Fraser Jack: 00:04 Welcome to the goals based advice podcast where I have conversations with pioneers in the new world of financial advice. I’m your host, Fraser Jack, and we are coming to you from the FPA Congress here in beautiful Melbourne and we’re sitting in the kombi van and I’ve just managed to drag Mitch Anthony and welcome.
Mitch Anthony: 00:30 Thanks for having me. This is the most unique studio I’ve ever done an interview in.
Fraser Jack: 00:34 Oh fantastic. Yeah, me two actually, although I’ve done a couple in the last couple of days, but it’s a great little little thing to hang out in, isn’t it?
Mitch Anthony: 00:40 It’s fantastic.
Fraser Jack: 00:41 Now tell us about yourself.
Mitch Anthony: 00:43 Well, I’m from the United States. I live in Minnesota. I’m an author and consultant and accidental tourist in financial services and absolutely love the topic of money and meaning. And so I spend a lot of my time writing or speaking at conferences like this, 40, 50 conferences a year to advisors and consulting with firms and equipping them with tools and ideas to help them deliver greater value to their clients.
Fraser Jack: 01:14 Wow, fantastic. So you’re the right person to have in the kombi van talking to the advisors on the podcast. Tell us what you’re doing here and you’ve got a couple of sessions, you were a keynote yesterday, you got another session coming up.
Mitch Anthony: 01:27 Yeah, yesterday was a panel, I think sort of just to take the weighty air out of the whole regulatory pressure that’s upon everyone. And one of the statements I made yesterday was that regulators arise because irregularities are bound. And so it’s cleaning up the platform and it’s an opportunity for those that do things right and do things properly and actually have a heart of service instead of a heart of sales driving them to demonstrate to the world what this really is about and what it can be. So there are a number of really good panelists, good practitioners. I was sort of the odd man out in terms of that. My clients are advisors, their clients are clients. And then this afternoon’s session is about developing relationships that last, and I’ve been studying discovery, the process of discovery and found that it’s often very shallow and it’s often misguided in the direction that it goes.
Mitch Anthony: 02:27 And me knowing your numbers is not me knowing you. Me knowing your stories is a different matter. I like to put it this way: the juxtaposition is that we gather a story numbers, but then we gather a number of stories and the numbers are there to serve the story. So I’m trying to teach people how to be better biographers of their client and there’s a natural organic order to that discovery. It starts with going to the past. I know your podcast is called Goals Base... We’re eventually going to get to goals. Right? But we don’t start the conversation with goals. Anyway, that’s my theory on it. It’s because so often when we ask people what their goals are we get that deer in the headlight look like, “Oh right, I’m not sure.” And then I find they’ll often sort of spit out a cliche like tell you what they think you wanted them to say.
Mitch Anthony: 03:17 “Oh, I think I want to retire.” Okay, great. So the natural organic path of discovery is we start with a past. That’s concrete, Fraser. You know about your past. You know where you grew up. You knew what your parents do. You know what it was like growing up there. You knew what you wanted to be when you were growing up. You know where you went to school. You know where you met your mate. You know your career. There’s no awkwardness there. You’re just telling me your story and I’m learning about your blueprint.
Mitch Anthony: 03:41 Then we come to the present. What’s happening in your life right now? What are the challenges and the opportunities in front of you? These are called transitions. And what I’ve been preaching for years is that before we ever address goals and objectives and possibilities, we need to address transitions. Because there’s an economic law at work here, it’s: money goes in motion, when life goes in transition. It’s the life transition that causes money to move away from us or toward us. So think of any transition in life. Death, divorce, child going to college, child getting married, right? Most people, if I challenged them to name all the transitions they I can think of might come up with 10 or 12. They’re 66. I’ve studied them from the cradle to the grave. And guess what? Every one of them caused money to move.
