The First Thing They Teach Lifeguards

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Posted Aug 11

I just returned from a two-day conference with my field marketing organization Wealth Financial Group, based in Chicago.  Beautiful city!
Our keynote speaker was author & consultant Frank Maselli, a dynamic, animated, hilarious, brilliant man.  Frank likened us financial advisers to lifeguards, trying to convince potential drowning victims to climb into the lifeboat while there is still room.  He asked us, “What is the first thing a lifeguard has to learn?  To keep from being pulled under by the person you’re trying to rescue!”.
So true.  And it highlighted the stunning frustration most of us non-Wall Street advisers feel as we holler, “Get in the boat!  Get in the boat!”.  The general public has been splashed, dunked, slapped and- in some cases -actually drowned by Wall Street while Wall Streeters accumulate record, massive wealth. 
As Nobel prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz has stated, the economy is broken when financial rewards are disconnected from public benefit.  That is, you should not make a lot of money unless you’ve provided a lot of benefit. 
I get paid very well for what I do.  Mine is a complicated, rapidly changing, essential business.  I put my heart and soul into it and have for over 30 years.  It is my professional mission to dispel the Wall Street myth that you have to lose money to make money.  I can’t believe anyone still buys that shell game.  The lifeboat analogy is right on because- as I pointed out in my last blog post -the options for reducing financial risk keep shrinking in number and in quality.  The lifeboats are filling up.  And I am focusing on swimmers who are close by and ready to climb in.