"We do that on a regular basis," Myers said. "Annually we like to sit down with our clients and reevaluate. It's interesting, because if you look at all the investing sectors – you have real estate for example, you have large cap stocks, you have small cap stocks, mid cap, cash components, bonds. So a lot goes into portfolios and every year, if we look at returns on each one of these sectors it's different. One year you've got global stocks outperforming domestic stocks. The next year they might be last place and you've got small cap versus large cap outperforming each other."
That regular pulse check enables Myers' team to help people change course, if needed.
"Every year I think you do need to sit down based on your prediction of what's going to happen and that's what it is, it's predictions and an educated analysis and reevaluate where you are," Myers said. "I think that's a large part of our discussions in sitting down with people annually and figuring out 'where do we want to be for the next year.' And rebalancing is a very important concept in investment management."
Myers' team is structured specifically to bring the most benefit to clients.
"The team consists of an investment manager, we have a trust and (an) estate attorney looking at your trust and estate plan; we have bankers on the team, we have a wealth management person who's bringing it all together for a person," Myers said. "I think that's very important when you're looking at surrounding yourself and surrounding a client with the team concept. …That's very important to us and I think our clients depend on that. They depend on various levels of expertise that we all bring to the table when you're looking at financial planning and wealth management."
Investment management, fiduciary, administrative and planning services are provided by Associated Trust Company, N.A. ("ATC"). Investment management services are also provided to ATC by Kellogg Asset Management, LLC® ("KAM"), a SEC-registered investment adviser. ATC is a wholly owned subsidiary and affiliate of Associated Bank, N.A. ("AB"). AB is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Associated Banc-Corp ("AB-C"). KAM is a wholly owned subsidiary and affiliate of ATC. AB-C and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. Please consult with your tax, legal or accounting advisors regarding your individual situation.
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