Working With a Financial Planner

“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”

~ Benjamin Franklin

People often ask, “What’s it like working with a financial planner?  Do I really need one?”  Great questions.  I will attempt to address both.  When you work with one of Emerald Spectrum’s financial planners, you should expect a comprehensive approach.  At Emerald Spectrum, we are committed to delivering “an extraordinary planning experience.”  We help you create a financial plan that allows you see the big picture and set long and short-term life goals -- a crucial step in mapping out your financial future.  This process can help secure your financial wellbeing and offer you peace of mind as you navigate your financial life.

Working with a financial planner is similar to a visit with a doctor.  We start in a Discovery Phase- understanding your financial history and helping you organize all the financial aspects of your life.  This phase typically involves taking an inventory of your assets and considering how those assets are positioned, which includes a full review of your current investments and asset allocation. 

 Next, we begin the Planning Phase.  Similar to a doctor delivering a prognosis, we help define your short- term and long-term goals and formulate a plan that will best position you and your family to meet those goals.  We make a commitment to help you define everything you are trying to accomplish in your financial life and chart a path to success.  We also access your risk exposure.  Are you over insured? Under insured? Do you have a plan in place to address concerns as you age? Are your children or your parents going to be a liability in retirement? Are you properly diversified among asset classes? What are your biggest fears?  The end result of the Planning Phase is a comprehensive plan of attack.  We discuss steps we may need to take to ensure you are well positioned to reach your immediate needs and lifetime goals. 

 The next phase, Implementation, involves putting in place recommendations as well as ongoing maintenance.  This is similar to the treatment phase in the medical profession.  We help you prioritize what needs to be “treated” and create a timeline for implementing your financial plan.  We work together to help you stay on track to meet your goals.

At Emerald Spectrum, we are continually repeating these phases with our clients in light of changes in their lives and changes in market dynamics. Financial planning is an ongoing process designed to help you achieve your dream life. 

In our recent article in Forbes, we described the power of working with a financial planner...


"You only have one chance to get this right.  People often make financial decisions, including decisions on their investments, without having a plan for what they want to accomplish. We compare that to moving to a new city without knowing where you will live. You might find a place to sleep, but with a plan and the help of a professional, you give yourself the chance to pursue your dream life.”  

To address the question, “Do I really need a financial planner?” I will share one of my favorite quotes on the topic. 

“Most people need a planner.  The ones that don’t need one are usually smart enough to use one.”
~ Loren Dunton

When you work with a financial planner, you benefit from collective wisdom. Your personal financial journey is filled with complexity, and walking alone breeds fear and uncertainty. Those feelings result in bad decision making. Having a partner along the way ensures you thoroughly consider your options and are always prepared to make education, informed decisions. When you consider the expertise we offer in investment management and tax planning, the decision is even clearer! We would love to help you take the first step.