GCW Principal Awards Annual Scholarship to Fredonia Senior

State University of New York at Fredonia (Fredonia) senior, Jennifer Hendel, was recently named the recipient of the school’s Waring Work Ethic Scholarship. The annual award is given to a Fredonia student who achieves academically while working for a minimum of 15-hours a week. In making the presentation, GCW Capital Group Principal and scholarship co-founder, Thomas Waring, detailed the evolution of the scholarship.

“I attended Fredonia and worked full-time while earning my education,” Waring stated. “That blended experience provided me a great work ethic as well as a strong respect for any college student balancing the challenges of school and job. That’s why in 2011 my wife Sarah and I decided to establish the Waring Work Ethic Scholarship, to honor both my alma mater and Fredonia students working double time to achieve.”

Hendel, a native of Holley, New York, grew up attending Holley Elementary and High Schools while working on her family’s farm after school and on weekends. At Fredonia, the 21-year old majors in Communication Disorders and Sciences, maintaining a 3.74 GPA, while working part time at the campus dining hall. Hendel acknowledges her early life experience as a training ground for her success.

“Hard work got me to this point,” Hendel said. “And while it is definitely stressful to work when you’re going to school, it’s rewarding to know that I can be self-sufficient and not have to rely on my dad for everything.”

A side note to Hendel's story is that her success has inspired her father to set up his own student scholarship fund at Fredonia. In acknowledging the bequeath, Hendel spoke of the dual impact of such an award.

“My dad loves Fredonia. He believes I couldn’t have chosen a better school and he wanted to give back in some way. He also knows firsthand the difference a scholarship like this can make. It not only helps to fund education, it helps the winners feel good about themselves and that means the world to any student. That’s why my I am very thankful to Tom and Sarah for the scholarship. It’s a tremendous financial help and also makes me feel proud that I was chosen to receive it.”

According to Waring, the outcome of this year’s scholarship presentation fully achieves their intended purpose of not only awarding students, but recognizing the families for raising their children to become contributing members of society.

“This is the sixth Waring Scholarship Sarah and I have presented and, to be honest, it’s emotionally moving to see what a difference it makes, not only for the recipients, but for their families as well. Clearly the Hendel Family ingrained a strong work and education ethic in their daughter and this scholarship acknowledges their efforts as well as her achievements. To know that Jennifer’s success has encouraged her father to set up a new scholarship at Fredonia is doubly rewarding.”

ABOUT THE WARING WORK ETHIC SCHOLARSHIP (WWES): The Waring Work Ethic Scholarship is a general college need scholarship awarded yearly at the State University of New York at Fredonia (Fredonia). It was established in 2011 by Fredonia alumni, Tom Waring (’80), and his wife, Sarah. Students who receive the WWES award must be contributing a significant portion of their tuition at Fredonia by working a minimum of 15-hours a week during the academic year and what would be considered full-time during the summer. Characteristics such as commitment, dependability, reliability and other attributes that distinguish the applicant’s strong work ethic and ability to balance work and educational responsibilities are important considerations. **For more information on the Waring and other FSU scholarships,click on this link: http://fredonia.smartcatalogiq.com/en/2013-2014/Catalog/Admissions-and-Financial-Aid/Scholarship-Opportunities

GCW Senior Financial Advisor Earns National Accreditation

GCW Senior Financial Advisor Earns National Accreditation

We are proud to announce that GCW Senior Financial Advisor, Peter Campo, has earned the Accredited Investment Fiduciary® (AIF®) Designation from the Center for Fiduciary Studies®, the standards-setting body for Fi360.

Fi360 is a fiduciary education, training and technology company whose AIF designation signifies specialized knowledge of fiduciary responsibility and the ability to implement policies and procedures according to a defined standard of expertise.

Achieving the AIF Designation requires completion of a rigorous training program and a comprehensive, closed-book final examination under the supervision of a proctor.

Additionally, all accredited must agree to abide by the Center’s Code of Ethics and Conduct Standards and continue the education and adherence to the Code of Ethics and Conduct Standards required to maintain the AIF designation.

The AIF training provides a comprehensive understanding of fiduciary governance practices around employer-sponsored retirement plans, trusts, endowments, and foundations and we are pleased that Peter has achieved this high level of financial proficiency and proud that he can now share that knowledge base with our clients.

