Every day, we’re inundated with information. From the moment we wake up, we’re having information and news thrown at us to process: our inboxes get slammed with emails, our to-do lists get longer, the talking heads are telling us a new thing we need to know. But how do we wade through this onslaught of information to find out what really matters? And how do we pinpoint the crucial information we need in terms of specific topics? When it comes to financial education, the amount of knowledge out there is no different. If you do a simple Google search about financial education, there are millions of results. There is no way to filter through all of that information and determine what is actually helpful and what is harmful. So, how do you know where to look for this information and what to look for?
The first place to look for financial knowledge is through a wealth advisor. You wouldn’t trust just anyone to diagnose you with a medical condition, and you shouldn’t trust just anyone to guide your financial health. Just like doctors, wealth managers have spent their lives learning about their field. They are a great resource to tap into to learn more about money and finance. Your wealth manager should also be checking out other experts and members on your financial team. My team reviews the experts that work with our clients. If we see a “B” or “C” player, we let our clients know. If we get any comment from a client other than, “They’re terrific,” we tell them that it may be time to look around for someone else. It’s a big red flag when a person says, “Well, Joe’s been my insurance agent since I got out of college twenty-five years ago, and he’s a good old boy,” or anything like that. Our question is, “Okay, what has Joe done for you recently?” We find out that the only time he’s in contact with Joe, besides going golfing or fishing, is when he thinks of a need and he calls Joe.
Reality check: if you’re coming up with or reading about better ideas than are the people on your expert list, you’d better start to replace them. If you have your own business, you know that you have some “A,” “B,” and “C” players as employees. The surest road to ruin for a business is to have “C” players on the payroll. “B” employees may not be that much better. When it comes to your team of experts, if you don’t have all “A” players, you’re not going to be able to accomplish what you could have, and it’s going to be a longer struggle for you.
This new knowledge should act as an impetus to start asking the right questions and researching how to better your financial knowledge.
For more tips on how to educate yourself on finance, visit tswealth.com.