Tag Archives: The Flexible Advisor

Ep 63: Empowering Women Through Difficult Transitions — With Stacy Francis



Many women experience major life transitions like divorce or widowhood. As an advisor, you can be a key support pillar for your clients by educating and empowering them to make informed financial decisions, even during difficult times.

In this episode, Stacy Francis, President and CEO of Francis Financial and Founder of Savvy Ladies, joins Laura Gregg and David Partain to share strategies that financial advisors can use to assist and support women as they navigate the financial implications of life transitions.

Stacy Francis discusses: 

  • Her ‘why’ for building a firm focused on helping women through transition
  • How being vulnerable as an advisor can help build trust with clients
  • The number one quality women going through a divorce look for in an advisor 
  • Unveiling the Unspoken Truth, her research on women, money and divorce 
  • Resources to serve women experiencing financial and emotional transitions

Resources: 

Connect With Stacy Francis:

Connect With  Laura Gregg: 

Connect With  David Partain: 

About Our Guest: 

Stacy Francis, CFP®, CDFA®, CES™

Stacy is the President and CEO of Francis Financial, a fee-only boutique wealth management, financial planning and divorce financial planning firm dedicated to providing ongoing comprehensive advice for successful individuals, couples, and women in transition such as divorce or widowhood. She is a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®), Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® (CDFA®), and Certified Estate and Trust Specialist (CES™) with over 20 years of experience in the financial industry. She has mastered specialized training in the financial issues of divorce and is the Director of the Association of Divorce Financial Planners (ADFP) Greater New York Metro Chapter. Stacy is also the founder of Savvy Ladies™, a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating and empowering women to take control of their finances. 

She is a nationally-recognized financial expert featured on CNBC’s Digital Financial Advisor Council, the Forbes Finance Council, Kiplinger, and The Wall Street Journal. Stacy is the host of Financially Ever After, a podcast focusing on women, money and divorce. She is also the author of the white paper, Unveiling the Unspoken Truth: The Financial Challenges Women Face During and After Divorce


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:

Connect With  Laura Gregg: 

Connect With  David Partain: 

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 60: Savvy Ladies – Help a Woman in Just One Hour a Month – With Judy Herbst



Savvy Ladies strives to empower women by providing free financial literacy education to all women, regardless of age or income level. The nonprofit has helped more than 20,000 women of varied-backgrounds through their volunteer network of financial planners that answer key questions during times of transition which has helped put women on the path to financial literacy and security. 

In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain speak with Judy Herbst, Executive Director of Savvy Ladies to learn about the organization and how financial professionals from across the country are helping women create better financial outcomes for themselves and their families. 

Judy Herbst discusses: 

  • The history of Savvy Ladies 
  • Who Savvy Ladies serves and how its mission has grown
  • How advisors are making an impact in women’s lives
  • The new community of financial professionals growing from this work
  • Virtual engagements makes volunteering less time consuming 
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Judy Herbst: 

Connect With  Laura Gregg: 

Connect With  David Partain: 

About Our Guest:

Judy Herbst is the executive director of Savvy Ladies. She has over 20 years of relationship-building experience working with iconic brands such as Tiffany & Co, American Girl, and Worthy.com. Judy develops astounding programs and initiatives that educate and raise awareness about important issues affecting women, parents, and families.

She comes to Savvy Ladies with great knowledge and experience working with women throughout her career and brings her business acumen and creative, marketing & client relationship savviness along with her proven success record in developing, driving and executing business growth initiatives. 


Ep 57: Guiding Suddenly Single Women – With Steph Wagner



While divorce rates have decreased over the last 20 years according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the rates of divorce among baby boomers are increasing. Because family wealth tends to be much higher at this age, these divorces may present complex problems for clients.

In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain speak with Steph Wagner, Director of Women and Wealth at Northern Trust. They explore the meaningful impact that advisors can make – both financially and emotionally — when guiding women through major life changes and steps,  advisors can take proactively to ensure couples are prepared for any unexpected transitions. 

Steph shares: 

  • Her own story of working through an unexpected transition
  • The risk of giving up your seat at the family financial table
  • The power story telling has on igniting conversations of hypothetical events
  • What to do if there appears to be financial infidelity in a relationship
  • Things to consider when a family business is involved
  • What to do – and not to do – when helping clients through a transition
  • And more

Resources: 

Connect With Steph Wagner:

Connect With  Laura Gregg: 

Connect With  David Partain: 

About Our Guest:

Steph Wagner, director of Women and Wealth at Northern Trust Corporation, has long advocated for women who find themselves single due to divorce or the loss of their spouse. She leads the firm’s advisory practice for women who are facing unexpected transitions and oversees our women’s initiative by elevating women. Over the years, Steph has developed a specialized expertise in utilizing financial strategies and empowering women with the resources they need to become effective stewards of their own wealth. She has worked extensively with women across the country to help them address the financial impact of widowhood, to secure equitable settlements, and marriage disillusions. And she has helped them establish a solid foundation for their next chapter


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! 