Fraser Jack: 04:26 Speaking of transition, there’s plenty of transition going on for the planners at the moment with what they’re going through and that’s causing a bit of money get to go-
Mitch Anthony: 04:34 Yes, yes there is. And again, those that rise up and deliver a transcendent value proposition, they’re going to not only survive, they’re going to thrive. But here’s the deal. At the end of the day, we’ve been hanging our hat on what I would call vaporous and vacuous value, right? Vacuous value when there’s actually nothing there like, “I’m going to do asset allocation for you.” well, so can a machine that’s not value, right? “I’m going to go over your numbers with you.” well, you already sent me a statement. I saw them. So restating what you already sent to me is not... That’s vacuous value. Vaporous value has more to do with financial planning. When we front load all the work upfront and we develop a plan and all we’re doing is revisiting redundantly what we talked about the last seven times we met. That’s vaporous value.
Mitch Anthony: 05:21 So the kind of value I’m talking about is substantive and it’s PR self perpetuating. So when you start tracking what’s happening in the client’s life, they’re keenly interested because it’s their life, right? And why do we want to track? Why do we want to be proactive about their life? Because it’s better to prepare than it is to repair. And we know that people usually make their biggest financial mistakes when they’re in the midst of one of these life transitions and they weren’t prepared financially for it. So that is a substantive value. It’s a sustainable value and the price will never go down on it.
Fraser Jack: 05:55 Yeah, this really to to foreground when I think about the idea of transactional advice, which is quite prevalent here versus the relationship advice and actually truly that transactional advice around knowing the numbers. Yes, we know that that’s a fact and that happens in these sorts of things versus the relationship advice when as you said, you really get into their backstory. Why, what makes them tick and understand the client’s values.
Mitch Anthony: 06:18 Yeah. And it’s not just getting their story for the sake of getting their stories. It’s for understanding them as a unique individual. Right? How can I create a personalized plan if I don’t understand what makes you unique? So I have my own little, and I’m not trying to be cute or cheeky about it by having my own definition of AUM... And it’s the acronym AUM. A is align means with meaning. Figure out what they want that money to do in their life. Everyone that has money has purpose or intention tied to that money. That’s what the goals based things all about. What is the purpose? What is the intention? What do you want to do with that money? So A is align means with meaning. U is understand what makes them unique as an individual. Right? So that when we put the plan together, they see that it’s like looking in a mirror for them, right? They’re going to act on it. And the M is monitor all life changes. Right? So the AUM here isn’t the asset. It’s not the material. It’s not the wealth report. It’s the person’s story.
Fraser Jack: 07:21 Yeah. And the continuation of that story. I’ve got this theory, speaking of acronyms we use “funds under management” or “assets under management”, but I really want to see the scenario where we have “goals under management”. So G-U-M, GUM. Instead of evaluating our business on assets under management and we want to compare businesses, let’s look at to see what goals under management.
Mitch Anthony: 07:44 Yeah. I’ll tell you someone you’d enjoy talking to, who has a thing called “dreams under management” in Brazil. Is [Andre Novias 00:07:51] and he’s built a company called Life FP. They have 5,000 clients in seven years. And it’s all about dreams under management. And by the way, speaking of fees, Andre’s a real pioneer here because everyone’s rubbing their hands and worried about sustaining a 1% fee. His clients pay him 5% of their income. This is in a second world economy where the average income is around $20,000 of their clients, 5% of their income. They see that much value.
Fraser Jack: 08:22 Wow. I’m definitely going to look him up and, and hit him up. Yeah, that sounds fantastic. So what are the things that you’re wanting the advisors to take away? Like a 2020, next year... What are the things that you want advisers to take away, maybe work on and need to change in their business?
Mitch Anthony: 08:40 Well, I’m just trying to equip advisors that get this. So I’ve got two companies. One is ROL Adviser where if an advisor’s made up their mind, I’m going to be life centered. I’m going to deliver relational value. We equip them with discovery software. We equip them with marketing materials, we equip them with education, we equip them with coaching every month. That’s one company, ROL Advisor. The other’s called Life Centered Planners and as for people they are either from the moderately curious to really wanting to learn more. It’s an educational self-driven educational site and that’s lifecenteredplanners.com
Fraser Jack: 09:14 I’ve made a plan to that. It’s been through that here in Australia and really loved it.