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GCW Capital Helps Raise Funds for WNY Veteran's Groups

GCW Capital Helps Raise Funds for WNY Veteran's Groups

On September 11, 2017, GCW Capital Principles,Tom Waring and Shawn Glogowski, partnered with Horizon Performance Solutions CEO, Steve Wischmann, in organizing a Tee It Up For The Troops/Wanakah Golf Tournament. The purpose of the event was to raise funds to benefit military veterans and their families. The tournament, held at Wanakah Country Club, was a sell-out, raising over $60,000.

Recently Tom and Steve presented checks to Western New York (WNY) and National Veteran’s Groups from monies raised at their inaugural tournament. In making the presentations, Tom acknowledged those across WNY who played a part in the successful fundraiser.

“In our first year, Tee it Up for the Troops/Wanakah was able to raise over $60,000, in great part due to the local organizations, businesses and individuals who stepped up in support. From the generous sponsorships and donations to sold-out participation in the tournament, we were able to present three WNY Veteran’s Groups with individual checks of $10,530 and donate $30,000 to the national veteran’s organizations Fisher House Foundation, Disabled Sports USA and Hope for the Warriors. We’re also pleased to announce that sponsors and teams for our 2018 event are already signed up for 2018, with a sellout field again expected. It just proves the deep devotion of the WNY Community to our veterans and their families.”

WNY Organizations receiving checks included Buffalo Healthcare for Homeless Veterans (HCHV), an office of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, providing emergency, transitional and permanent housing options to homeless veterans and their families throughout the eight counties of WNY, Veterans One-stop Center of WNY, Inc., bringing people, organizations, and resources together to effectively improve the well-being of all Western New York Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces and their immediate families and WNY Section PGA Foundation, created with a goal of providing support to various organizations, including veterans, in the Buffalo, Rochester, Erie and Southern Tier through the game of golf.

Tee It Up for the Troops/Wanakah received support from WNY businesses, organizations and individuals including Southgate Plaza, GCW Capital Group, Wanakah Country Club, Horizon Performance Solutions, Western New York Urology Associates, Cancer Care of Western New York, PCS Plumbing and Heating, Keller Chevrolet, National Property Management Associates, Key Bank, Evans Bank, Chiampou Travis BE saw and Kershner LLP, Maxwell Murphy Attorneys at Law, Colliers International, Rupp Baase Pfalzgraf Cunningham LLC Attorneys, Raysons, Attea and Attea PC Attorneys, West Herr New York , PCI, Pooley, Inc. and Business First.

For more information about Tee It Up for the Troops and the Wanakah Event go to [https://www.teeitupforthetroops.org/wanakah/event-details/]

(Featured in photo are (L to R) GCW Principle, Tom Waring, VA Western New York Healthcare Representative, Kristen Weese and Horizon Performance Solutions CEO, Steve Wischmann

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Seminar 11/29/2017 - NY State Paid Family Leave Law

Who & What?

Barrett Wadsworth & Elisha Tomasello from Northwood's Capital Benefits will provide a clear and concise summary of the new NY State law that impacts all employers starting 1/1/2018. This new law will allow employees to take extended paid leave to care for their family members.

2018 is bringing with it the most significant HR, employee benefits, & compliance changes and challenges since the initial launch of the ACA in 2014.

Small employers are facing their first ever mandatory job protected paid leave law, requiring them to put in place new policies and procedures never before required for small employers. On top of that, the largest small group health insurance rate increase since 2014 has disrupted markets and premium/subsidy spreads to the extent that there is a new cost/benefit analysis that small employers must look at well before their health plan renewal dates.

Large employers are facing new and broader leave requirements that must be integrated with existing policies to avoid “double dipping”. In addition, the combination of rate increases, possibility of new healthcare association plans, and ongoing evolutions in administrative options and plan designs requires large employers to analyze the cost-efficiency of their plan design in the face of rapidly changing self-insurance options.

Whatever your company size and regardless of how well you have attempted to adopt up-to-date HR and employee benefits policies, the regulations and markets are changing so rapidly that you cannot afford to be reactive in these areas. Despite these challenges, real strategies and opportunities exist for even seemingly small changes that can have surprising savings and avoid compliance challenges and employee relation concerns.

Elisha and Barrett have significant expertise in bringing smarter, creative solutions to these new challenges. Please join us for a breakfast presentation and discussion on what you must know in HR and employee benefits for 2018.

