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What Motivates You?

By LouAnn Schulfer, AWMA®, AIF®
Accredited Wealth Management AdvisorSM
Accredited Investment Fiduciary®

I am thrilled and excited when we receive a Confidential Profile from a prospective new client. It’s the starting point for us as advisors in a possible new relationship and as you can imagine, each person or couple’s situation is unique and fascinating. For me, it’s like watching a cooking show: the moment the chef opens his/her box of ingredients and their mind begins to marvel in the creative process and see the potential outcome.

For years, financial and advisory training and marketing has focused on asking people what their goals are. Ads show happy retirees traveling the world and conquering new adventures or peacefully sitting on a porch swing without a care in the world. Goals and dreams are a great source of motivation and a starting point for conversation. But some people are wired different. Goals and dreams may be a second priority to worries and concerns. It is common during our initial meeting for a conversation to ensue about first addressing uncertainties and apprehensions before we can get to goals and dreams. That is perfectly normal and a fine way to begin.

Common concerns include large portfolio losses, retiring and no longer receiving a paycheck, large recurring expenses such as those from long term care, outliving one’s money or dying too soon. Often times it’s after we get through these and other sources of stress that one can now begin to dream about the future. You may pursue your future by first identifying goals and dreams or rather, by addressing your worries and concerns. Both work: the correct way is the way that motivates you.

LouAnn Schulfer is co-owner of Schulfer & Associates, LLC Wealth Management and can be reached at (715) 343-9600 or

Securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor.  Member FINRA/SIPC.