How I Went From Executive Coach to Impact Investment Advisor
If you told me at the beginning of 2020 that I would be a financial advisor by year-end, I would have had a good laugh.
At the time, I was focused on my executive and life coaching clients, a practice I spent years building. Although I previously worked in traditional finance for over a decade, I thought that my days of following the markets and trading stocks and bonds were long behind me.
A few months into 2020, the world entered a global recession, with most of the world in lockdown. I’d worked as a hedge fund analyst during the 2008 financial crisis, and found myself fascinated by the economic and policy shifts that were occurring in response to the pandemic.
As stock market valuations dropped meaningfully, several friends reached out to ask me about investing. I offered to host a group call to share insights. The call brought together a variety of people, and it was fun to connect and hear different perspectives. I made it a weekly offering.
In time, it became clear that friends cared about investing for their financial future and yet found it challenging to do so in a way that aligned with their personal values. While there are straightforward choices with respect to how we can spend our money – the food we eat, the products we use, or the vehicles we drive – the choices for our investments are less clear.
By mid-2020, I saw a clear opportunity to combine my coaching skills with what I learned as a financial analyst to help people plan for their future and invest in a more conscious way. In September, I launched Evolve Investing, a Registered Investment Adviser.
As I started working with clients, I found myself applying many of the skills and principles that I learned through my training and practice as an executive and life coach. Most of my initial work with clients focuses on deeply understanding their values and unique strengths. From there, we work to clarify their goals, create a path to reach them, and eliminate the blocks and limiting beliefs that are getting in the way.
Based on the feedback I received, my clients appreciate Evolve Investing’s approach of prioritizing their values and beliefs first. While having skills and knowledge about investing and financial planning is important, being fully seen and understood by their advisor is the most important.
It is clear that many clients also care about educating themselves with respect to the factors that impact their investments — economic drivers, fiscal and monetary policy changes, and developments within companies and industries. They value working with an advisor who not only has their finger on the pulse of the financial markets but is also there to help them understand their investments in greater depth.
Through my relationship with OpenInvest, my clients are also empowered to maximize their impact by investing in the causes they care about: reducing greenhouse gas emissions, supporting women leaders and racial equality, fighting deforestation, and more.
As challenging as this pandemic has been for so many people, it’s also created some incredible opportunities. Sometimes it takes a significant disruption for us to see what is no longer working. I’m grateful for the opportunity to combine my coaching skills and financial knowledge to offer a unique approach to investment advising.
The information provided in this article is solely the opinion of the author and should not be considered the opinion or belief of OpenInvest. Individuals who provide opinions on OpenInvest are not provided with any financial incentive, nor does OpenInvest receive any compensation for articles written. References to any particular entity should not be considered as an endorsement of or by OpenInvest.