Where?

Salvatore's Italian Gardens 6461 Transit Road, Depew, NY 14043

When?

November 29, 2017

7:30AM Registration & Breakfast

8AM - 9AM Presentation with Question & Answers

RSVP

You can call Lisa Lowry at (716) 256-1682 or send an email with your name, company, and number of required seats to info@gcwcapital.com.

Financial Planning Tips for Start-Up Success

Financial Planning Tips for Start-Up Success

You’re about to start a company, and you can’t yet afford to hire a full-time accountant. At the same time, proper financial planning is vital for success. And if you make too many mistakes, then your business won’t last very long. Here are some common-sense steps you can take to protect your bottom line today and into the future.

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“Trapped in the Family Business” Author To Visit Buffalo May 9

“Trapped in the Family Business” Author To Visit Buffalo May 9

GCW Capital Group, along with Family Business Directions, CORE Strategic Business Solutions and BNY Mellon are proud to present author Michael Klein, PsyD, in a unique Western New York appearance on Tuesday, May 9 at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens. Dr. Klein is the author of Trapped in the Family Business: A Practical Guide to Uncovering and Managing this Hidden Dilemma. He specializes in providing services for those working in, or entering into a family business. His two presentatations will share insights from his research and work.

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The Biggest Financial Risk Never Talked About

The Biggest Financial Risk Never Talked About

There’s a major financial risk lurking around the corner for far too many baby boomers with children and grandchildren. And it’s hardly ever thought about, or talked about. If your son or daughter in his or her 20s, 30s or 40s were to die today, is his or her young family covered by life insurance, or aren’t they? If the answer is no, it’s time to have the second most important talk you’ll ever have in your parent-child relationship.
 

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Ensuring the Financial Health of Your Business

Ensuring the Financial Health of Your Business

Are you in need of a “personal financial trainer” for your business, while your other trainer takes care of your body? The new year is full of opportunity. If you own a business or lead one, right now is a crucial time for assessing and strengthening your company’s own financial and risk management planning goals. Flex your business fitness muscles and use the start of 2017 efficiently. Call us today for a sweat-free "workout" with even better results. 

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Global Competition Spotlights Family Business Enterprise

Global Competition Spotlights Family Business Enterprise

The study, science and art of helping family businesses succeed, transition and successfully face challenges is a unique type of work. I had the honor and pleasure of being an invited judge last week at the annual Global Family Enterprise Case Competition (FECC) held at the University of Vermont’s Grossman School of Business in Burlington, Vermont.

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2017: The Year of Financial Fitness

As 2017 begins, we’re reminded of the multiple things we set out each year to accomplish. For many, it means getting back into the gym and cutting a few pounds loose. However, the start of the new year shouldn’t just be spent on pumping up or slimming down.

We at GCW propose also using the new year as a chance to get your financial planning muscles in shape. The first quarter of the year offers a natural chance to review and/or reassess your goals and progress. Consider it a “weigh-in” and training update with your “personal” fiduciary

A recent poll by Marist University cites “spending less and saving more money” as one of the top resolutions for 2017. A new year can bring any number of major life changes, and now is the time to address them. Your financial planner can help clear the clouds of uncertainty, and help you achieve your resolutions and financial goals.

What to Keep in Mind?

Most people tend to get derailed from their resolutions. Only 10% follow through. Thirty-two percent of those who made a resolution don’t even partially complete their resolution.

At GCW, we advise setting a business goal-—not a resolution. Studies show that we are three times more likely to follow through on business goals than resolutions. So setting a measurable and realistic goal, and holding yourself accountable is one great step to ensure your goal will be accomplished.

Going even further, we are nine times more likely to follow through on business “decisions.” If your goal is to improve your retirement plan by the end of the year, make it a decision to do so. As your financial planners, we’ll do our very best to help you succeed.

Have a resolution, goal or decision to make? We at GCW look forward to dedicating our time, knowledge, and resources to help you achieve the best possible outcomes this year, no matter what your goals might be.

GCW Capital, LLC is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC and only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or exempt from registration. Primary office located at 38 Lake Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Before making any investment decisions, please contact our office at (716) 256-1682 or info@gcwcapital.com to obtain a copy of our firm ADV Part 2A for more information and fee schedules.

