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Active investment management’s weekly magazine for fee-based advisors

Michael Murphy MBA, ChFC, RICP • Chesapeake, VA
Lincoln Financial Securities Corporation

I have always been a numbers person. I studied marine engineering systems at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and also received a master’s degree in systems engineering. After college, I worked for many years as an engineer at Newport News Shipbuilding in its reactor servicing department.

While working at the shipyard and completing my U.S. Navy Reserve service, I decided I wanted to transition into financial services. I completed MBA studies while I was working and earned two key advisor credentials in the retirement-planning field. I have now been working as a financial advisor since 2004 and am currently with Lincoln Financial Securities.

While I have clients from all walks of life, more than half came initially through my relationships at the shipyard, through my military service relationships, or through related industries in our area. This seems natural to me since I understand these workplaces and we all speak the same language as it relates to the engineering field.

There is a great need for these types of employees to engage the services of a highly knowledgeable financial advisor, especially when it comes to retirement planning. I realized that the most important thing facing folks today is how to put all of the pieces together to actually create a retirement income plan. People spend their lives working, investing to some degree, and accumulating a level of wealth through retirement plans. Very little attention is focused on how an individual or a couple can unwind all of this in the most efficient way.

Strategies such as pension maximization, Social Security claiming for a couple, the various ways one can use life insurance, and tax-advantaged income planning are areas that the average worker, no matter how well-educated, may never have been exposed to. These are the areas where I can bring real expertise to bear, along with developing investment portfolio solutions that are actively managed to help mitigate risk and attempt to provide a smoother investment experience over the long term.

While personal referrals account for many of my new clients, I spend a lot of time prospecting in the workplace, both speaking to current clients and meeting new people on an informal basis. Invariably, someone will ask what I do for a living, and I give them a quick overview of the services I provide and the issues I can help them address. This often leads to an introductory meeting.

I also do a lot of research about the employees of a company to identify qualified prospects. Essentially, it is an issue of demographics. I am trying to find employees in the right age range who should be starting to think about their retirement. I am not a fan of cold calling. Instead, I will identify a prospect list and send out letters introducing myself, my background, and my qualifications. It might pose some provocative questions about how they are currently thinking about their retirement. It also offers a no-obligation consultation and first meeting. I might follow-up with a phone call after a certain amount of time has passed if I have not received a response. The bottom line is that I am able to keep my client base growing, which can fuel further referrals.

Disclosure: Securities and advisory services offered by and through Lincoln Financial Securities Corporation, a registered broker-dealer. Member SIPC. Lincoln Financial Securities and their representatives may not offer legal or tax advice. Please see your personal professional regarding your individual circumstances. 4016 Raintree Road, Suite 220, Chesapeake, VA 23321. LFS-1788568-050417.

Photography by Don Monteaux

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