When it comes to financial planning and managing your wealth, you’ll no doubt start with a goal in mind — a destination you’re aiming for, whether it’s a few years or a few decades away. Your financial journey will include milestones along the way, but there will be unexpected challenges too. Having a solid road map to your destination — and sticking to it — is the best way to achieve real financial peace of mind in the long run.

Here are five things to consider when working with a financial advisor:

  1. Start with a real conversation.

Begin your financial planning journey with a face-to-face talk about your needs and objectives. Does your advisor have a personalized approach to this critical first step in your financial journey?

“We always start with a discovery meeting — just advisor and client — and we believe it’s the best way to really understand who they are and where they ultimately want to be,” says Dennis Covington, CFP®, Chief Executive Officer at Capital Directions. “We use a proprietary process to help identify our clients’ values and goals, then use what we learn as the foundation for their personalized plan.”

  1. Stay focused on the big picture.

Once you’ve established your goals, it’s important to keep the long view in mind as you work with your advisor to build specific investment and wealth management strategies.

“This phase includes a recommendations meeting, where we present clients with a Total Wealth Profile as well as a second opinion on their current strategy,” says Covington. “Once we have the whole picture in focus, we offer our recommendations for the best path forward.”

  1. Put a plan into action that you can feel confident about.

When it’s time to make final decisions and put ideas into action, your advisor can help answer any questions, review details and take care of the paperwork. Whether it’s making a few last-minute tweaks or simply reaffirming your goals, you’ll have confidence knowing your plan was carefully and thoughtfully put together just for you.

“At this point we are ready to start implementing our recommendations,” says Richard O’Donnell, CFP®, Director of Financial Planning at Capital Directions. “We stay with them every step of the way and that process builds a lot of trust with new clients.”

  1. Don’t just set it and forget it.

Beginning a long-term financial journey isn’t about setting a switch and walking away. Part of having true peace of mind is knowing that your advisor is always there to help, so regular communication is an important part of the process in the weeks, months and years ahead.

“Once we implement a client’s plan, we like to have a check-in after about 45 days,” says O’Donnell. “It’s a great opportunity to check everyone’s pulse and see how we’re feeling about our direction together. We like to clean up loose ends, review the client portal and discuss the next areas we should focus on.”

  1. Stay connected and communicate regularly.

We will schedule a periodic review to go over your portfolio, update your goals and address any needs that may have come up since your last meeting.

“We want our clients to know that we’re always here — we don’t just hand them the keys and say good luck,” says Covington. “Our periodic review meetings give us a chance to check on our clients’ progress and make sure we’re all still on the same page about goals and objectives. It’s a good time to engage other advisors on our team if they can bring a particular skill set or specialization to the table. We also recognize that there will be seasons in our relationship where we will meet more frequently to address a specific goal like wealth protection, wealth transfer or charitable giving.”

At Capital Directions, our advisors understand that achieving your financial goals starts with a personalized plan that fits you. Our approach to wealth management is all about the big picture — planning, objectives, trust and relationships.

See how our proven wealth management formula can help you set a successful financial course for the future.