We're talking with Hannah Moore, the founder of Guiding Wealth who does more interesting things than almost anybody else in the wealth management business.
Listening to this episode will help you realize the value of financial planning program and how is it more than numbers and spreadsheets. You will learn a lot about financial planning and building wealth that will bring clarity to a situation, provide a directional simplicity, and offers your clients conﬁdence in their decisions.
As a Certified Financial Planner(TM) professional, Hannah believes in client-first financial planning and supporting new financial planners as they build their careers.
She founded her firm, Guiding Wealth, on the belief that getting access to financial advisement should not be complicated— and that it should be a process that embodies clarity, simplicity and confidence. She also believes in helping other financial planners offer accessible and impactful financial planning.
Winner of the 2020 Visionary Leader Award for her work creating a virtual externship for nearly 2,000 new financial planners.
Narrator: Welcome to Cracking the Cash Flow Code where you'll learn what it takes to create enough cash to fill the four buckets of profit. You'll learn what it takes to have enough cash for a great lifestyle, have enough cash for when emergency strikes, fully fund a growth program, and fund your retirement program. When you do this, you will have a sale‑ready company that will allow you to keep or sell your business. This allows you to do what you want with your business, when you want, in the way you want.
In Cracking the Cash Flow Code, we focus on the four areas of business that let you take your successful business and make it economically and personally sustainable. Your host, Josh Patrick, is going to help us through finding great thought leaders as well as providing insights he's learned through his 40 years of owning, running, planning, and thinking about what it takes to make a successful business sustainable and allow you to be free of cash flow worries.
Josh Patrick: Hey, how are you today? This is Josh Patrick. And you're at Cracking the Cash Flow Code.
And today, my guest is Hannah Moore. And Hannah is the founder of Guiding Wealth. And she does more interesting things than almost anybody else in the wealth management business.
Now, I know you are listening. You're saying, “What does a wealth management person to have to do with blue‑collar businesses?” Well, the truth is I have found there's been some really good cross pollination ideas you get from other industries. And you need to hear from the leaders and the people who are doing the most interesting thing in any industry because you can apply it to your business. And Hannah is one of the most capable, interesting, and captivating people I know. So, I know this is going to be a great session for a change. So, let's bring Hannah on.
Hey, Hannah. How are you today?
Hannah Moore: I'm doing well. Thank you for that introduction, Josh. I feel like I have a lot to live up to now.
Josh: Nah, you'll blow it away. I'm confident of that.
So, Hannah, you've put together this externship program with the Financial Planning Association, I think?
Hannah: Yes. Yep.
Josh: So, how did that come about and how many people do you have involved in this thing?
Hannah: Yes, absolutely.
So, last year, so I was consulting with the Financial Planning Association. I was their kind of new planner. Everything that touched new planner, I was helping them, advising them on it. And we saw the pandemic, you know, just like everybody was coming in, and we were just like, “Okay. How can we help? There are so many problems here, where can we really step in and fill a need?”
And so, what we saw was we started hearing students who were losing their internships. We started hearing from professors who were saying, “I don't know what to do. My students - all these internships are getting lost. What do we do?”
And so, we really stepped in and said, “Okay. What if we could really do something here?” You know, we had the idea of, you know, pairing them with our member firms but quickly realized our member firms were dropping their internships as well. And so, we said, “Okay. Let's go back to the drawing board.” We were in a couple focus groups with students and we said, “Okay. What is it about an internship experience that is so valuable, that was so critical to the development of the students and professionals?” And so, we really started writing that down.
We realized we were never going to be able to replace that in‑person, one‑on‑one experience. But, as we looked at it, we started realizing that all the other elements that somebody gets in an internship experience, we could recreate virtually and at scale. And so, we started, we found this crazy pathway of saying, “Wait a minute. Is this possible? Could we do this?” And so, we just said, “Okay. Let's go for it. Let's just shoot our shot. And let's go for it.”
And so, we opened up the doors. Honestly, we didn't know what we were doing. We joke that we were building this rocket ship as it was going up. And so, we opened the doors to this externship at the very beginning of May 2020. And we had no idea who was going to be-- who would be responding, you know, what this would look like.
And we realized, very quickly, within the first two days, we had over 100 students sign up from this program. And so, we had it open for about three weeks. Registration was open for about three weeks. Now, in that three weeks-- it was a free program. I don't know if you've run any free programs. Putting any dollar kind of creates a barrier on that. We had over 1900 students initially sign up for the program, about 1100 of them were actually engaged at various levels. There was really about between 900 and a thousand that were like really active in this externship program.
