Grow Their Wealth
Ep 14 JR MacDonald Episode

Ep 14 JR MacDonald Episode

July 13, 2022

On Episode 14, I speak with JR MacDonald, a 41-year veteran lawyer whose practice exclusively focuses on succession, estate and tax planning for business owners. This episode is for those of us financial advisors who are building or want to build a clientele of highly successful owner-managers. Although our conversation gets a bit technical at times, listen in for the anecdotes and insights from JR’s experience. He shares how we as advisors can truly be the quarterback in helping these owner-managers. By the way, the conversation also lends itself to advisors who are looking to create their own succession plans. 


Episode Highlights

00:00→ Shyam welcomes JR MacDonald; JR’s background; finding success as an owner-manager

05:30→ The importance of goals and plans to achieve them; communication between owners, accountants, and financial planners for business succession

09:00→ Building client knowledge; tax planning; the importance of a good financial planner 

15:00→ Get to know your clients and get to know their advisors

22:00→ What constitutes a successful business that can begin restructuring

30:00→ Different trust-related tax changes

36:00→ Closing thoughts 

Episode Thirteen: Grant Hicks

Episode Thirteen: Grant Hicks

June 3, 2022

In this episode, Grant shares some really valuable insights on capacity planning and marketing. He specifically walks me - and by extension, you - through a couple of exercises on how to design your practice, add more value while optimizing your own time, take 8-12 weeks of vacation a year, and create an advisory practice that won't just sell for two times revenue but 5-10 times multiple. On marketing, we talk about how to segment clients more effectively, what to look for in an ideal client - beyond their net worth or investable assets - and how to acquire larger clients because, let's face it: if your practice is growing, primarily through referrals. Your best clients have $1M of investable assets. They aren't referring you to clients with $5 or $10 million. This is one of those episodes that you may want to listen to more than once.


Episode Highlights

4:38 → How financial planning has changed over the decades
8:55 → The best practice-management strategy and how to implement it
11:42 → Creating goals for your clients and your own personal practice
16:09 → Expanding your practice and attracting the ideal client
43:57→ The ideal business model
46: 30 → Marketing and generating more ideal leads

Episode Twelve: Jason Pereira

Episode Twelve: Jason Pereira

May 6, 2022

In this episode, Jason and I talk about how he’s built his practice based on client success instead of targets, what and who he learned from along the way, and how to grow without making larger clients subsidize smaller ones. He also passionately explains why he advocates for advisors to be held to a fiduciary standard, including how that would spur immense innovation in our industry and thereby improve service levels for clients at all levels. One of my many takeaways from the conversation was that no matter how well I think I know the answer to a planning question, the best practice is always to refer back to the source. Listen in for many more little gems!


Episode Highlights

10:00 -  You only know 99%, the magic of Google, resources you can trust
17:00 - The Dunbar number, subsidizing unprofitable clients, relationships matter
22:00 - How to make your business profitable, prudent buying and smart selling
32:00 - Virtual vs full-body staff, time management and delegating
43:00 - The backwards system, charging for your services, keep financial planning at the core
51:00 - Fiduciary rule, changes to the industry, the Australian way

Episode Eleven: Jayesh Kasim

Episode Eleven: Jayesh Kasim

April 5, 2022

In this episode, Jayesh shares the incredible journey of how he replaced his income from a high-paying mining job in just 9 months as a financial planner. He also talks about how he marketed his practice - leading it to expand into 3 locations in 3 years, and why he decided to sell that practice to help advisors meet their staffing, technology, and marketing needs. This business now employs over 500 staff and counting, and he's done this in under 10 years. Listen in to learn how successful advisors are scaling up their businesses.


Episode Highlights

7:45 - Marketing secrets, finding value in the back-office, selling the businesses
12:30 - CRMs, Smartsheet and Lucid Chart for workflows
21:00 - Finding similarities, dealing with regulations
27:00 - A business model to follow, know what you pay for

Episode Ten: Michael Gau

Episode Ten: Michael Gau

March 17, 2022

On Episode 10, I speak with Michael Gau of Win Succession. He’s acquired over 50 books of life insurance and investment business and provides some great insights on how to position your book for sale and what to look for when buying. Listen in to learn about what can go wrong in a transition and how to get it right.

Episode Highlights
7:00 - The secret to success, cold calls and relationships, new technology
11:00 - The need for training, the aging population, and children
19:00 - Smooth transitions, eagerness and cutting corners, wakeup calls
27:00 - Look under the hood, preparing clients for a sale, practical considerations, compliance
40:00 - Marketing successfully, keep it simple

Episode Nine: Joey Lam & Caleb Miller

Episode Nine: Joey Lam & Caleb Miller

February 18, 2022

In Episode 9 of the Grow Their Wealth Financial Advisor Podcast, I speak with Joey Lam and Caleb Miller, founding partners of InvestorDNA in Calgary. We speak about how they met each other and why they quit successful practices at a life insurance career agency to start something fresh. We talk about their acquisition, and how they’ve grown by significantly cutting down their service offering. What’s really interesting is that Joey and Caleb are not lead advisors on any client files themselves - they are primarily owner-managers. What’s more, clients of the firm actually get multiple advisors working in a collaboration. Listen in to learn more about this “out of the box” approach to building an advisory firm.


