Did you know your financial health may affect your business success? First Financial Security leader Amy Nitao shares tips to financial savviness.
If you ask 10 people to define financial savviness, you’ll likely to get 10 different answers. It was an important question for me to answer for myself. I believe financial savviness is the core reason for my success here at FFS.
My definition of practical know-how is linked to our company’s vision to help all people achieve financial security and peace of mind. You must be able to confidently guide your clients down the path to a more secure financial future.
Practice what You Preach
As a leader, the way to help others to manage their financial health is to have already experienced the challenges, failures and successes yourself. We must practice what we preach. If we want to be trusted with other people’s finances, we must be diligent, careful and strategic with our own.
Would you hire an actor to be the CEO of your business? No, you’d hire a proven, experienced, and qualified candidate who will guide your company in the right direction. The same applies in our business. We must be financially savvy and share that information with our clients. By applying it to our own lives, we can serve as a trusted role model.
Your Actions Speak Loudly
I gained a reputation for being financially savvy years ago, but that’s only because it’s part of my everyday life. For example, my friends would come to visit us in California and want to visit Disneyland, but we’d never pay full price. I knew where to find discount tickets! I’m always showing people that I know how to manage my money well and protect my family’s finances. Ask any of them and they would say, “Yes, I would trust her with my money.”
If you’re grappling with debt and wasteful with your money, you’re sending the message that you’ll probably be just as careless with someone else’s money.
In our business, it’s also critical to set goals. My first goal was to qualify for the FFS Dream Destination Conference trip to Puerto Rico. But, more than that, I wanted to earn a suite.
I shared this goal with my team because I wanted to be held accountable. Within three months of joining FFS – before my first Jump Start meeting - I achieved it. I set short- and long-term goals and once I reached them, I set new ones. I’m never done.
Our financial goals are important because they are our everyday GPS. They guide our decisions and our plans, reminding us of what we’re working toward. More importantly, they help us to not lose sight of the important achievements we’ve set for ourselves and our family. We want peace of mind not only for our generation, but hopefully for many more of generations to come.
Once you’ve set your goals, they don’t go in a drawer only to be looked at again in six months. Put an action plan together and review it weekly or bi-weekly.
I have a conversation with my husband on the 1st and the 15th of every month. We discuss our budget, which helps us manage our spending, savings and charitable donations for the month. We know what we have and we live within our means. If you don’t know how much you have, how can you possibly know much or little is available to spend? That’s where you run into trouble.
Make a pact with your partner to communicate the successes and the challenges along the way. When you know what you’re working toward, there’s a stronger focus. When you have someone working with you, there’s always more encouragement, motivation, and support.
Keep Moving Forward
It doesn’t happen overnight, but I can tell you that it can happen. I am living proof. It takes time, dedication, patience, failures and successes. The important thing is that you pick yourself up and keep going – and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your financial health will benefit, your clients will benefit, and your business will benefit.
About the Author:
As one of FFS’ top producers, Amy Nitao has earned FFS’ Success Society, 75K Club, and Champions Club. In fact, she attained her spot in Champions Club more quickly than any other associate to date. Amy passed the $100,000 cash flow mark less than a year after joining First Financial Security. When asked what spurs her on to these incredible milestones, Amy replied, “Love for my family.”