The Lucky Titan

Stress Free Money: Overcome These 7 Obstacles to Find Financial Freedom With Chad Willardson

October 21, 2021 Josh Tapp
The Lucky Titan
Stress Free Money: Overcome These 7 Obstacles to Find Financial Freedom With Chad Willardson
Show Notes Transcript

• Founder and President of Pacific Capital, a fiduciary wealth management firm in Southern California
• Elected City Treasurer for our city, managing the $350 million investment portfolio
• Co-Owner of the Draft Sports Complex
• Married father of five kids
• Chad’s been featured in: Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Inc., U.S. News & World Report, Entrepreneur Magazine, NBC News, Financial Advisor Magazine, California Business Journal, etc.
• Author of #1 Best-Seller (on Amazon) Stress Free Money: Overcome These 7 Obstacles to Find Financial Freedom

Josh: What is up everybody, Josh Tapp here again and welcome back to the lucky Titan and today we're here with Chad Willardson and this is an interview that's been really kind of in the making for many months now, I've got some complications of actually getting this scheduled and I'm really excited to have Chad here, finally, because he's got some amazing stuff to share with you guys today so Chad is the founder and president of Pacific Capital and the author of smart not spoiled so that book, he just informed me hit the number one bestseller in what category was again, wealth.. 

Chad: wealth management, yet wealth management. 

Josh: Wow, fantastic. That's a huge, huge accomplishment for him. So give yourself a pat on the back for us, Chad. 

Chad: Thank you. Thank you. 

Josh: Well, Chad, see what's up to everybody, first off, and then we'll continue the conversation here.

Chad: I'm really excited to be here, thanks for having me and I will add that Smirnoff sport was actually my second book. The first book was last year, and that was called stress free money. So

Josh: that one had multiple bestsellers as well then 

Chad: it did. Yes. 

Josh: Fantastic book. 

Chad: Yeah, thank you. 

Josh: it's probably over on one of my shelves. Well Chad kind of want to start this off by prefacing this I guess for our audience, you know, you're in an industry, that's what I would call an unsexy industry, not to not to offend you in any way, shape or form. 

Chad: Not at all.

Josh: It's it's an unsexy business. You know, it's not this hypee thing, I everybody just kind of know that at one point, they need it and they try to avoid it as much as possible, you know, it's like your account that people kind of clump you into the same thing but you've somehow made it into a sexy business that attracts amazing clients, and you've built a really strong brand so I'd love to know what kind of what your secret sauce is, first off behind growing your own community and your own brand around an unsexy model.

Chad: Yeah, I think the Not only is it not exciting of an industry, but it's often like a distrusted industry so we have that branding hurdle to overcome, I believe the overcoming the distrust in our industry has been simply a factor of us, being so incredibly transparent and with clients with marketing with everything, there's no secrets, there's no hidden agendas, we're just very straightforward oftentimes, we'll get referrals and we'll let them know that we actually don't think they need to hire a professional financial advisor to get what they need done and it's like the look on their faces such relief, they just needed to hear from someone and they, you know, they're typically being like, pressured and sold to and pitched by people in my industry so for them, it's like a real relief and I think that's just helped us build our brand as someone who's going to tell you the truth, no matter what, when it comes to attracting great clients, and marketing and branding, and that way, we're pretty specific on the mindsets of good clients that are fit for us in our first meetings, we call it the goals conversation we'll have with people will have a goals conversation, it's kind of a get to know you see if you're a fit, see if we're a fit and the last slide on our little demo deck that we show is if you have any of these thoughts, or mindsets, you're not a good fit for us, and we're not a good fit for you and it's pretty transparent it's like do you would you prefer to do your own investment trading, do you believe you're smarter than the experts, do you would you rather get hot investment tips and planning isn't as important goal focus planning isn't as important and so we we kind of flush out who's a good fit and who's not a good fit very early in the process, I think it saves everyone a lot of time and there's a lot more clarity and so the lifestyle branding of we're working with entrepreneurs, so we're really trying to free our entrepreneurial clients up to do what they're good at, to be focused in their unique gifts and to spend their time doing what they love, whether that's travel or sports or just business, whatever it is they want to do, we want to free up all their time to do just that so we're gonna take a lot off their plate and off their table, when it comes to other financial firms in the industry, I think they're more focused on a couple categories when we're really looking at the whole, the whole picture for the entrepreneur and trying to make their whole life a lot easier, a lot more stress free.

Josh: Right? I love that because that's, that seems to be the the number one factor I've seen with a lot of people who have built strong culture and strong integrity in their brand is is that who not to work with list, right, this is who we don't work with, especially in your industry and I know there's nothing more annoying being an agency owner and having somebody come in and feel like they know more than you do. 

Chad: Yeah. 

Josh: It's like, well, what's the point of paying me if you want to tell me what to do?

Chad: Yes, and it's as they read something on Google, or in an article that suddenly they're the marketing experts,

Josh: right exactly, this reminds me of a video. It's if if Google was a guy, if you've ever seen that

Chad: I haven’t, I have to check it out. 

Josh: he just yells at people all the time saying, He's like, just because it's there doesn't mean it's true. 

Chad: Right? Right. 

Josh: I love it. So it's really intriguing to me that, you know, you've been able to build a brand around this Pacific capital has become a really strong band around, you know, you'd writing a book and being seen on Forbes and some of these other places, you know, how have you kind of broken through that noise yourself, to get your own brand out there, but so growing like your overall brand, but glow, growing your personal brand as well.

