Tag Archives: Diversity

Ep 62: Developing and Retaining Next Gen Talent — With Yonhee Gordon



While firms may be successful in hiring younger employees, they often struggle to keep them.

In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain talk about successful retention strategies with Yonhee Gordon, a Principal of JMG Financial Group and the RIA’s Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer. They discuss how a methodical hiring process and a willingness to truly get to know prospective candidates can help lead to fewer surprises and better retention. Yonhee also provides practical advice for young professionals on preparing for a successful career in the financial industry.

Yonhee Gordon discusses: 

  • What’s powering JMG’S fast growth of assets and staff
  • The need to create more awareness of the profession
  • Her passion for connecting people both inside and outside of the industry
  • Steps to help find the right fit when hiring
  • The evolution of career paths in the advisory industry
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Yonhee Gordon:

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About Our Guest:

Yonhee Gordon is Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer at JMG Financial Group, an RIA with more than $4 billion in AUM located in suburbs of Chicago. Yonhee is also a principal owner of the firm, a member of its Executive Committee, Board of Directors, and spearheads JMG’s involvement in community service. She focuses her efforts on organizational development to ensure the sustainability of JMG’s long-term operations. Yonhee is a certified financial planner and prior to her current role, she served as a financial advisor to clients at JMG by providing tax and wealth management services. 

Yonhee is a sought-after speaker throughout the industry and is a board member for many organizations including Dominican University, The Foundation for Financial Planning, Charles Schwab’s inaugural DEI Advocacy Board and Almost Home Kids (affiliated with the Anne & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

Outside of business, Yonhee enjoys travelling with her husband and two sons and volunteering for nonprofit organizations that benefit special-needs children. 


Ep 61: Four Pillars of DE&I from the CPF Board’s Center for Financial Planning – With D.A. Abrams



Building a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion program (DEI), can be a daunting task. Leaders understand that it’s so much more than just hiring people that look different from one another.

In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain welcome D.A. Abrams, Managing Director at the CFP Board’s Center for Financial Planning. He identifies four key pillars that are necessary to build and sustain a DE&I program.  D.A. also discusses why this should be a business imperative and how firms of all sizes will benefit over time by acting with intention today. Learn how to gain a competitive edge over other firms that aren’t taking action on DE&I today.

D.A. Abrams discusses: 

  • The mission of the CFP Board’s Center for Financial Planning
  • Four critical pillars of engagement in a DE&I program
  • How to use geography to your advantage when expanding your business
  • Why to invest in career changers
  • Mentorship opportunities through the Center for Financial Planning
  • And more.

Resources: 

Connect with D.A Abrams

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About Our Guest:  

Managing Director, Center for Financial Planning

David Anthony (D.A.) Abrams, CAE joined the CFP Board as Managing Director for the Center for Financial Planning in November 2019. In his role, D.A. is responsible for the following: Cultivating a quality workforce to ensure the profession can recruit and retain the talent it needs to grow; Fostering a more diverse financial planner workforce that reflects the changing demographics in the United States; and Elevating the discipline of financial planning to increase the stature and recognition of financial planning faculty and educational programs and provide practitioners with cutting-edge knowledge to thrive and provide outstanding service to clients.

D.A. is the immediate past Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for the United States Tennis Association (USTA), a position he assumed in February 2012 and concluded prior to joining the CFP Board. During his 26 years with the USTA, D.A. served as the Executive Director and Chief Staff Executive for two (2) of the Association’s 17 Section offices; USTA Eastern, and USTA Missouri Valley.

In addition, D.A. served as the staff member of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee, Hispanic Engagement Advisory Group, National Committee Appointment Process and was chair of the D&I Advisory Group at the USTA. Further, he was the chair of the USTA’s Accreditation Review Committee.

Moreover, D.A. serves as the National Association of Asian American Professionals Board of Directors – Treasurer and is a Board Member of Diversity MBA. Also, D.A. is a former President of the Diversity & Inclusion Sports Consortium.

He played collegiate tennis at Millersville University in Pennsylvania where he earned his undergraduate degree in business administration, concentration – accounting. Subsequently, D.A. earned a master’s degree from Metropolitan State University in Minneapolis, MN. D.A. earned his Certified Association Executive (CAE) credential in 2010.


Ep 59: DE&I as a Strategic Imperative — With Connie Lindsey



Diversity isn’t the end game in DE&I. To create powerful outcomes, leaders need to understand how to create Equity and Inclusion within their firms, which takes strategy, commitment and accountability.  

In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain welcome back Connie Lindsey, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for Northern Trust. Connie discusses why she views DE&I as a strategic imperative. She also shares some misunderstood aspects of DE&I and how leaders can sidestep common pitfalls in order to create powerful outcomes.

Connie Lindsey discusses: 

  • What diversity really means
  • How to apply Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as a strategic imperative
  • Understanding equity and how it differs from equality 
  • The Future of Work and its impact on our industry
  • Building an intentional culture of inclusivity
  • Consumers’ growing demand for DE&I
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Connie Lindsey:

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About Our Guest:

Connie L. Lindsey is Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) at Northern Trust. She is responsible for the design and implementation of the global Corporate Social Responsibility, Community Development and Investments, and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion strategy at Northern Trust. In addition to strategic oversight, she provides leadership to the firm’s response to environmental matters and social issues, within the marketplace, workplace, and community.   