Ep 50: FPA’s NexGen and LGBTQ Outreach — With Joey Stemmle, President, FPA NexGen



The Financial Planning Association (FPA) is taking action to drive change in our industry through both its NexGen and Pride Planners programs. 

In this episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain speak with FPA NexGen President Joey Stemmle about his new leadership role and what he hopes to accomplish. He also talks about the growth of the FPA’s Pride Planners and how it is helping advisory firms create more inclusive environments for LGBTQ employees and clients. 

In this episode, you will learn:

  • How the FPA is working to change the financial planning landscape
  • The ways different generations can learn from one another 
  • Why an inclusive workplace can support talent retention and client acquisition  
  • What companies should be doing to assist the new generation of advisors  
  • And more!

Tune in to discover how the new generation of advisors is going to change the industry — and what employers should be doing to help them along the way! 

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Resources: FlexShares Exchange Traded Funds | Laura Gregg | David Partain | Joseph Stemmle | FPA NexGen | FPA Diversity and Inclusion | FPA Chapters


Ep 49: Conquering Stress: Harnessing the Power of Your Anxiety — With Dr. Chloe Carmichael



Advisors are stressed, and female advisors report the higher levels of stress. But is that necessarily bad?

This is the second in a series of episodes focused on Advisor Wellness where we talk with experts who provide tips to help you manage your health and wellbeing. In this episode we speak with Dr. Chloe Carmichael, a clinical psychologist whose private practice in New York City focuses on stress management, relationship issues, self-esteem and coaching.  Dr. Chloe is the author of the recently published book, Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety. 

Laura Gregg, David Partain and Dr. Chloe explore what’s behind advisor stress and anxiety and why reporting being stressed may actually be a sign of good mental health. Dr. Chloe offers tips for women – and all advisors feeling overwhelmed — on how to ask for help and get it.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • You’re stressed out.  Now what?
  • Are women really more stressed than men?
  • Powerful words to use when asking for help.
  • How to harness the power of your anxiety.
  • Tips for leaders to help teams navigate uncertainty.
  • And more!

Tune in today to discover how to effectively channel your stress and anxiety in ways that will help your business and relationships!

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Dr. Chloe Carmichael holds a doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Long Island University. Her private practice focuses on stress management, relationship issues, self esteem, and coaching. Dr. Carmichael sees clients in her Manhattan office or via video. She is the author of Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of  Your Anxiety (in press, Macmillan, 2021)

Resources: FlexShares Exchange Traded Funds | Laura Gregg | David Partain | Dr. Chloe | Connect with Dr. Chloe Carmichael on LinkedIn | Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety


Ep 48: Conquering Stress and Coming Back Stronger — with Dr. Jack Singer



As an advisor, you work hard to lessen your clients’ financial stress. But, how can you reduce and manage your own stress to prevent burnout? 

This is the first in a series of episodes focused on Advisor Wellness where we talk with experts who provide tips to help you manage your health and wellbeing. In this episode we speak with Dr. Jack Singer, PhD., a clinical/sports and organizational psychologist who authored The Financial Advisor’s Ultimate Stress Mastery Guide. Listen for his easy-to-implement behavioral changes that can help advisors boost their psychological immunity.  

In this episode, you will learn:

  • How financial advisors are similar to professional athletes
  • Ways Dr. Jack coaches advisors around their unique stressors
  • Tips for adjusting your mindset and behavioral patterns 
  • How to recognize toxic self-talk — and what you can do to prevent it
  • And more!

Tune in today for tips and strategies on preventing stress and burnout! 

Resources: FlexShares Exchange Traded Funds | Laura Gregg | David Partain | Resources on Advisor Wellness | Connect with Dr .Jack Singer on LinkedIn | The Financial Advisor’s Ultimate Stress Mastery Guide | Dr. Jack Singer Email


Ep 47: Growing the Practice of Your Dreams — With Rita Robbins



Build the business of your dreams while serving clients with integrity, creativity, and compassion!

In this exciting episode, Laura Gregg and David Partain sit down with Rita Robbins, Founder of Affiliated Advisors. As one of the first women to launch an Super OSJ (Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction) and a consultant who leads more than 85 advisors across the country, Rita shares how she’s helping advisors better grow their business using social media strategies, succession planning, forward-thinking problem solving, and more.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • Success stories of advisors who Rita has helped fine-tune and grow their business
  • Advisor characteristics that lead to success
  • How Rita’s unexpected lavender farm purchase is helping a new crop of small business owners 
  • Why the advisory industry lacks women — and what we can do to change this 
  • And more!

Listen in to learn about Affiliated Advisors and Rita’s mission to help you grow your business! 

Resources: FlexShares Exchange Traded Funds | Laura Gregg | David Partain | Connect with Rita Robbins on LinkedIn | Affiliated Advisors