In June, my wife, Dana, and I celebrated our 24th wedding anniversary. We were fortunate to spend some time together and reflect on all the great relationships and experiences that have been really important to us over the course of time. One of the important components of that conversation was the gratitude for the career change I made 14 years ago.
Before I joined Ashford to pursue a career, Dana and I were first clients of Ashford Advisors. Right after we got married, I got a phone call from my friend Matt Lipscomb who said, “Hey, I think I can help you and Dana.” I agreed that we could probably use some help, so we met with Matt and soon became clients of Ashford Advisors back in 1995.
From 1995-2005, as we changed jobs, rolled over 401ks, built houses, had children, bought life insurance, saved money, and wanted to ask crazy questions about things we heard on the radio, Matt was an unbelievable resource for us. He was always so patient and would help us think through the pros and cons of our choices. He didn’t necessarily tell us what to do, he just provided details on things we weren’t thinking about, and it made for a great relationship.
Then, in 2005, I decided to make a career change and I was pretty far down the road in the interview process with a company when I got frustrated. I got frustrated with the pace of the interviews; I got frustrated with not knowing whether or not I was ever going to get the position. So, I ran my frustration by Matt. He said, “Look, I really think you should stick this out. I think you’d be good in this position and that it would be a great thing for you.”
Ironically, two weeks later, he called me back and said, “You know, you need to do what I do.” I told him that I didn’t know how to do what he did. I could spell financial planning, but that was about it. Matt pressed me and said, “I think you know more than you probably think you do. Why don’t we get together and talk?”
That was the summer of 2005, and when I made the decision to join Ashford Advisors, I really didn’t have any idea how that decision would impact my life in the way that it has. It’s the best career move I have ever made. I wanted to be in a career where I was able to live out my mission and do what I felt like I was born to do, which is to serve and help other people.
When I started in January of 2006, that’s what I set out to do. Here I am 13 years later. I feel so lucky and blessed. Not only do I get to work with great families and clients, but I also get to help train, coach, and mentor all of our new associates here at the firm. It’s been a great ride with many more years to come, but I am so thankful that Matt asked me to consider a career change into this industry. Turns out, it is the perfect career for me.