But we basically recreated this internship experience for them. There's a lot from an education standpoint because we realized that our audience was much bigger, right? We thought we were solving this problem for like students who had lost their internship. So, we thought we were talking to, you know, juniors and seniors at college, you know, in a financial planning program. But what we realized was that we were solving for a much bigger problem. It was really access to financial planning where all these financial-- nobody you could see financial planning. They had to go through years of education. They had to go through tens of thousands of dollars of that education. And we were offering a way to get a glimpse into what it was to be a financial planner.
So, we found a stay‑at‑home moms. We found many career changers. We found, you know, a lot of students from across the country. We got into over 200 different universities. And we had high school students. How crazy is that? We had high school students who were joining this program.
So, we had to change the design, you know, the learning design of that. But we really created this experience for students. So, they came in. They got basically the tech stack of a financial planning firm, the financial planning documents. We brought in experts. We were able to tap into the massive network of the FPA (Financial Planning Association).
So, every week, we are bringing in, you know, three planners who are sharing how they do a specific area of planning. We are giving those assignments to students. So, they were doing all the work as if they were in an internship but for a lot of different firms and for a lot of different people.
So, one of the big benefits of working in an internship is they want to know what career path to go down. So now we were able to show them not just one career path but many. And then they could really decide from that from that space as well.
So, it was a whirlwind. So, we ended-- so that was in, you know, 2020, you know, at the height of the pandemic, where we were really providing this resource for students, and career changers, and everybody who really wanted a glimpse into the externship.
So, fast forward to this year, 2021, I had a baby in the middle somewhere in there. And 2021, we had 940 people sign up for this program, again, this year. So, it is really-- you know, we charge for it again this year versus last year. It was really just a free offering just because we just knew that there was so much need in this space. So that's, yeah, a little bit of the externship.
Josh: So, you were partnering with a trade association?
Josh: And I'm going to bet that our blue‑collar business owners who are listening to this podcast are probably members of a trade association. Would that make sense to you?
Hannah: Oh, absolutely. Yep.
Josh: Yeah. So, I would bet they're members of a trade association.
So, here's a question I have for those who are listening. What can you do with your trade association that gets more people interested in your industry? Because, I mean, what Hannah is talking about, in the past two years, she has trained 2500 people to join the wealth management world. Now, what's the biggest problem that we are facing that I keep hearing over, and over, and over again? Do you know, Hannah?
Hannah: Oh, I hear a lot of problems. I'm curious, is it developing young talent?
Josh: It's getting people to come to work for you.
Hannah: Yeah, absolutely.
Josh: We have a huge labor shortage based on demographic issues.
So, Hannah’s doing two things. One is she's making the industry better. Two, as she's doing a bunch of stuff, she's making her business better - a lot better. You take a thousand people times $195 a piece that's starting to get to be real money. And the third thing she's doing is she's developing a labor pool who can go into an industry that desperately, and I mean desperately, needs young people joining it because most the people in the industry are old people like me. So, she's doing that for her industry.
So, I'm going to challenge you, who are listening. Call your trade association up. See if you can do an externship program. And if you're really brave, do a training program that actually might create some new people to join your business. So instead of going on and teaching old people like me how to run a business, why don't you to think about young people, like Hannah to run the business? And Hannah’s just a star at that.
So, Hannah just mentioned something as in the side while she was developing this gigantic course in this huge offering for a whole bunch of people. What she did was her and her husband - and it wasn't a big team, she went on maternity leave. So, Hannah, how did you manage both?
Hannah: Oh, my gosh. I don't even know. No. I do know.
You know, it's one of the things that I don't hear talked about a lot, right? I always hear, you know, especially in my circles, women especially talk about how it's a detriment to your business. And I see the exact opposite of maternity leave. It's forced me to be a better business owner.
And so, when I think about it, think about any business. Every consultant out there would basically say, if you can make yourself replaceable for three months in your business, like you are going to run a better business. And so, that's really what you have to do with maternity leave.
So twice, now, I've been faced with being out of my business for three months and figuring out how is my business going to continue to run and figuring it out. So, we've ended up hiring support for me. We ended up hiring an executive assistant for me who manages now-- she manages all of my emails, household stuff as well just kind of just overall helping me in all areas of my life because, being a business owner for multiple businesses, as well as having two young children and being married, it's a lot. And so just realizing like I needed help and hiring for it, and not being afraid of hiring for it.
