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.

Getting from Here to There

We all have goals for the future. Some people reach those goals, but unfortunately, many others don’t. What’s the difference between those who get “there” and those who don’t? For some, it might be luck. But for most successful people, the difference is having a strategy.

At GCW Capital Group, we provide a holistic approach to your financial plans—from investments to insurance and beyond. Putting the pieces of these plans together is what we do best. We can help you save, grow and protect your most valuable assets thanks to our cutting-edge wealth tracking technology and one-on-one, personalized attention to your needs.

Watch this video to learn why the road from here to there is shorter for those who know the way.

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.

Survey: A Majority of Americans Don’t Have an Updated Will

A recent Google Consumer survey led by USLegalWills.com shows that a majority of Americans—72 percent—don’t have an up-to-date will. People over 65 years old are the most likely age group to not have an updated will, and of the 65 percent of seniors who reported having a will, almost one in four said it was out-of-date. Read more about the survey results here.

What does this mean to you? If you don’t have a will, or haven’t updated your will recently, contact your financial adviser as soon as possible to make sure you have a document on file that reflects your current needs and wishes. If you’ve had any major life changes since your will was drafted (e.g. the birth of children, changes in marital status) then it is especially important to review your will and make revisions as necessary.

Also, consider talking to your parents or other older relatives about the status of their will. While the conversation may be difficult at first, it can help you avoid the stressful ramifications of dealing with your loved one’s out-of-date will after their death, and it may help ensure that you’ll be able to carry out his or her wishes.

If you have questions regarding your estate planning documents, please call GCW Capital Group today so we can help get your financial planning started.

GCW Capital Group, LLC is not a law firm and you should consult your legal counsel for specific advice.

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.

Waring Financial Group Rebrands as GCW Capital Group

Hamburg, NY – Waring Financial Group, a financial services firm that has served clients in Western New York and beyond for more than 30 years, has announced the completion of a long-term brand evolution with the creation of GCW Capital Group, a full-service financial services collective.

GCW Capital Group includes GCW Risk & Benefits Solutions, offering strategic risk management and asset protection strategies for businesses and individuals; and GCW Capital, LLC, an independent registered investment advisement firm that was established in 2014.

GCW Capital Group will operate with the same team, led by Tom Waring, Jr., principal and founder, and Shawn Glogowski, CFP, president and chief compliance officer. The brand transition began in 2014 with the creation of GCW Capital, LLC, as part of an ongoing effort to streamline service offerings and continue providing holistic financial planning for clients.

“At GCW Capital Group, we strive to be a source of financial clarity and objectivity, and to make things as simple as possible for our clients as we help them plan for their futures. This transition shows that we follow our own advice,” said Waring. “Our work has always been about providing thoughtful, strategic counsel and related financial services. I am happy to have the talented team working beside me that ensures we will be here for clients for years to come.”

Glogowski explained the firm’s view of financial security representing more than just dollars and cents.

“Our goal is to help clients grow their core wealth—something we see as a combination of financial, human, intellectual and social capital,” said Glogowski. “GCW represents the phrase ‘Grow Core Wealth,’ an idea we all agree reflects our current and continued value to our clients.”

Waring Financial Group was founded in 1982. Since then, the team has provided personalized financial counsel to thousands of businesses, executives and individuals.

GCW Capital Group helps clients navigate the complex landscape of financial planning with unbiased advice and guidance. The group’s mission is to be a source of financial clarity, confidence, leadership, support, achievement and significance. Learn more about the services provided by GCW Capital Group by visiting GCWCapitalGroup.com.

Why Executives and Business Leaders Need a Financial Adviser

As a business leader, the decisions you make have an impact on not just you, but also your staff, colleagues and the business as a whole. Why go it alone? At GCW Capital Group, we have decades of experience in providing guidance and support to business owners and executives.

We can help you make sense of the current financial picture of your business, and develop strategies that can ensure a healthy future as well. Watch this short video to learn more about why your financial adviser can play a key role in your professional success.