Submitted by COLLIN MASCAGNI, MASCAGNI WEALTH MANAGEMENT
I remember sitting in a stadium-sized classroom at The University of Alabama in the summer of 2003 and hearing my professor say that we did not need a financial planner. In fact, we could simplify life by investing in index funds and putting our investment account on cruise. I remember being perplexed and disappointed. Until that point in my young life, a financial planner had helped me with the few important financial decisions I had made. My studies had benefited from those decisions. My dad was that financial planner, and I looked up to him as a result.
Fast forward to today: I am no longer confused by the statement my professor made in 2003. Daily experiences at Mascagni Wealth Management renew my confidence in what my dad did for me and remind me that this business is both a calling and a privilege. What I have is a “get-to” job, as TNT’s Ernie Johnson said about his broadcaster job when he gave a recent speech to an Alabama football team.
I see retirees come into the office with a smile on their face because their plan worked. I see the widow or widower walk into our office looking for guidance after losing everything. I see the relief on a client’s face when they know they have help with the financial planning issue that has been bothering them. I see the client who realizes an exit on their small business and has a plan going forward with their proceeds. I see the relief on a client’s face after we write a financial plan, and the clarity from knowing when they can retire.
There is a thank-you card that sits on my desk from a special client that serves as a reminder of what I do. The card simply says, “Gratitude is a smile in the heart — hope 2018 is a good year for all of us!” This client was a retired, successful business owner whom God blessed us with. She wanted us to help her manage her wealth and also help her daughter manage that wealth long after she was gone. Yesterday I met with her daughter for the first time since her passing, and two things suddenly hit me:
• We don’t have long at all — plan yesterday for today.
• Ms. Patricia was special, and she is still trusting us to complete the work she started.
Any small memory we had with Ms. Patricia was a blessing and valuable in helping her daughter during this difficult time. That is simply an honor.
An autopilot index fund never provides that kind of relationship. Numbers have faces. My life would be vastly different if I didn’t experience the relationships God blesses me with each day — including with my financial planner, my dad.
Inevitably, life gets in the way of financial planning and hiring help for our investment decisions. Whether it’s applying for life or disability insurance, enrolling or increasing a percentage in a company 401(K), or investing excess funds to increase retirement probabilities, we may think we will do it tomorrow. We might. We might not. However, all of us have somebody who could benefit from being proactive.
The picture above of a perfect sunset in California also sits in my office. Orange skies like these can stop us and cause us to contemplate life. That perfectly painted orange sky can remind us how perfect God is. Wherever you are in life, know God has a plan for you. Philippians 1:6 promises us, “He who started a good work in you will carry it to completion.” Plan yesterday for today.
Collin Mascagni is a CPA and financial advisor at Mascagni Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Adviser, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. He and his wife, Mallory, and their children, Myers and Harrison, live in Flora and attend Fondren Church.