And I'll tell you, both years that my daughters have been born have been my biggest growth years of my business which is completely counterintuitive. My wealth management practice grew almost 20% in the three months that I was out for maternity leave, like it was just crazy.
But it's really, you know, setting up the systems that, you know, everybody says you should have but you never get around to it. But, you know, when you're forced to be out for three months, you get around to it, and you figure how to do it so I could spend time with my baby and not here in the office.
Josh: That makes a ton--
I mean, I'm not even sure if it was really counterintuitive. You actually sit down and think about this. If you're forced to leave your business for three months, I mean, I wasn't three months, I was three years when I went through my cancer stuff, where I was basically useless for about three years.
But if you set your business up where it can run without you on a day‑to‑day basis, not strategically but tactically, what you're doing is you're creating a whole bunch of space for good things to happen in your business that don't happen if you're just busy, busy, busy, busy, busy running from one thing to another and putting out one fire after another.
The other thing I think that you may have learned, I'm interested to hear you on this is that, I bet your attitude about, you know, these little fires that prop up changed over that three‑month period.
Hannah: Oh, absolutely. I mean, I was just on a call with my executive assistant right before this call. And we were just going through the emails. And I'm like not-- you know, what I'm willing to hand off now is so much more than what I was willing to hand off before just because I don't have time. I don't have the energy for it. And I know that my time is best spent doing other things.
Josh: So, Hannah, when you were training your assistant, I'm assuming she didn't do everything perfectly out of the box.
Josh: Am I correct in that?
Hannah: Oh, yes.
Josh: So, when she screwed things up, how did you handle that?
Hannah: We do a lot of things together. So, we just hired somebody else new in my firm. I realized that I work best-- I do not work well if I have a whole task list that I have to just go do. So, what we're trying to do, for basically all of my tasks, I'm doing it with somebody else in the room with me. So, I'm providing that immediate feedback to them until I'm not needed anymore. So that's what we're doing.
The other piece that I've been-- you know, again, I'm all about hiring for my weaknesses. And you probably know that EOS, kind of that visionary integrator. I hired an integrator. She works with female online entrepreneurs, if you will. And so, she runs all of my processes, all of my Asana. She manages all of our team for all of the day‑to‑day things.
So, we use an app called Voxer. So, it's a walkie talkie app because-- I mean, Josh, you know me. I get ideas all the time. And so, I'll like Voxer her and be like, “Hey, so I had this great new idea of what we're going to do. And dadadada.” And she'll be able to capture all that. And then, we meet again. And then we go through and prioritize. And we really work on-- and then, she takes those items. She maps out the steps. And then, she hands them off to the team members. And then, she supervises that. Her job is to make sure things get done. So, that's kind of the other big secret to a lot of what we've done in order to really kind of make things happen and get things across the finish line because I was good at doing a lot of things. But what I needed to be good at was finishing things. And so, bringing her on helped me finish those things.
Josh: Yeah. For those who don't know what EOS means, it stands for entrepreneurial operating system. It was developed by a guy named Gino Wickman. And the book you want to read about that is a book called Traction. I have mentioned that book about 10,000 times. I think it is the one book you have to read if you own your own business, even more than my two books, but you should read that one book because it's a really good one.
So, Hannah, did you hire an EOS consultant work with you?
Hannah: No. We haven't done that. We haven't been-- I mean, we haven't-- I don't know that we're at this side. Maybe we are. At this point, I don't even know. But we haven't done that yet.
Josh: I don't think there's any reason. You're doing what Gino recommends. And, you know, if you can implement it yourself there's no reason to go and hire someone to do it for you is my attitude about that.
So, you have an integrator who is responsible for the day‑to‑day operations of your business, correct?
Hannah: Yes. So, we have two different businesses. We have my practice. So she she'll do like the marketing stuff for my practice, not the day‑to‑day. And then, we have kind of our planner education kind of business. Our consulting firm, if you will. And so, she does the consulting firm. That's really where her space is. But yes.
Josh: Yeah. Yeah, that’s a really cool thing.
So, you're an expert. You developed a thing called Money Blocks which I think is a really interesting little tool for personal financial planning. And, a little bit later, I want you to tell people how to get that because I think it's useful for people who own blue‑collar businesses. You know, the truth is, most people who run businesses are really bad around their money. And it's not necessarily money scripts that make them bad around their money. It's just they've never had any training on how to handle money. And, you know, we all know the statistics that somewhere between 50% and 80% of businesses fail in the first five years. And I'll submit that the reason that businesses fail in the first five years is because they run out of cash, not because they don't have good ideas.