Common Myths About Financial Planners: Financial Planners Aren’t Worth the Expense

Through the many rises and falls of the economy in recent years, a great number of people cut back on costs deemed ‘unnecessary’. Oftentimes, we cut out the expenses of things we believe we can handle ourselves, including financial planning. In this week’s blog post we’ll tackle the myth that financial planners aren’t worth the expense.

Where does this myth stem from?

Like many myths, there is little to no factual evidence to back up the claim. This line of thinking stems from two roots: the fact that some people like trying to do everything themselves, thinking that only they know how to handle their finances; and the occasional need we all have for short term cost cutting. While there are exceptions to any rule, in financial planning it is rare. Here’s why.

Realities versus myths

While we may need to cut costs for ourselves and our businesses, nine times out of ten, it ends up costing more in the end. And doing it all yourself? If you are a skilled financial planner, educated and trained in the field, maybe. But the rest of us are wise to ask for help from a professional.

It could be said that no matter how much you plan to invest or manage, the real investment is not the cash or assets. It’s the initial time spent finding the right-fit financial planner. If you pick right, the rest is easy. And likely way more profitable than going it alone, or cutting back.

Finding a planner should be seen then as your first step at successful capital management on the path to reaching your goals.

A certified financial planner has not only a very in-depth education in financial planning, but resources and tools at their disposal to help you, including the resource of time. His or her job is to spend as much time as needed researching your best options. Your planner knows where to look for such information, much more than do-it-yourself online resources. He or she also is paid to be unbiased. So you are more likely to get clear, strategic and non-emotionally-based recommendations than if you were advising yourself.

What about cutting back? Truth is, you will usually save much more money and time paying a professional than possibly making mistakes with your money and losing some in the process. Consider the amount of errors you will be willing to accept and if you can withstand taking a hit financially.

Free resources can be used to decrease your risk. But we recommend using them more to increase your financial education and knowledge base—putting you in the position of the educated consumer when choosing and working with a financial planner.

Seeking to learn more? Contact us at GCW Capital Group today to explore options, and the right fit for you or your business. We look forward to dedicating our time, knowledge, and resources to help you achieve the best possible outcomes for you, no matter what your goals might be.

GCW Capital, LLC is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC and only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or exempt from registration. Primary office located at 38 Lake Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Before making any investment decisions, please contact our office at (716) 256-1682 or info@gcwcapital.com to obtain a copy of our firm ADV Part 2A for more information and fee schedules.

Common Myths About Financial Planners: Financial Planners Only Do “Big Plans”

This blog is the latest edition in our series about financial planner myths. Today let’s talk about the misconception that planners only do “big plans.” Financial planners, including our staff at GCW Capital Group, frequently do assist consumers with single major issues, such as saving for college, developing a budget, rolling over a retirement account or helping a client through the financial aftermath of a spouse’s death. However, these examples are still just pieces of the overall financial picture and financial plan of a client. Good planners provide their focused advice in the context of a person’s overall financial goals, needs and situation. A planner ensures that any recommended actions will not undermine other aspects of a client’s financial life and future. To help each client succeed, a good financial planner will focus on a spectrum of needs, such as: • Financial statement preparation and analysis (including cash flow analysis/planning and budgeting) • Insurance planning and risk management • Employee benefits planning if applicable • Investment planning • Tax planning • Retirement planning • Estate planning The road of life is complex and full of obstacles. You should be able to see your financial planner as a trusted navigator—someone to help you avoid or overcome dips and dodges and get you to your destination. In our next post, we’ll explore the myth of “only the wealthy need financial planners.” Stay tuned!

GCW Capital, LLC is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC and only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or exempt from registration. Primary office located at 38 Lake Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Before making any investment decisions, please contact our office at (716) 256-1682 or info@gcwcapital.com to obtain a copy of our firm ADV Part 2A for more information and fee schedules.

Investment Advisors and Financial Planners: What’s the Difference?

Financial planners are a misunderstood player in the finance industry. Many believe a financial planner is just someone who manages and invests others’ funds. But while many financial planners do assist with investment criteria and decisions, there’s much more to the story.

Where does the myth come from? Probably the single most influential factor in the simplification of the industry is the media’s treatment of the profession. The “trust factor” with financial planners is often called into question. Stereotypical portrayals occur in film and on TV. Negative news events such as the 2008 recession and the Storm Financial scandal played a large role in fanning these flames. High-profile ad campaigns by large firms cloud it more by asserting that success is determined by just one factor: high return rates. While savvy investing is one service a planner performs, returns are only one benchmark of success. Others vary based entirely on an individual client’s goals and needs, and how those needs may change or flex over time in the life of an individual or business. The multiple roles a qualified and experienced financial planner plays, and the ethics practiced, thus go well beyond common public perceptions.