Episode Highlights

7:00→The heart of company culture, why good management means digging into the “why” behind the people

16:45→Personality tests make for better partnerships, business relationships aren’t always easy

20:35→Jumping in cold turkey, motivation to get going, forget the naysayers

25:15→Being mindful of your team’s uniqueness, invest in relationships, giving everyone a say provides balance and value

33:50→Making hard decisions that pay off, keep it simple to add value  

Episode Eight: Charlie Conron

Episode Eight: Charlie Conron

January 28, 2022

Charlie Conron is the Founder and CTO at Life Design Analysis. He shares the story of how he leveraged technology to double his step-father’s life insurance business year over year several times in a row. He talks about how that sparked the idea to build a tool that over 20,000 advisors now use. Listen in to learn what happens when life insurance is more understandable to new clients, and how to improve service and mine opportunities in an existing book of business.  

Episode Seven: Aly Dhalla

Episode Seven: Aly Dhalla

January 21, 2022

Although he first aspired to work in sports therapy, Aly Dhalla’s career path snaked its way through financial services working for TD Bank, to a tech startup in the insurance space and finally has led him to co-found Finaeo, a venture-backed insurtech startup that is reshaping insurance distribution to help independent life insurance advisors thrive in a digital era. Finaeo provides advisors with a digital toolkit, paired with an on-demand concierge back office, to enable advisers to create the future of advice: the “Bionic Advisor.”

Listen in as Aly shares his passion for using tech to help people–and the many lessons he’s learned along the way. 

Episode Highlights

0:47→ Lesson learned: the bond between a financial professional and a household; keep people at the center of financial services.

10:00→ Health is physical, emotional and financial; health+wealth=happiness.

11:30→ How science and technology fit together to meet needs; tech creates value.

16:50→ Why tech infiltration into the financial services world was inevitable.

22:20→ More business is done at Starbucks than in the office; launching mobile apps.

34:00→ Steve Jobs mindset: start from the customer problem and work your way back to the tech; the magic of a coach and a team.

39:00→ Mistakes and what Aly would have done differently; creating core values.  

Episode Six: Michael Wortsman

Episode Six: Michael Wortsman

December 1, 2021

Host Shyam Ganesh speaks with Michael Wortsman, Partner at Bridgewell Financial. They discuss how his passion for technology at a very young age allowed him to be extremely effective at taking over and managing a small book of group business. He shares how his fine arts background has helped him build a brand and the client experience, and how he grew his group business to over 275 clients through referrals, partnerships and effective delegation. We also talk about why he has set in motion plans to spend the next chapter of his business growth in a merger partnership with a team of financial planners and insurance specialists who are also aligned on the same business owner market.


Episode Highlights

5:29: Career-building mentorship and some formative, memorable mistakes

13:15: The role of integrity: actions speak louder than words

19:50: How a business coach got me from 80% to 100%

30:30: SaaS, “service the hell out of your client and he’ll never leave you”, and other helpful tech

38:00: The tipping point: the moment he realized he needed to expand his team to grow

43:00: Partnering and launching Bridgewell Financial    

Episode Five: Philip Setter

Episode Five: Philip Setter

November 17, 2021

Founder and CEO of Business Critical and Advisor Institute, Philip Setter, sits down today to talk about his personal and professional journey. From his humble beginnings in the financial services industry, trying to start a lawn painting business, through many highs and lows, mistakes and surprising learning opportunities, he entertains us with stories about how he came to start his Business Critical seminars and founded the Advisor Institute. 

In hilarious detail, he shares how, throughout his career path as an advisor, he discovered all the gaps in his knowledge and set out to learn as much as he could to best help his business owner clients. He then realized how his ability to boil down complex information and his extensive knowledge of the field could be used to help other advisors like himself be more successful. Thus, his CCIP curriculum was born! It has helped meet the needs of so many of his peers who are grappling to meet the unique and complex needs of business owners. 

Philip shares the many pivots he’s had to make with the covid pandemic’s disruptions to typical marketing strategies, and talks about exciting upcoming projects in the works.


Episode Highlights

1:15: The biggest business flop, big mistakes and quitting the cushiest job ever

12:20: Intro to insurance, finding a niche, how massage therapists made me give up

18:40: Everyone cares about tax, figuring out it’s all about business owners, why my seminars were bad

25:00: The ‘Aha moment’, a shameless plug for my curriculum, why information matters

27:00: The uphill battle to prove my credibility, how accountants made me better at my job, the best way to learn is to teach

32:00: How I got started marketing my seminars, my networking secret, how covid made me pivot (again)

41:00: Post-covid marketing, building a better long-term system, why charging changes everything

55:00: The switch to Insurance Advisors, the 12-part plan with no content, filling a niche

59:00: Launching CCIP, getting into the big leagues, the 2021 revamp.

1:03:00: The CCIP explosion, accreditation, why you need to know everything about insurance to work with business owners   

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