Prior to becoming the Head of CSR and Global DE&I, Ms. Lindsey led client servicing teams in the Corporate & Institutional Services business, serving public fund and not-for-profit clients.  Over the course of her Northern Trust career, she has held a number of leadership roles, including Deputy Business Head in Operations and Technology, Group Head in Wealth Management, Director of Enterprise Relationship Management, and Manager in Treasury Management Consulting and Product Management and holds the Certified Treasury Professional designation.

Ms. Lindsey is a former National Board President of Girl Scouts of the USA, the highest-ranking volunteer of this 2.5 million-member organization. In this role she provided guidance in three vital areas—policy, fund-raising, and leadership.  She was an integral part of the Girl Scout transformation, committed to building and sustaining membership growth and ensuring girls receive a premier leadership development experience.  

Ms. Lindsey serves on several civic and charitable boards to include Leadership Greater Chicago (Board President, 2001 Fellow); McCormick Theological Seminary (Chair of the Board of Trustees); Obama Foundation Inclusion Council (Co-Chair); Chicago Urban League; Executives’ Club of Chicago; and YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago.

Ms. Lindsey received her BA in Finance at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, completed the Harvard Business School Executive Education Corporate Social Responsibility program, and is also a licensed Qualified Administrator of The Intercultural Development Inventory®.  She is a public and motivational speaker on topics of diversity and inclusion, corporate responsibility, leadership, and personal and professional empowerment.


Ep 58: Disrupting With Purpose — With Dana Wilson



Consumers want to work with advisors like them!  That’s according to FlexShares’ most recent DE&I research. But in an advisory industry that is primarily white and male, finding a Black or LatinX advisor can be difficult.  Dana Wilson, Founder and CEO of CHIP (Changing How Individuals Prosper) is working to change that! In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain welcome Dana back to the show to check in on the progress of her fintech firm that matches consumers and advisors of color and the new resources CHIP is providing to build a vibrant new community.

Dana Wilson discusses: 

  • Why building a community of black and brown advisors and consumers is necessary
  • How CHIP matches consumers to advisors who share key cultural characteristics
  • Why trust matters –  and how to build it in communities of color
  • Getting comfortable in sharing your money story
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Dana Wilson:

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About Our Guest:

Dana L. Wilson is the CEO and founder of CHIP (Changing How Individuals Prosper). She has 15+ years of industry experience as a customer-focused financial professional and has received many awards and recognitions, including Inspiring Fintech Females 2020. She demonstrates the ability to build long-lasting client relationships, fosters successful collaborative partnerships, and drives social impact through emerging technologies. 

 


Ep 56: Assess Before Building A Diversity & Inclusion Program – With Kemy Joseph, CEO of F.E.A.R.S Advantage



Assess before you make a mess,” is what Kemy Joseph, CEO and DEI Strategist at F.E.A.R.S. Advantage tells Laura Gregg and David Partain in this episode of The Flexible Advisor.

Kemy talks about the stress that firm leaders face when it comes to the topic of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and why it’s critical that firm leaders understand the current culture that exists within their firm before implementing DEI change. Once existing staff and leaders feel safe, trusted and included, then consider adding other diverse hires in an intentional way to strengthen your firm’s culture. The conversation covers data from FlexShares latest diversity study and how Kemy works with firm leaders identify appropriate goals for their firm’s DEI program that lead to measurable business benefits

Listen to learn: 

  • Why trust is a critical underpinning for building a successful DEI program.
  • Confusion that DEI is just about hiring people of different skin colors or genders
  • The difference between DEI committees and DEI clubs
  • Building a DE&I program based on specific outcomes firms desire
  • The four measures of safety within an organization 
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Kemy Joseph:

Connect With  Laura Gregg: 

Connect With  David Partain: 

About Our Guest:

Kemy Joseph is the CEO and DEI strategist at F.E.A.R.S. Advantage LLC. He works with firm owners and leaders within the financial services space to help them better understand how to create diversity, equity and inclusion programs that will yield results, both business and social. He’s on a mission to help around 5 million business leaders advance equity in their organizations by 2030 to create company culture where people of all backgrounds can work safely and thrive.


Ep 55: Consumer Preferences In Hiring a Financial Planner — With Dr. Miranda Reiter, CFP®, Texas Tech University



What’s most important when choosing a financial planner?  Does race and gender outweigh other characteristics like age, years of experience or levels of trust?

Dr. Miranda Reiter, CFP®, from Texas Tech University, is studying this topic and shares her findings on what’s most important to consumers. Listen as Laura Gregg and David Partain compare and contrast data with Dr. Reiter’s about her work and the FlexShares’ 2021 study on diversity in advisory. Where were findings similar and where did they diverge and why? 

Topics covered: 

  • Dr. Reiter’s journey from banker to financial planner and entrepreneur to college professor.
  • What sparked her curiosity to study the impact of race and gender in hiring a planner?
  • Where does trust rank in the decision process?
  • How planning students are engaging in digital advisor technology
  • Covid’s impact on virtual engagements and reach in finding a planner
  • Why to consider improving your cultural competency
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Dr. Miranda Reiter

Connect With  Laura Gregg

Connect With David Partain

About Our Guest:

Miranda Reiter, CFP® is an assistant professor of financial planning at Texas Tech University. Her research interests in financial planning and consumer finance include race, diversity, and gender issues. She has worked as a financial planner and a banker at several Fortune 500 firms. Miranda recently received recognition for her work including 2020 Omicron Nu Research Fellowship, 2020 Center for Financial Security Junior Scholar, 2019 Financial Planning Association Best Research Award and 2019 Under 40 Award!