Don’t Play Without a Coach: Why Working with a Financial Advisor Is Worth It

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By Marques Ogden 


Athletes don’t take to the field, to the pool or to the court without a trusted coach to help them train for optimal performance.  

A coach is someone who cares deeply about your development. But a coach is only effective if their athletes have the ability to be an active listener. Especially if your coach is someone you want to be like or is doing what you want to do. You are taking their information, processing it and applying it to your life.  

I have an acronym for COACH: Caring, Objective, Affluent, Consistent, High performer. A coach cares about your development at the core, just like a financial advisor. A coach is objective – they give you really great advice that you may not want to hear, but they’re fair and objective and they have your best interests at heart (all qualities that you want when approaching wealth management and working with a financial advisor). A coach is affluent – not with money or fame, but with opening up their Rolodex to you. They know a lot of people that can help you expand and grow your network and become better at what you do (just like a good financial advisor helps you reach your financial objectives). A coach is consistent, they show up every single day. Belief is the hope that someone is going to get something done, but trust is the full confidence that somebody is going to do what they say they’re going to do to help you succeed. Great coaches turn belief into trust. Lastly, your coach is a high performer. They have the pedigree and proven track record of doing what they have done to help you do what you need to do.   

If you don’t have a coach in life, you’re going to get stuck. A great coach can help you navigate the waters to get you to your target destination and beyond.  Let’s see how working with a financial advisor can help you pursue your financial planning and investment goals.

The Financial Advisor as a Coach

What does all that have to do with financial planners?  

“A financial advisor is like a coach, but for your financial life, helping guide you across different milestones – savings, investments and eventually your retirement,” says Jamie Hopkins, managing partner of Omaha, Neb.-based Carson Group.  

I agree.  

If you don’t have an advisor and you’re trying to navigate your own finances, you’re basically out there throwing darts at a dart board hoping you hit the bullseye.  

Here’s the thing: A financial planner or advisor is your collaborative partner. They’re vested in your future and your success. A really great personal financial advisor is an expert in what you don’t know how to do. For instance, I know about the stock market and I know about the New York Stock Exchange. But am I going to go take my money and try to invest it in the market myself? Absolutely not. I don’t know the intricacies of the market or have any insight into what might happen with interest rates in the future. I don’t know any of that stuff. I am a total neophyte in those areas.  

So if I’m going to take my hard-earned money that I’ve worked my butt off for and go and gamble in the market as a neophyte, I’m the biggest dummy on Earth – bigger than Fred T. Sanford. I’m not going to do that because at the end of the day you become a client and hire somebody for the end result: financial freedom. And your financial advisor can help you create a financial plan to help achieve that end result.   

A financial advisor or investment professional is more than just an advisor for your finances. They’re a collaborative partner and a caring coach that will help you create a plan, which will in turn create structure, discipline and focus around your financial decision making. Your financial advisor or investment advisor is your coach that’s going to help you get from where you are, to where you want to be by creating the right financial and investment strategy for you.

If you’re trying to go out in this world and do things on your own without an advisor, you’re playing with fire. I’ve been burned before when I lost my construction company, and I rely on my personal finance advisor so I don’t get burned again.   

Coaching Is for Everyone  

I got to play football with my brother Jonathan Ogden in Baltimore. My brother said, “Marcus when Coach [Jim] Colletto speaks, I listen. Anytime he speaks to me about technique, how to get better, how I can do things, I listen.”  

The greatest quote from Tiger Woods is: “No matter how good you are, you can always get better.” That’s the importance of a coach – I don’t care if it’s Michael Jordan, Ray Lewis, Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Wayne Gretsky – every athlete has a coach.  

“A lot of the best people that have ever played in the NFL and in sports – even though they know the game, they still respect their coaches,” Hopkins said. “They still look for somebody to see the bigger picture. That’s an important part of a financial advisor’s job – viewing the bigger picture.”   

Hopkins noted a lot of people feel they might not be worthy of financial advice, but to them I say that you’re never too young or too green to start something like retirement planning or investment decision making. A coach at this stage is especially important – even if you don’t have a lot of money – to help you develop good habits so that as you grow older, you can start having your money work for you.  

Knowledge is power, but applying knowledge is life changing. A financial advisor or planner can help you start applying that knowledge today because you owe yourself that for your future tomorrow.  

Looking for Your Own Financial Coach?

A professional financial advisor can help guide you toward your financial goals. If you’re not currently working with one – or you’re looking for a new coach – we can help. Let us help you connect with a professional in your area today.  


This material provided and written by Marques Ogden, a non-affiliate of Cetera Advisor Networks, LLC. 

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