Speaker: Curtis May, Financial Strategist, Practical Wealth Advisors LLC
How do you feel Personal Financial Snapshot has helped you as it relates to your confidence?
Curtis May: Yeah, I feel that uh, as far as my confidence goes with the Personal Financial Snapshot, it helps in so many different ways. You know you have a tractor run on where you're not uhh leaving anything to chance. You can, you, uh, it's cool because, you know that you're thorough and nobody else really does what we do, you, you're confident because you're, if you act the more you do it, you know, confidence comes from competence and so, and when you're confident you'll make money, okay? And so there's no, there's no shortcut to that. So you have to do the work. But what happens is if you've got a system that works, all wealth is created is a product of system. So we have, I always feel that you have to have something to say, uh, that, you know, works, that, you know, can't hurt people. And so that's what, that's the confidence that the system gives me, that, that they're better off for having met me, as long as I stay on the path with them and walk them through the process. And that's a good thing.
How have the Five Principles and the Personal Financial Snapshot software helped you with your clients?
Curtis May: So, after the principles have helped it's funny, when I first got exposed to software, I thought it was about the software, right? And it's really not. The software is just something that we use to organize the thoughts. But it's really about the principles right? Uh you know uh saving maximum protection um for replacement of income at death Uh liquidity, six or 12 months of liquidity and velocity. And so what's powerful about that is that principles don't change. And so what do we do? We teach principles that help our clients become and remain financially free. And so if you will start to look at how wealth is created, you know? And so what it does is it is uh we teach it, you know, and you gotta you gotta keep reminding them. But um you give them a format to think through stuff, right? So as as things happen, uh they start to stack on each other, right? So if you don't save, you don't have any liquidity, right? If you don't save and you don't have any money and you have a major capital purchase or you have an emergency, if you don't have savings, you have to go into debt. So they you know, uh or with protection you could what could happen. You could live too long. You could die too soon. You can get sick, you get sued. So I called principal to playing defense right? So you have to play defense and see what happens is uh it's helped me uh kind of lay a foundation to make sure that they have a bulletproof personal economy. Um and and sort of walked in through that the same way uh every time and then always have uh something or for them back to and also um I'm getting into the second year where I'm starting to do reviews and I think that's where the magic will happen because now if they implement then what we'll start to see what what I'm starting to see is um uh they are better off because we set, you know, certain things in place, you know, wealth capture account, making sure your savings. So if they're saving um and putting on automatic pilot like we teach in principle one, then they're going to have more liquidity than they had when we met them. And then when we when we update their their data is tangibly they're better off and more efficient and more velocity going on with their money, they're more knowledgeable. And as your knowledge goes up, their anxiety goes down because they're right now, most people have a clients have a ceiling of complexity, right? So our job as advisors is to raise their ceiling and there with money, they just don't know how stuff works or a lot of what they think they know is not true. So that's that's what the principles too, it just gives them a track to run on and uh yeah that's that's that's how I feel about it
Why do you feel being principles-based gives you an edge in the financial planning world?
Curtis May: Yeah, the, I think the principles give you an edge professionally because in business you have to have a unique selling proposition, right? Why? You know, and so you have people to answer the question, why should I work with you versus any and all other choice I have, including doing whatever I'm doing now or doing nothing? And to me, if you don't have a process, you're a commodity, you just, you know, you're, you're selling products and what people are tired of being sold stuff. So what happens is if you walk them through a process now, if you focus on the process, the process will sell a lot of products, but people, you know, they don't buy insurance, you know, and you know, they need all that stuff, but people don't do what they need to do. They do what they want to do. And so once you teach them the principles, They want to do it, they want maximum coverage. They will maximum protection right on their life insurance for example, they want an umbrella policy, they want to save 15, of their income. They, you know, they, I want to be more confident and more in control over their finances. So, and um, we always say, we're, or I always say I'm a financial educator. Well, the way the way Kyle teaches the process, you know, the root word of educate is do say latin root, which is to draw out and so our process is really all about questions. So you've got to find out what people want and then if you'll ask them the right questions. um you know, they'll kind of paint the road for you and just help people get what they want. And so the it gives me an edge because I don't really, when I sit down a person, I don't really I have principles that I want to help them install, but I don't have any, I don't go into a meeting with preconceived, "Here is the product of the day that I'm going to sell you." And that's very freeing because it's uh you really can focus on listening, asking them questions and listening to them and and basically helping them get what they want. Which is really are our job. And so that that's the edge because you gotta have something to say that separates you from everybody else. Now, even if people are doing this, nobody else is you, right? And so people by you and the relationship and but so if you have a way to say it, you're going to say it differently. Then I say it If you're if you're listening this because your style is different. But you can't change it. Okay? Uh you know, you have to learn it and then make it you, all right? And that's work. But guess what? You know, it's uh it's work to... So here's the thing. So, we are dealing with something that's very important which is our client's money in their families and their livelihood. And it's a big deal, it's a big responsibility. So, I think that if we can teach people principles that help them become and remain financially free, financially free what? Passive income, greater expenses that is our objective see, that's different because most people's objective is assets under management. Well, okay, that's a business metric for the advisor. But one of the things that it gives us an edge, I believe, is that how do we measure success? That's what you gotta ask yourself. So, are we measuring success to assets under management? Or, are we measuring success through how many clients this year did we get on the road to financial freedom? You know, how well are they doing? That's the key!