Mitch Anthony: 09:19 Okay. Yeah, I know who you’re talking about now. That’s a different program. That’s Texas Tech, that’s a university program and Glenn Malcovich is the first graduate of that program and an Australian, and he’s the first one to receive the certified Life Centered Planner certificate from Texas Tech University.
Fraser Jack: 09:38 Wow. That’s a massive honor, isn’t it?
Mitch Anthony: 09:41 Yeah. Well yeah, he’s a great guy and this thing’s going to grow. Because Texas Tech, a lot of people don’t know this, is literally like the Harvard of financial planning. They invented financial planning as a college course.
Fraser Jack: 09:53 Well, and we’ve got Glen coming on the show in a couple of weeks, so that’s going to be great to find out a bit more about that.
Mitch Anthony: 09:58 Yeah.
Fraser Jack: 09:58 So what are you working on? You can see you’ve got all these courses. What are you working on for 2020?
Mitch Anthony: 10:02 Well, the fifth edition of my book, The New Retirementality is coming out in January.
Fraser Jack: 10:07 Fifth edition?
Mitch Anthony: 10:08 The fifth edition. When I first wrote the book, they looked at me like I was smoking something that wasn’t legal at the time and thought I lost my mind because I basically came out in 2001 and said I think retirement might be the worst social construct in the history of the world. I absolutely hate the idea and I hate what it does to people that don’t want it. And so that’s coming out. So I’m continuing to coach advisors on how to coach their clients through that retirement process. It’s about more than money, it’s about lifestyle.
Mitch Anthony: 10:36 It’s like the first question we have to answer is how are you going to spend your time? And then the second question we have to answer is how are we going to pay for that? Let’s get this conversation in the proper order. So I’m just continuing to push that idea out to advisers that you are the destination for retirement coaching, but you need to broaden your dialogue. This is the big thing that I’m pushing in the years ahead: broaden your dialogue. When you broaden your dialogue, you broaden your opportunity.
Fraser Jack: 11:00 Well, that’s really good advice. How long are you here in Australia for?
Mitch Anthony: 11:03 About 12 more hours.
Fraser Jack: 11:07 You’re on your way to the airport?
Mitch Anthony: 11:08 It’s been a whirlwind. I wish I had more time here, but we had some airline issues this time and my clothes went another way and my books went another way. But anyway, I’m happy to be here. I love the energy in this Congress. It’s fantastic energy.
Fraser Jack: 11:22 Yeah, it’s been a fantastic couple of days so far and one day to go. You might miss the last day, but it’s been pretty good.
Mitch Anthony: 11:28 Yeah. Yeah, it’s been fantastic.
Fraser Jack: 11:29 Well, thank you so much for coming into the kombi van and having a chat with me. If people want to reach out to you, what’s the best way to do it?
Mitch Anthony: 11:35 Mitch@mitchanthony.com.
Mitch Anthony: 11:37 Happy to answer any email they want to send or any inquiry they want to send and they can learn about those sites I mentioned just by going to the dotcoms ROL, advisor.com, lifecenteredplanners.com.
Fraser Jack: 11:50 Fantastic. Thank you so much. Really love your energy. Thanks for and sharing with our listeners.
Mitch Anthony: 11:54 All right. Thank you. Appreciate it.
Fraser Jack: 11:57 If you haven’t already, I’d love you to subscribe to the podcast on your podcast platform of choice and to continue the conversation hit over to our social media channels. We’ll catch you next time.
Disclaimer: This document is a transcription obtained through a third party. There is no claim to accuracy on the content provided in this document, and divergence from the audio file are to be expected. As a transcription, this is not a legal document in itself, and should not be considered binding to advice intelligence, but merely a convenience for reference.