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Episode Summary

Most financial advisors do a great job focusing on WHAT clients want to achieve (Goals) and showing them HOW to achieve it (Financial Planning).

The “What”: Retire at age 65, fully fund a child’s education, buy a vacation home, leave money to loved ones, etc., etc.

The “How”: Asset-allocated portfolio, increased savings into retirement plans, tax minimization, risk management, updating beneficiaries, etc., etc. 

But the best advice moves beyond both “What” and “How” and focuses on WHY.

And, once you can internalize this concept, it provides the answers to the most-common questions questions and solutions to the most-pressing problems:

  • Everything went well but why can’t I get this prospect to become a client? 
  • Why will this person not send in the documents we need?
  • How do I help my clients align their money with the life they want to live?
  • Why don’t my clients send me more referrals?
  • Why do I have to keep following up with them to get them to do what they want to do?

And so on…

That’s because the “Why” is what ultimately drives our behavior with money and determines our satisfaction and fulfillment in life.

If you want clients who align their money with what’s most important to their lives, who follow-through on your advice, who consolidate assets, and refer you to their friends and family…

You have to start with “Why.” (Thank you, Simon Sinek!)

The “Why” is the client’s values, purpose, intentions, etc.

The “Why” shapes the “What” which determines the “How.”

Let’s look at an example of a client whose “Why”, purpose, and value is spending more time with their family.

  • WHY (Purpose): Spend more time with family
  • WHAT (Goal): Build a deck on the back of the house to host family gatherings for birthdays and holidays
  • HOW (Financial Planning): Save $375/month

A financial plan without a purpose is merely data on a page.

A portfolio without a purpose is merely a list of investments.

Purpose brings the plan and portfolio to life.

That’s why Tim Maurer says, “The future of financial planning is the infusion of life within it.”

He’s been through some of the top trainings in the industry, worked with clients, and now shows advisors how to infuse life into the financial planning process.

Things You’ll Learn

  • The most important things he learned about behavioral finance from interviewing Richard Thaler
  • Behavioral Finance 2.0 – why biases are features not bugs
  • Why advisors need to focus less on helping clients save for retirement and more on helping maximize their life today
  • What the CFP says about qualitative data gathering (that no one knows about)
  • What he learned from his time training with Rick Kahler, Brad Klontz, Money Quotient, and the Kinder Institute
  • His “Four Cards” process he designed to help advisors uncover what’s most important in their client’s lives
  • “Why are we here?” – why this question is so powerful and how to use it
  • The difference between “Anything else?” and “What else?” and when to use each
  • How to handle the situation when the client or prospective client is hesitant to talk about anything other than money
  • “Advisor-driven” versus “Client-inspired” recommendations
  • Why he never gives more than three action items at a time

About Tim Maurer

Tim Maurer is the Head of Wealth Management for Triad Financial Advisors, an advisor, a speaker and an author. He writes a column for Forbes, he’s the author of Simple Money, the co-author of The Ultimate Financial Plan, and a member of the CNBC Financial Advisor Council.

Other Episodes You’ll Like From Advisors Focused On The Human Side


Tim Maurer Website

Tim Maurer Twitter

Tim Maurer LinkedIn

Tim Maurer – Forbes Articles

Behavioral Finance: The Second Generation by Meir Statman

Adopting a “Coach Approach” To Overcome Financial Planning Inaction by Tim Maurer

Simple Money: A No-Nonsense Guide to Personal Finance by Tim Maurer

Switch: How to Change When Change is Hard by Chip and Dan Heath

When Breath Becomes Air: What Makes Life Worth Living In The Face Of Death? by Paul Kalanithi


Whenever you’re ready, there are 3 ways I can help you master the human side of advice:

  1. HSOA Masterclass: An 8-week group program on building trust & connection, aligning money and life, and delivering frictionless advice.
  2. The Ultimate Discovery Meeting: A proven framework to seamlessly convert prospects into life-long clients in one meeting.
  3. HSOA Community (COMING SOON!): An online space to meet, collaborate, discuss, brainstorm, learn and grow with other advisors passionate about the human side of advice

If you’re interested, let me know here.