Twice the Power When Financial Planning & Wealth Management Combine Forces
From left: Mark Motley, Investment Manager & Shareholder; Zach Horn, Investment Manager & Shareholder; Dave Foster, Financial Planner & Shareholder; Paul Staubach, Financial Planner & Shareholder; Beth Green, Investment Manager & Shareholder; and David Nienaber, Financial Planner & Shareholder.
Photography by Catie Viox
Today, Foster & Motley’s signature “Power of &” is reflected daily in the independent employee-owned firm’s successful approach to helping ensure clients in Cincinnati, the tri-state area and around the country meet their financial goals. Key drivers in the firm’s steadfast ability to help each client stay his or her financial course and live a thriving life are Foster & Motley’s unique 20-to-1 client-to-employee ratio and its broad, 12-shareholder-strong ownership. That breadth of ownership goes a long way in assuring that future generations of clients will benefit from Foster & Motley’s trusted, long-term advisor-client relationships.
Sophisticated, innovative investment management combined with concise, comprehensive financial planning is, in a nutshell, what Foster & Motley has been and will always be about, according to David Nienaber, MBA, CPA, CFP®, and Zachary T. Horn, MBA, CFP®, CMFC®, two of the firm’s second-generation owners.
“It’s who we are; it’s how we define ourselves,” says Nienaber.
The firm’s clientele represents a wide array of financial scenarios, from business owners needing financial planning to organize personal finances, protect their wealth or plan for an eventual transfer of wealth to heirs, for example, to families dealing with the personal financial aspects of divorce, retirement or death of a spouse.
“Our 20-to-1 client to employee ratio is twice as good as the average, so we are delivering more in services to our clients. And, while we’ve had shareholders retire, we’ve never had one leave, so [our professional succession plan] provides consistency for our clients throughout their experience with us,” Nienaber continues.
“We are a fiduciary by law, but our culture has always been the client comes first,” Horn adds. “We’ve always been on the same side of table with our clients.”
But Back To The ‘Power Of &’
“Our clients are getting a dedicated investment manager and a dedicated financial planner – there are always two professionals in the room working together,” says Nienaber, who leads Foster & Motley’s financial planning team. “The industry norm is one person in the room trying to be both things, but we make the investment to give the client twice as much. We just don’t believe one person can be a detailed investment manager and a detailed financial planner at the same time. So, we like to say we do real financial planning and real investment management because we have twice the power behind them.”
Because it’s an independent, fee-only financial planning and investment management firm, Foster & Motley clients can rest easy, knowing that their advisors’ allegiance is with them, not a parent company, bank or other investment firm. The financial advice they receive is free from the conflict of interest inherent with recommendations for products other advisors are paid to sell. Their structure also gives Foster & Motley advisors the flexibility to develop customized solutions for their clients without the limitations and bureaucracy that often pair with big corporate ownership.
According to Horn, Foster & Motley has been described as being in a unique position, because the firm has been successful in providing clients with a smooth transition between first and second-generation advisors.
“Our clients know that our succession plan is in place, and they know who they will be dealing with. They know the business won’t be pulled out from underneath them when their current advisor retires,” Horn points out.
Human Expertise is Still Key
Nienaber and Horn are keenly cognizant that today’s technology allows more efficiencies in the financial planning and investment management processes. However, they are both adamant that nothing takes the place of human communication and interaction when helping clients plan their financial future and manage their investments. And navigating and fortifying clients’ financial hopes and dreams not only takes compassion and conviction, but the creative, entrepreneurial spirit that is Foster & Motley’s foundation.
“You can’t replace human expertise with a robot,” says Horn, who leads Foster & Motley’s investment management team. “We welcome technological advancements and use them to benefit our clients. But we tend to focus on the more important things, like getting to know our clients inside and out, what makes them tick, so we can figure out how to best provide our services to our clients. You can’t do that without trying to understand them.”
“Sometimes, because technology gives so much information, it tends to paralyze people,” Nienaber adds. “Our clients can have peace of mind, because they know we’re keeping them focused and they can ignore all the noise that is out there.”
Foster & Motley is located at 7755 Montgomery Road, Suite 100, Cincinnati, OH 45236. For more information, call 513.561.6640, 800.532.2962 or visit www.fosterandmotley.com.