So, you've been working with people to sort of, you know, learn to get their arms around money and not be scared of it. How do you go about doing that?
Hannah: I say it's listening well. You know, nobody wants to be bad at their money, right? There's usually like a reason why. You know, I'll tell you, for me, like I'm so busy, you know. And so, again, it's more of how do we align-- you know, as financial planners, you know, the question I'm always thinking is, “How do we align what we're doing with how the client’s already naturally wired.”
And for so many years, it's been all about, you know, spreadsheets. It's been, you know, people who are great financial planners tend to think about money in a certain way. And people who aren't financial planners don't think about money that same way. So, for me, it's really, “How do we listen well to our clients and our customers and listen when they're struggling with things?”
And that's really kind of how these BudgetingBlocks™ came about. It was recognizing that my clients weren't understanding what I was doing. And I was doing the best practice of what my field says to do on budgeting. And it wasn't registering. And so, that's where I was like, “Okay. What could we do differently?” And that's really how these BudgetingBlocks™ came about. And it's just a different way to view your money.
And I'll tell you, it just clicks with people. People just see it and they're like, “Oh, I get it for the first time.” And so, that's really, you know, kind of what we're doing on this.
Josh: So, you've talked about the importance of starting with values and how you view your financial life. What does that mean?
Hannah: Oh, my gosh. I think it's so important.
Yes. So, it's, “What is the filter?” So, from a business owner standpoint, I've been going back to my values. They're on my computer screen here. I look at them every day. It's, “What are the values?” It’s basically your decision filter? “What's my decision filter with my business, with my life, with everything that I'm doing?” So, it's really what guides you.
So, you know, I think of Marie Kondo who came out, you know, talking about, you know, everything in your home should bring you joy. I say every dollar you spend should be bringing you joy as maybe silly or crazy as that sounds to some people. But, really, when we align our money with our values, we're going to be spending money different than the people around you. You're going to be prioritizing things different. But you're also going to be getting value out of all these dollars that you spend and you're going to be much more aware of your money - aware of what's happening.
So, oftentimes, I’ll have clients identify just their five core values-- you know, five to seven core values just in their life. And then, we look at--
Josh: By the way, I have to interrupt you.
Josh: Can't have seven values.
Josh: Too many. You can't keep track of ‘em, five maximum.
Hannah: I love it. I'm looking at my-- I have six on my sheet. I could probably combine some. But, yeah. Okay.
Yeah. So, you have the five values. And then you look at how did you spend your money? And then you reflect on this. Are there areas where you're spending money, where it doesn't bring you joy? Where you're just like, “What am I doing?” That usually is an indicator that maybe there's a system in your life that's different.
So, like for us, personally, very practical, you're talking to business owners here so you guys get this. Our eating out was like way high. But it was all convenience because we're busy, we don't have any systems in place, and it was just basically like, “Oh, shoot. It's two o'clock in the afternoon and I'm hungry. Let's go get some food.” None of that was bringing joy to my life, right? None of that was aligned with kind of what was, you know, intentional.
And so, what we did is we ended up working with my executive assistant who now orders groceries for the office every week. And so, we have healthy food here for us to eat. It’s under a certain amount of time. And it's just taking that stress out of our money.
And so, there's lots of examples of what you can do on that. But what's most important to you, if you're married or you have a partner, “What's most important to your partner?” and then bringing those together because your money tells a story, right?
That whole adage, you know, you show me your checkbook, I'll show you what's important to you. It's so true. But when we really look at our money through our values, we're able just to really see, you know, what's driving you? And then, you know, are there systems that you can create? Is there a better way that you could be, you know, approaching your money that really brings more fulfillment to your life? And so that's really kind of the filter with the BudgetingBlocks™ that we've added.
Josh: So, I'm going to just tell you that values for your money is really important, no question about that, but you need to take those same values and implement them in your business.
Hannah: Mm-hmm, 100%.
Josh: And here's something else about values which most people don't know. Values are not about the word “yes.” It's actually about the word “no.” Meaning that once you've articulated your values-- and this is really true with money values. And it's also true for business values, is that once I know what my values are, we say yes to way too many things and we don't say no to enough things.
