Tuesday, April 9, 2013

What do you do at work, Daddy?


When they were smaller, my children used to ask what I did at work. When you’re not a fireman or a police officer but an estate planner and financial advisor, it’s a bit challenging to describe what you do to a five-year-old. As they grew, though, they figured out what estate planners and financial advisors generally do.
But in 1998 we moved to Orlando and shortly thereafter I started SunBridge. That renewed their uncertainty. Today, even though they’re smart and mature, they still have a hard time following the evolutions of this company.
They’re not alone. Professional colleagues frequently ask: “What all do you do at SunBridge? You seem to have such a wide array of offerings that it’s hard to understand them all.”
So, anticipating my family’s questions as we gather this Thanksgiving at my daughter’s new home in Wilson, North Carolina, and hoping to craft an answer that will also satisfy those professional queries, I wrote out the following description.
To my dear and precious Elisabeth, Nathaniel, Sara, Kate, Evan, and Paul (and all of my wonderful professional colleagues)—here’s what I do at work:
Our mission at SunBridge is to touch hearts and change lives. We do this by providing practical, affordable, and innovative training, tools, and support to professional advisors and to select client families in our area. Here’s a summary of our programs.
Services for Professional Advisors:
The Legacy Builder Network is a community of caring professionals who tap into the power of family heritage and legacy stories to develop deep, meaningful relationships with their clients and design financial, estate, and philanthropic plans that are based on their clients' most significant vision, values, and purposes. See www.SunBridgeLegacy.com.
The KEY Advisor Network is an alliance of attorneys and financial advisors who provide middle-class and upper-middle-class families the training, tools, and support they need to navigate the financial and legal issues of these turbulent times and to de-clutter their financial and legal lives, put their houses in order, get their ducks in a row---and keep them there. See www.SunBridgeKeyAdvisors.com.
Double Your Sales Professional Training is a client engagement system based on a sequence of simple stories that helps honest and authentic professionals connect with people more quickly and effectively and allows them to turn more prospects into customers—customers who buy, who buy more, and who buy more often. See www.DoubleYourSalesNow.com.
Time to Think Teaching and Coaching is an approach to leadership and professional services based on the observation that the quality of everything we do depends on the quality of the thinking we do first, and the recognition that the environment we create will determine whether those around us can think for themselves with rigor, imagination, courage and grace. See www.TimetoThink.comand http://www.sunbridgenetwork.com/TTT.html.
Services for Client Families:
SunBridge KEY Advisor Planning is a common-sense, down-to-earth program for giving middle-class and upper-middle-class families in the Orlando area the training, tools, and support they need to navigate the financial and legal issues of these turbulent times, and to de-clutter their financial and legal lives, put their houses in order, get their ducks in a row---and keep them there. See www.SunBridgeKeyAdvisors.com.
Legacy Planning Associates is a comprehensive process for high-end Florida families in which hard-core legal, tax and estate planning is integrated with family vision, virtues, and values for a lasting legacy, assuring that a family’s heritage, faith and life’s purpose are the foundation on which to shape future generations of healthy, productive, and responsible children and grandchildren. See www.LegacyPlans.com.
The Money & Success Client Connection System is my process for engaging new clients. I use a Double Your Sales-based “Get Acquainted Conversation” to set up a deeply-connective Meaning of Money Priceless Conversation, which leads to customized estate or financial plan based on their money stories. Later, I use the Meaning of Success Priceless Conversation to begin a long-term advisory relationship by discovering what elements of success are still missing for them. See http://www.sunbridgenetwork.com/Money_and_SuccessHOME.html.
That’s it. Seven programs. All based on the power of connection, the power of story, and the power of thoughtful, integrated, people-centered processes.
In this effort, I am blessed with the greatest help on the planet. Sharon Greenway and Cyndi Campbell are the other members of the SunBridge team, and my partners at Legacy Planning Associates are Mike Cummins and Mary Tomlinson. Each one is brilliant, creative, hard-working, generous, and full of integrity. I’m thankful I get to work with them.
I’m also thankful for the blessing of being able to work with some of the most exceptional professional advisors and client families anywhere. Something attracts the best and the brightest and the most caring to our networks and programs—the kind of folks you’d pick to hang out with as friends if you could pick anybody. What I said about Sharon, Cyndi, Mike, and Mary— brilliant, creative, hard-working, generous, and full of integrity—is equally true about the advisors and client families we serve. Every minute spent with them is a treat.
As you can see, I have a lot to be thankful for. Life is good when you love the work you do and the people you do it with. As I’ve often said, if you want the perfect job, sometimes you just have to go out and build it yourself.
So now let’s get on with the turkey and dressing.

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