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What Can an Escape Room Teach You About Financial Planning?

What Can an Escape Room Teach You About Financial Planning?
When you truly trust the people you work with, you aren’t afraid to be locked up with them, at least for a little while.  At Hilltop, we recently put our mutual trust to the test and went to an escape room for a little bit of team building.  If you don’t know what an escape room is, I should explain: the host locks you in a room, and you escape by finding clues, solving puzzles, and answering riddles.  (Of course, there’s a panic button that lets you out in a hurry – as our host explained, the fire marshall frowns on locking people in.)  This was an exciting and fun-filled experience, and after we finished, I couldn’t help but see some parallels with financial planning:   Work together and use everybody’s skill set During our escape room experience, Brittany, the team’s math major, deciphered one particular clue pretty quickly.  But she had to explain it to the rest of us a couple times before we understood what she had done. ...

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Do right, even when things get muddy

Do right, even when things get muddy
In my spare time, I enjoy training for and running obstacle course races.  These involve such challenges as crawling through mud, climbing over walls, and experiencing mild electric shocks.  Fun, right?  No, I’m serious, it is tremendous fun.  But to you, this may sound crazy, so you’ll choose not to participate.  That’s fine, it’s not for everyone.  This is a voluntary challenge, and I have chosen to subject myself to it. Similarly, we at Hilltop have accepted a challenge that many financial advisors eschew.  When we became a Registered Investment Advisor one year ago, we took on a burden known as the fiduciary legal standard.  This means that we must act in our clients’ best interests at all times, which is the rule for RIAs.  We strive for the fiduciary standard not because it’s fun, but because it’s the right thing to do.  However, the Department of Labor is on the verge of enacting a rule that would cha ...

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