A broader measure of success A truly helpful financial planner knows that in order for a client to achieve success in the big picture, all the elements of planning and finance need to work together. This includes net worth, investment risk tolerance, debt management, retirement planning, estates, cash flow and much more. Good financial planners are in it with you for the long haul. They focus on your needs and interests over their own. And they are also interested in discussing and helping you plan the growth of your non-cash wealth (e.g. human, intellectual and social capital).

A genuine financial planner or CERTIFIED FINANICAL PLANNERTM PRACTITIONER can help you address a variety of financial needs, not just investments, just insurance or just taxes. They will use a holistic approach to meet your life goals through the proper management of your resources. Often a heavy emphasis is placed on financial statement preparation and analysis, insurance planning and risk management, employee benefits planning, investment planning, tax planning, retirement planning, estate planning.

At GCW Capital Group, we also strive to protect your greatest asset of all… time. Because when all is said and done, the largest accumulation of wealth in the entire world can’t buy that today, tomorrow or any day in between.

GCW Capital, LLC is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC and only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or exempt from registration. Primary office located at 38 Lake Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Before making any investment decisions, please contact our office at (716) 256-1682 or info@gcwcapital.com to obtain a copy of our firm ADV Part 2A for more information and fee schedules.

Common Myths About Financial Planners

Many Americans have varying, often inaccurate, views on what a financial planner can do for his or her clients. In this series of blog posts, we’ll explore the most common myths about financial planning. Before we dispel these myths, we’ll start the series by explaining what a financial planner does.

A true financial planner will hold themselves to a fiduciary standard—meaning they must always work with your best interest in front of their own. They’ll assess things like liabilities, assets, income, expenses, and risks to meet your needs and set a financial guide. They help crystalize your goals and set in motion a plan to help you achieve them, whether those goals are to buy a vacation home or create a retirement fund. Your planner should also show a commitment to higher education and hold reputable certifications such as the CFP®.

Above all, there is a unique relationship between a client and planner. The relationship should go way beyond a financial transaction of a product and be viewed as a long term relationship that will provide council for many years to come. Most financial planners will recommend regular meetings to go over performance, recommendations, and any big developments. Your financial planner should always be monitoring the market and looking out for your investments to help you achieve your short- and long-term goals.

In our next post, we’ll explore the myth that financial planners are primarily investment advisors.

GCW Capital, LLC is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC and only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or exempt from registration. Primary office located at 38 Lake Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Before making any investment decisions, please contact our office at (716) 256-1682 or info@gcwcapital.com to obtain a copy of our firm ADV Part 2A for more information and fee schedules.

GCW Team Shares Knowledge, Gains Insight at Two National Conferences

Our team at GCW Capital Group believes that education, growth and networking are key to our ability to continue providing our clients with the very best service. That’s why two of our leadership staff are attending national conferences this week, in order to share knowledge with our peers and learn new best practices in the field of financial advising.

Principal and Chief Compliance Officer Shawn Glogowski attended the Charles Schwab Impact 2016 Conference in San Diego. Thousands of registered independent advisers attend this conference each year for a week of learning about practice management, compliance, industry trends, new technology and much more. Shawn and his fellow attendees benefited from education sessions and keynote speakers that covered a broad range of topics, including how politics can have an impact on the global market, and how to make connections in the digital age.

Stay tuned for another post from Shawn soon with more in-depth details about the important and helpful information shared at the conference.

Meanwhile, Principal Tom Waring, Jr. attended the Bank Director’s 12th annual Bank Executive and Board Compensation Conference. Topics covered at the event included cyber security; executive compensation design, implementation and monitoring; succession planning; reputational risk Management; mergers and acquisition; and attracting, rewarding and retaining talent.

We’re excited to capitalize on the information and wisdom gained from these conferences and put that knowledge to work for our clients.

GCW Capital, LLC is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC and only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or exempt from registration. Primary office located at 38 Lake Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Before making any investment decisions, please contact our office at (716) 256-1682 or info@gcwcapital.com to obtain a copy of our firm ADV Part 2A for more information and fee schedules.