Broker Check

The Five Principles of Holistic Financial Planning - Why We Think They Are Important

June 15, 2023

Every day we wake up and we want to improve and get better. HFG has had a 40 plus year tradition and we never want to rest on our laurels. Our clients are depending on us to make a difference in their lives. Our best clients are busy people who are focused on their families, careers, relationships, and all the things that bring meaning to life. They know money is important and want someone with whom they can partner and trust to guide them through major financial decisions for them and their family. In essence, they want a fiduciary who is looking out for their best interests. 

As we focus on retirement income planning and tax management, we want to be outstanding and world class at what we do. We are constantly training and learning and finding out what the best financial advisory firms do. One of the areas is making sure that their team members particularly their advisors have certain body of knowledge. Think of professions like doctors and teachers. In 1800’s, it might have taken someone several months to get the training to become doctor or teacher. As those professions evolved, the body of knowledge they were expected to know increased. 

The financial planning profession until the 1970’s and 80’s was much more sales oriented. Professionals were life insurance sales people or stock brokers peddling products. A group of people wanted us to be more professional and subsequently created the Certified Financial Planning (CFP) Board and subsequently the Certified Financial Planner. When I made the career switch, I did research and that designation was recommended as the gold standard. I had to take six classes, pass tests in each class, and take a comprehensive exam. I am proud to say I was the first CFP in HFG’s history and Melissa and Bryce have joined me. For them, they added additional requirements where they had to complete a case study. We have made this requirement for all of our advisors.

CFP Board wants CFP’s to take a holistic approach to planning that integrates the five principles of planning together. The principles are retirement income, tax management, investment management, insurance, and estate planning. In the past these disciplines were siloed and consumers would be working with different professionals with no integration and coordination. 

The analogy we use a lot is like our doctors. They may be specialist in a given area like cardiologist or urologist. However, when doctor goes to medical school they have proficiency on complete human anatomy. They know that sometimes pain in the feet can be caused by problems with the heart. For us we need to have proficiency in all five areas and know how things are integrated together. Even though our focus is retirement income planning and tax management and this is where we have competitive advantage, we understand that they are intricately tied with investments, protection and estate planning.

We are so excited to keep raising our game, getting better, and providing higher levels of service to our tremendously valued clients.