How has the book, Principles-Based Planning, helped you as a financial advisor, and your clients?
Curtis May: So, the book has been phenomenal for me. I, I more so with me. Um I uh I'm just starting to give the clients as I record this, but uh if you, I wish I had the book with me, I'm I'm at a conference right now in a hotel room, but I um if you saw my book, it's marked up. I've got uh tabs in it and it is seriously a reference book of of just, you have to like when you do this, you have to dig in. And so it's helped me to uh be a better communicator of the principles, you know, trying to make sure I live the principles um and be what I call a master copy. And uh it's it's uh it's it's phenomenal and then now what I'm doing is I'm giving it to them kinda, I'm gonna start doing it before, but after we finished, so they can start to, you know, here is what we went through and um because it's helpful to understand because one of the things is that their clients are inundated with so much noise of what I call the Accumulation Theory, right? Or what we call in the system of Accumulation Theory. So, how do you combat that noise? And and so one of the things is that they have to always tell people is your money, it's not Curtis' money. So I'm the guy that can't be more important to me than it is to you. So, you know, you're going to read some stuff, you're going to do some homework because you have to be able to um no why you're doing what? And so most of them will forget pieces of it. So if you can give them uh what I call third party validation of book. Um it helps sink in, it helps your retention and uh that that's what it's done for me. So for me it's helped me have a learning track to run on so I can be confident in what I'm saying and um and as I give the book out now, the book becomes a textbook. So if they're having a question, you know? All right, well listen let's let's go to chapter three and let's let's talk about that. And it gives you content for uh you know follow up meetings or lessons or you know what I call a client, um CE, Client Continuing Education meetings that you should be doing. And um monthly and quarterly. And so the book gives you a lot of fodder for that.
(for PFS Specialists) How has the PFS Specialist mentoring and training program been beneficial to you?
Curtis May: So, I think the Specialist Program uh, for advisors is kind of unique in the marketplace where you actually, uh, so you get to learn the system, You get study groups where you can interact with other people, uh, in your peer group learning how to do it. Uh what's unique is that your, you call allows you to observe meetings, right? And of of the trainers, right? You can sit in, you know, you gotta sign your N. D. A. And then you actually get a lot of meetings. So it's not theory. Okay. You're watching it done, you're seeing how the clients respond, You're seeing there the trust being transferred to what you're doing. And so I think that's, I think that's very unique and I think it builds confidence because one of the things, you know, it seems like a lot of stuff, but you know, because every agents think you need. It's all about the product, right? And it's not about the product, it's about the client. And so you can never master all the products. You can master the client conversation. So if you will do that and the process is a really good fact. Fine. So if I have an annuity or disability or you know, probably next year I'll run into advanced market cases. Guess what? I know the client, I know all this stuff. And so once I know that I can call the product manufacturer, the companies and hey, you know, I think this might be a good fit for this. What do you think about that? How does it work or can you get on the phone explained to my client? Because I'm the lead dog. I'm the lead advisor. Right. And so I think that also, so once you go through, you start to see that, then you know, that you can, you should have the confidence that you are the financial quarterback, so to speak and um, and you can help them build their team out. And I think the mentoring in the confidence that I know that I received through going through this now, you can't go at it half. But it like I dove in like 100% and just took my lumps and it was like Tiger changing his swing, okay? And uh, but that was, that's, that's, that's powerful. So if you're gonna do it and you want to really have a successful career, uh, you know, I can't think everything better than that, that you could do with your time and money.