But if your values led around your money, you're going to know what to say yes to and you're going to know what to say no to. And that bright, shiny object that’s staring at you to face might become a no a lot more than they used to be in the past. Does that make sense, Hannah?
Hannah: Oh, absolutely.
I'll tell you, with the externship, and, I mean, just having-- you know, training all these-- you know, these students and these career changers, you know, we've had so many opportunities on our way. And it's been really interesting, you know, as we've been going through this, you know. And some of them, I'm a big like, I'm like a sleep‑on‑it‑type person. You know, some of them just felt amazing, right? And some of them were just-- you know, some of them were easy no's. And some of them were just like, “Oh, my gosh, this is so exciting,” you know.
But as we've looked at, really, what do we say yes to? You know, we went back to our values. We went back to our vision statement. We went back to our values. And it has become so crystal clear about where we want to go with our businesses, with our education programs, with everything. And it's not what anybody's brought to us, right? Like, we're going to be creating our own path because it's really what's core to us. And, you know--
And that's made just a huge difference. It’s impacting our hiring. It's impacting just everything that we're doing right now. And there's nothing to show for it yet. You know, obviously, those things take time. But, yeah, it's been huge, huge. And I have so much confidence in knowing that we're going in the right direction because I'm so clear on what our vision is and what our values are.
Josh: Yeah. That's been my experience over the years is that once you develop your values and start living them, in a business, it's easy to figure out what you should be doing and what you shouldn't be doing. And it becomes an unbelievably good tool for managing the people you're working with to help them figure out whether they're doing the right stuff or not.
Hannah: Yep, absolutely.
Josh: So, Hannah, unfortunately, we are running out of time. And you have like 9000 different things you're doing. So, why don't you talk about a few of ’em and tell people how they can get more information if they want it?
Hannah: Yeah, absolutely.
Well, we have our BudgetingBlocks™. If you go to everydaymoney.com, you can see them there. So, if you're struggling with money - you are exactly who we're targeting, of your day‑to‑day finances or not sure how they interact with, you know, your business finances. I work with some business owners where they're like, “Yeah. We’ve got that figured out, but we don't know where our personal finances fit in with all this.” So, it's great for that - for people who struggle to talk about money or don't talk about money.
If you're interested in becoming a career changer and financial planner, check out the externship, fpaexternship.org would be the other place to go to for that.
Josh: And how would people find Hannah, if they want to talk to Hannah?
Hannah: Yeah. So, my practice, Guiding Wealth. Thank you, Josh. www.guidingwealth.com is my practice there. You can also reach me on LinkedIn. I'm a little bit slow to reply on LinkedIn. But, yeah, definitely my practice, www.guidingwealth.com. There's a contact button there that you can reach out to me that way.
And there's two things that I would like you to do. The first I ask after every single podcast I ever do, which is I would really, really, really, really really like it if you would go to wherever you're listening this podcast and leave us an honest rating and review. If you love us, you can give us five stars and say how great we are. And if you hate us, which I hope you don't, I might have to cry a little bit if you do. But, if you hate us, you can say that too. But please, please give us an honest rating and review. It’s just so important.
And the second thing I'd like you to do is I just recently released my second book. It’s called The Sale Ready Company that continues the journey of the Aardvark family. And John Aardvark is now thinking about it's time to transition out of his business and there's all sorts of questions that he has. And there are things that he has to take advantage of. Some of them are easy. Many of them are really difficult. One was death defying. It was my favorite part of the book to write and I'm not going to tell you about it because it'll break the surprise.
But, at any rate, you can get the book pretty easily. I'm selling it for half price on my book website right now for $7.95 and that includes shipping and handling. You can get it by going to www.salereadycompany.com. That's www.salereadycompany.com. Buy the book, get seven or eight bonuses or ebooks, and infographics, and worksheets on how to implement all the stuff that we talk about inside the book itself.
So, this is Josh Patrick. We're with Hannah Moore. You're at Cracking the Cash Flow Code. Thanks a lot for stopping by. I hope to see you back here really soon.
Narrator: You've been listening to Cracking the Cash Flow Code where we ask the question, “What would it take for your business to still be around a hundred years from now?”
If you've liked what you've heard and want more information, please contact Josh Patrick at 802-846-1264 extension 102, or visit us on our website at www.sustainablebusiness.co, or you can send Josh an email at email@example.com.
Thanks for listening and we hope to see you at Cracking the Cash Flow Code in the near future.