A few weeks ago, the profession’s brightest and boldest young planners gathered in Naperville, Illinois to learn what it was like To Think… Like a CFP® as a community. It was humbling and inspiring. This was my 5th gathering and I’ll be sad if it’s my last.
I was able to see my sister, Natalie Wagner, and see her phenomenal Vital Financials work in action. It’s been exciting to see it well received the last few times I’ve seen her present. She’s onto something really special. It’s really cool to see how she has inherited dad’s genius, but has discovered her own mastery and application.
The Spirit of FPA NexGen
It felt great to be around kindred spirits. Some old, some new and a few usual suspects. I love these people. They have been a huge inspiration in why I’m doing this work. I appreciate being able to visit with my core supporters (thanks guys!!) I am grateful to the of the professional community that has inspired me to me be here today.
I’m awestruck and humbled to see the gravity that this group brings to the planning profession. Both how much this work means to them and how seriously they took the charge of what it means to guide people in their financial decisions. So many voices took the responsibility on and voiced their perspective on the profession.
I feel that *my* life’s purpose is to help the public get good financial advice by helping planners to their job better. When I’m in the room with members of NexGen I feel like birds of a feather taking flight. I was also humbled, awestruck and appreciative of my good friends Elizabeth Jetton and Hannah Moore guiding the weekend to make it one of the most productive Gatherings yet.
Folks have remarked for years that one of the most likely outcomes of the annual FPA NexGen Gathering is to start your own firm or take a serious pivot in your career. Since I own my own firm already, it was a little different.
I’m excited to move advance the Digital Marketing 4FP agency’s mission forward because of what I learned from my community at this year’s FPA NexGen Gathering. As a huge change to *my business* as a result of FPA NexGen is that I am letting go of Wagner Communication Systems as my brand and consolidating everything into Digital Marketing 4FP, LLC.
In a number of ways, not much will change. I’ll still offer ComConnect File Sync, to compliment my digital marketing services; but this feels much more in line with my purpose and stewardship for the community.
It won’t be overnight, I need to ensure my clients are served first; but this feels great and like the right decision. There are many reasons, a number of them revolving around brand management and tax implications from moving my business from Colorado to Oregon.
I’ve changed this website’s background and a few other details to celebrate this pivot and new approach. Please let me know what you think.
Besides FPA NexGen, it was also great to see Chicago. My first internship out of college was with what was a small RIA in the downtown “loop.” They’ve grown a lot in the last 15 years, which is great to see. I was also able to relive my childhood a little bit by visiting my uncle who lives just outside the city. The most interesting experience though was that I was able to meet up with Brad Treks America. We traded bags and walked up Michigan Ave for a little while. This wasn’t and could have never been planned.
One very special thing about this year’s FPA NexGen Gathering was sharing dad’s wisdom and find some answers about how to share his legacy in a way that is in integrity with his vision. I was also able to break into some new territory and have a session devoted to Finology.
I was nervous, but it went extremely well and I’m looking forward to the next one. I’m building exercises to share that will demonstrate the topic and why it’s been so hard to identify.
The biggest takeaway I had from the session is to let you and other folks know when I talk about “What is Finology?” that I mean this as a question. I don’t pretend to have the answers and neither did dad. We both have ideas, which I will share for both of us, but I’m not here to tell people how this “should be done.”
Finology is a new area of study and it needs your and our inquiry to understand it better. I am starting the What is Finology? discussion and invite you to join it. I expect to discover and define the subject’s structure and method. I expect that we deal with the nuance daily but are barely conscious of it.
Also, because too many people want to connect the subject of Finology to Behavior Finance. It’s related. We get emotional when we think about money and when we use it, but Behavioral Finance is an aspect of psychology, not finology.
I’m really excited to see what’s next. The talent and passion of the FPA NexGen community is only growing, and it was already amazing. I feel fortunate to be influenced by this group of people. It’s an honor to see them learn about dad’s take on the profession and for them to not only accept that charge, but to be passionate and eager to run with it.
I’m looking forward to it and hope to contribute to that passion.