Meet ACG’s Next Generation: How May We Help You?
At ACG, we’re always asking ourselves what the world is going to look like in 10, 20, or 30 years and beyond, and what we must do as a company to serve our clients in the future. So you can imagine that we place a great deal of importance on developing our talent pool and especially those who are junior in the ranks. So that you can get a sense of how we’re going to be taking care of you, we’d like to introduce you to three of our next generation professionals: Morgan Geiger, Alex Reffett, and Laura Peabody.
Morgan is a Client Relationship Manager at ACG Wealth. She has been with the firm for over a year. In her current capacity, she responds to client inquiries.
Morgan’s purpose, as she sees it, is to help clients get what they need and to enable the advisory team to do their jobs easier by taking care of these items. The target response time is 2 minutes to a maximum of two hours. Morgan is committed to ensuring that clients feel happy and satisfied with any and all situations. Realizing that her actions play a large role in the client experience, says Morgan, “As long as we can ease their mind, we’re doing our job.”
The challenge that comes along with being in such a highly responsive client facing role is, of course, timing. How does she get it all done? Morgan has learned to prioritize what needs to be done first. It has been an advantage to be situated in ACG’s open plan office trading area. This has enabled her to learn the business so quickly by taking in first hand all the investment activity that goes on around her.
Morgan’s goal for 2018 is to obtain her Investment Advisory license and then move on to the CFP® designation. In the longer term, she’d like to work with other women as an advisor devoted to women’s finance.
According to Morgan, “When you deal with couples, it’s nice to have a woman’s perspective on things. Women play a critical role in household finances and where the money is spent.”
Morgan is a financial inspiration for her peers, encouraging her same age friends to begin thinking about saving for retirement. Recent college grads often are challenged by the heavy debt load, but she urges them to save what they can because even a little bit can make a difference in the long run.
Most importantly, Morgan triumphs financial independence for women.
“I never want to have to rely on anyone financially. That is one of my goals in life, to be able to support myself and do what I want without having to depend on anyone else.”
Well said, Morgan. What an empowering message!
Alex is carrying the ACG torch as a younger, up and coming advisor.
Alex feels that being a young advisor has worked to his advantage in building his practice. Clients value his energetic and tenacious approach to understanding the developments of the market. Because of this, he is able to grasp the impact of cryptocurrency and alternative investments which are increasingly becoming a bigger part of the new economy.
Being a young advisor means Alex has a great deal of longevity left in the business. The average financial advisor is age 50 or older. Many affluent people being served by advisors more senior in age may be in for a rude awakening, finding that when they’re retiring so may be their advisor!
Says Alex, “I’m able to see a client through the entire retirement lifecycle. This puts me in a unique position.” Right on, Alex. Who really wants to have to look for a new advisor when you’re 81 years old?
Alex came to ACG Wealth with an $8MM book of business. Being at ACG has allowed him to grow this practice to almost ten times that size.
Alex cites the team approach as a huge source of support. Having dedicated teams in place to serve clients has given him credibility that has counterbalanced any negative stigma about his youth. ACG has an in-house financial planning team, comprised of many individuals who hold the CFP® designation. ACG also has an in-house investment team consisting of CFA® charterholders. According to Alex, “It has made a big difference for clients to know that there is a team behind me and they’re not just trusting their money to some 23 year old.”
In terms of working with his own generation, Alex has seen that not everybody needs to same level of attention that a full private wealth solution can provide. A robo-advisor, such as digital ACG (which will launch in early 2018) is a great alternative for people at that position in life.
Some ACG team members want to build their own empire, while others see their mission as taking care of the kingdom that we already have.
Laura Peabody, the Senior Client Relationship Manager, has been with ACG Wealth since 2010 and plays a key role in holding up our world. She supports ACG’s top performing advisors, balancing the demands of a fuller than normal workload with grace and dignity. And in between responding to client requests and managing the day to day of these relationships, she plays a critical role in solidifying the company’s brand.
Laura acts as a training and mentoring resource for the junior members of the firm. As ACG has grown substantially over the last few years, this has resulted in an influx of new talent, some of which has come to us from outside the securities industry. When that happens, somebody has to be the mentor.
Laura’s responsibilities in her player-coach role include fielding questions about the custodial and broker dealer systems and how to respond to client requests. She helps mentor the team and encourages them to understand that client issues present an opportunity to deepen trust.
Says Laura, “If there is an issue, what do you say to the clients to get a positive response? When a client calls in, a lot of the success in converting it to a positive experience has to do with how you handle it, what you say, and how you follow-up. Don’t just fix it, show them that you care and want them to be satisfied.”
Under Laura’s guidance, our younger staff maintains its focus on being a client-focused brand. This is of crucial importance as we grow. When a new client comes to the firm, trust has to be earned. In these early days, clients can feel uneasy and it’s our job to build the relationship. She helps demonstrate to our team how to show empathy and understanding as well as a sincere interest in the client’s life and what they have going on. After a while, people start to notice that you care about them and see that we have their best interest in mind.