The Times They Are A-Changin’
Written by Rick Huff
While I was never a Bob Dylan fan, this title to one of his songs accurately describes times past and especially the present. In case you’re not aware, from time to time we at HSC Wealth Advisors sit and discuss how we can serve you better.
We firmly believe our independence, objectivity and no allegiance to any product provider allows us to perform at the peak of our abilities and efficiencies. While we may not always get it exactly right, we try. At the heart of the matter – we do whatever we can to serve you, our clients – our friends, better.
To serve you better, we need to know you better. We firmly believe this means taking steps to place you at ease. One small change, as you may have noticed, was converting our small conference room to a much more casual area.
And, you may have noticed for the last several summers, we have traded our suits, ties and coats for a bit more casual wear.
While it was comfortable for us, we always had the thought that formal wear was expected of us. After all, this is what you see bankers, lawyers and politicians wearing. And it is precisely these groups – bankers, lawyers and politicians – that most people cite as whom they are most uncomfortable being around due to the formality.
But it was at a meeting of stodgy, rigid and formal CPAs who practice as financial advisors that the impact of casual attire was examined. Their line of thinking was, in order to have existing clients and prospective clients be open, honest and communicative, you want them to be comfortable with you. To achieve that level of comfort, reduce the stiffness and rigidity of the meeting by nixing the formal business attire. We thought it made sense.
And it speaks to our mindset and what we believe most of you feel about the whole subject of money. Below are a few quotes from “The Millionaire Next Door”; which is a book based on research done by the two authors that examined attitudes, thoughts and practices of the rich, versus what everyone else thought were the dominant characteristics of the rich.
“His view of millionaires is shared by most people who are not wealthy. They think millionaires own expensive clothes, watches, and other status artifacts. We have found this is not the case.”
“Allocating time and money in the pursuit of looking superior often has a predictable outcome; inferior economic achievement. What are three words that profile the affluent? FRUGAL. FRUGAL. FRUGAL.”
And while business casual may be more comfortable for us, if it engenders greater openness, better communication, deeper and more collaborative relationships with you, we want to try it.
And, if it also signals an attitude of economic achievement by foregoing conspicuous and wasteful consumption, so much the better.
As we make this change, please give us your thoughts and feedback.