What is your background, and how did you get into investing?
I had a Business degree and started a career in HR. People kept asking how to do their budgets and I realized not everyone knows how to do budgets. Later, I thought, there’s got to be more to finance than just budgets. I took classes to become a Certified Financial Planner and became interested in that field. HR started to seem really boring and I never looked back. I opened up my own financial practice 1990.
Were you successful initially, or did you have problems at first? How did you keep motivated and pushing forward?
I decided early on, to gain clients, I was going to do four speeches or workshops on a monthly basis. This was the best way for me to get out there and get referrals. I did this for three years. It took commitment. It took perseverance. At the time, I was the main wage earner for my family so that was significant motivation to keep going.
As the practice grew and became successful I started feeling bad that there wasn’t a way to take care of investors that didn’t have millions. So again, through perseverance and commitment I created a way for those with smaller portfolios ($50K and over) to invest. I launched a website to help these investors because I believed that small investors should have options too. The site has now been live for almost five years.
Do you have any secrets for balancing being a mom with being a great financial professional?
I think the key is getting a support system. Find someone to mow the lawn, someone to clean the house. As mothers and professional business people, we think we need to do it all but we really can’t. I was committed to balance from the very beginning. I realized I needed to take things off my plate. I can mow the lawn, but if I’m outside doing that, I’m not inside scheduling my next workshop. I created the support system I needed which allowed me to do what I’m best at. It’s all about delegation – you can’t do it all.
What advice would you give to a busy mom who is interested in learning how to trade stocks?
Go to the internet. There’s been an explosion of online courses over the past few years. Look for courses in financial planning. Or, check out your community college, an experimental college, or investment clubs. If you’re starting from square one, just google “investing education” and there’s a plethora of information about where to start.
What keeps you going and motivated?
My clients. I love my clients. They are wonderful people and I really want to take care of them. Next: my staff. They do excellent work every day and we work as a team. It’s a joy to come to work if you love your clients, and love the people you work with.
Can you share a little about your family with us?
I have a daughter who is 22 who will graduate from college in a year and a daughter who is 18. She’ll be graduating from high school this year.