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November 12, 2013

So what do you do?

by The 401k Study Group ®

TireRepairA Guest Post by James Holland from MIRA

The questions no one really wants to ask, and fewer people want to answer.  The questioner is only trying to be polite and the one answering the questions hates it because the response will most times be underwhelming.

The standard responses:  “I am Financial Planner”, “I am Wealth Manager”, “I’m an Investment Advisor/Counselor”… do you even get to finish that before they start to walk away? Or do they have their own person?

Try this one, “I am a Retirement Plan Repair person”.

Stranger:               “Excuse me?”

Advisor:                 “Yes, I fix broken retirement plans.”

Stranger:              “Ok I’ll bite is there a big market for that?”

Advisor:               “You would be amazed at how many plans need attention”

Stranger:             “Really, how do you know if one is broken?

Advisor:               “The Retirement plan space is very complicated it can take between 100/200 hours per year to run a plan properly so like many complicated things it can get ignored. If it is not inspected it gets neglected.

Stranger:             “So you are a Mr./Ms. Fix it?”

Advisor:               “No.  You call a Mr./Ms. Fix it when you need a shelf repaired or some Honey-Do item completed. I am specialist, uniquely qualified to handle Retirement Plans.”

Stranger:             What makes you uniquely qualified?

Advisor:               “ERISA, the law that Retirement plans falls under requires anyone who works on them to have the proper credentials & expertise, for example my team has over XX yrs of ERISA experience.”

Stranger:             “Your Team?”

Advisor:               “Yes you did not think I did this alone did you? Sorry should have mentioned that earlier as the RPF (Responsible Plan Fiduciary ( the FANCY term they are using nowadays for the Business Owner or the people on the committee who handle the plan) you  have the responsibility of helping to ensure your employee have the best chance of reaching their retirement goals, you would not want to leave that up to just one person would you?

Stranger:             “A whole team that must be expensive?”

Advisor:               “Great question and a common misconception but in fact it is just the opposite. Since my team assumes a great deal of the Fiduciary Liability in writing for the plan on your behalf we have to ensure we bring MORE value than we cost.”

Stranger:             “Can you actually prove this?”

Advisor:                               “Absolutely all I need is 30 mins with the people who make the decisions for your plan. Thanks for indulging me let’s grab that drink/coffee and you can tell me about what YOU do.”

Image courtesy of supakitmod at

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