Putting the Human Touch Back into Financial Services

Putting the Human Touch Back into Financial Services

Putting the Human Touch Back into Financial Services

by Steve Gamel

 

As Glen Smith sits in his office on a rainy Thursday afternoon, he hesitates for just a few seconds and rubs one hand across his face. He wants to share a funny personal story, but he’s worried about how quickly it could backfire. “All the stories that I think of don’t paint me in the best light,” he says with a laugh. Yet he takes a deep breath and continues anyway. As the story goes, it’s 2003 and Glen is close to graduating from Sonoma State University in California. He interviews for a management position at Wells Fargo Bank and comes away feeling pretty good about it. He’s even satisfied with what he thought was a safe yet rock-solid answer to the question, “What is unique about you?” when he said confidently, “I’m a hard worker.” Surprisingly, he never got a callback.

“I eventually got a job at Lehman Brothers, but a year later, my wife, Gisella, interviewed for the same role in the same building at Wells Fargo and not only got the job but was offered more money,” he said. “I asked what her answer was to that question, and she says, ‘I just told them I’m flexible.’ I was like, ‘What? I totally should have said that instead!’” He added, “I told our kids that story, and they think it’s the funniest thing.” Glen, now the managing partner for Glen D. Smith & Associates and a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) professional for Raymond James in Flower Mound, admits he’s always been playing a game of catchup with his beautiful bride, who has an MBA, was the Valedictorian of her class at every level, and is a former Miss Guayaquil.

The lovebirds grew up in Ecuador and met when they were eight years old. They dated off and on starting at age 14, but even when their long-distance relationship got serious in college, Glen’s friends teased that they didn’t think she was real. “My roommate told me when he finally met Gisella, ‘I seriously thought you made her up,’” Glen said. “I married up.” Not only did Glen prove that he got the girl, but he also showed how flexible he was after all.

For more than 14 years, Glen has combined his passion for number crunching with helping people responsibly build wealth through long-term planning, methodical decision-making, and personalized service. He’s the go-to advocate for high net-worth clients who need guidance with everything from investment management and retirement planning to estate planning, trust services, and more. That commitment to the client and being able to adapt to any situation is a breath of fresh air in today’s environment, where it can be difficult to remember what personal service feels like. But Raymond James has long been a different kind of financial services firm. And Glen has proven to be the perfect fit.

“You have to be super nimble, flexible, and customize everything because everyone is so different,” Glen said. “We have 250 clients, and while there are some similarities here and there, not everyone is the same – especially when money is involved. It takes experience; you can know numbers, but it’s that human touch that’s needed when someone says, ‘Hey, Glen, I’m concerned.’ That makes all the difference.” He added, “When I’m getting to know my clients for the first time, I love asking questions like, ‘What does money mean to you?’ and “What was money like for you growing up?’ They may wonder what this has to do with managing their money, but in my mind, it helps me understand where they’re coming from. Some people are super conservative; others are not.”

Outside of the office, Glen and Gisella are just like anyone else – which is another reason why his clients gravitate toward him. The Smiths live in Flower Mound and are trying their best to raise two beautiful children, Nathalia, 12, and Lucas, 10.  Born in California, Glen grew up in Guayaquil, Ecuador, where his parents are still career missionaries. He remains active in the Guayaquil community supporting an organization that feeds malnourished children. And yes, he enjoys being flexible – both in his personal life and for his clients.

Learn more about how Glen can help you at www.glendsmithandassociates.com

469.212.8072 | www.glendsmithandassociates.com | 1029 Long Prairie Road, Suite C | Flower Mound, TX 75022

 

 

Steve Gamel and Lantana Living are not affiliated with Raymond James. Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Raymond James. Steve Gamel is not a client of Glen D. Smith & Associates or Raymond James Financial Services. Securities offered through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC.Investment advisory services offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors, Inc. Glen D. Smith & Associates is not a registered broker/dealer and is independent of Raymond James Financial Services, Inc.


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