Chad: One places that I've spent a lot of time in the last 10 years has been LinkedIn and frankly, that's opened a lot of doors for me, I think early on, especially LinkedIn was seeing as a place where people network for jobs, and they're looking for recruiting and things like that, and I was sharing things on LinkedIn back in the day, and I'd get no views and no, no likes no comments, it was kind of like sharing into a black hole but just being consistent over time and responding to people and sharing things I thought were insightful, I've been able to build a good, engaged group on there and you know, I've had some posts like ahead of post a couple weeks ago that went for 450,000 views and had 15 to 20,000 likes and comments and opportunities have come from those of those viral posts, if you will, and a lot of connecting and engaging and meeting new people have come from, from LinkedIn, frankly, that's been one of the platforms, that's been a real success for me.

Josh: Yeah, that's awesome. You know, we found that with a lot of people, especially the people who stuck with it, like you did with LinkedIn, because LinkedIn is now becoming all of a sudden all these people like, oh, LinkedIn is a good platform but you know, a lot of us who entered that early on, it's it's been a big, big play even for our company as well, just being being the value adders and clients come that way, it's really great, so let's let's get into kind of your methodology when it comes to you know, the the stress free money concept, you know, you talk about the seven, seven different ways to remove the stress, you know, from from making money and managing your money so walk us through what that is.

Chad: So first, I would just define stress free money, as it's the absence of worry, financial freedom is really the absence of worry about money, it's knowing that you can afford to do what you want to do, when you want to do it with whom you want to do it and that's a different number, it's not like a number defines financial freedom or stress free money, it's a different number for everyone and so in the first book, which came out last year, 2020, I really highlights some specific obstacles that you're going to face and ways to get around it, the first primary obstacle I see when it comes to achieving financial freedom and stress free money is not having clear goals and if you can imagine yourself going into the forest with your let's say, you're going for an archery competition and you've got your bows and your arrows, and there are no targets set up but you're in the forest and you got your you've got your gear and your equipment, and you're ready to go, like how are you going to measure progress and growth? How are you going to see if you're improving your archery skills when you've set up no targets? That's unfortunately, what most entrepreneurs do financially for their personal life so like, you would never think of starting a business and having no business plan or no business goals but unfortunately, with personal financial decisions, people are just hazy, they just, they kind of put it off to the backburner, and they're so focused on their business, that they don't really have a clear target for what they want and so that's that's part of the initial process is we help entrepreneurs, basically, we extract that vision from their mind, and and help them really put out what they want in the future for both their business and their personal life and then our job is to really try to craft the best strategy and the best plan to help them get there as quickly as possible. 

Josh: Yeah. Well, it seems like especially being an entrepreneur, right? One of our biggest obstacles is is the shiny object syndrome and I've actually talked to a lot of people who deal with other forms of investing recently and it's been really intriguing to me to hear that it's almost the bane of the entrepreneur that we're constantly like, oh, I should be reinvesting this back in my business and a lot of us aren't thinking about that the correct place that we should be putting it for the long term growth, you know, what's kind of your take on that, like, how much should you be putting towards that and how much should we be putting towards your long term stuff?

Chad: It's a great question. It really depends on what stage of business you're in but I do see the overconcentration of the business owners wealth is tied up in the business and that can go either way, you know, the phrase I like to tell people is concentration builds wealth and diversification preserves wealth so if you're in the very early stages, and you've got to reinvest every single penny back into your business, and then that's probably what you've got to do, because you're growing and building but at some point, you've built up substantial business, you've got lots of cash flow, you've got actually, your bank accounts have a lot of money just sitting there earning nothing but you feel like you need that security blanket because it's owned by the business, and it's sitting there, but you're not really compensating yourself for your family or your long term personal investments very much, then I think that's something that you need to reevaluate and see, does each dollar need to stay in one place or should I be spreading those investment dollars out a little bit so that's an important part of the early stages of strategic planning for business owner for sure.

Josh: Yeah, well, that? Well, and I want to kind of transition the conversation here a little bit so my wife is actually pregnant with our first child and so I grabbed this topic of grants, I love the topic that you've written of this, this most recent book, you know, like how to teach kids money. This is a topic my wife and I talk about a lot, because I'm a fifth-generation entrepreneur and I really heavily believe in entrepreneurship, as the path and I but it's kind of that hard thing about how do you teach money without being completely sitting out sitting in on the sidelines or being too involved so how are you, how do you teach your kids how to do that? 

Chad: Yes, so so in this book smart, not spoil, I'll show it since you do have a video audience. But I talked about the seven topics that kids really need to learn a lot about before they leave for high school, or leave high school, for college, or for other careers so essentially, you've got to teach them the money, approach, the money mindsets, that that will prepare them to be financially thoughtful adults and the challenge with that is even in let's say, parents have completely different mindsets about money themselves and so they've come up from very different backgrounds, their parents taught them differently than your parents and so what do you teach kids about money when you yourself don't even necessarily agree with everything your spouse thinks so so what I really did was focus in on the actual financial skills and topics, those things can be applied, and you can have your own spin on them as to like the section about learn to earn so one of the chapters let's see so chapter five is learn to earn and I talked about learning to earn money and to create value, I think we talked to kids about budgeting, and we talked to kids about spending, but we don't talk to them enough about how to be a contributing person to earn money and so an entrepreneur would really get excited about that chapter because I give ideas for teaching your kids how to be valuable how to be take initiative to earn money, one thing I say, and there's it my wife and I have never paid an allowance, not once my oldest is almost 17, my youngest is six and our kids have never been paid an allowance, we have a menu of opportunities, we've got a spreadsheet that has all kinds of things they can do to earn money, essentially, they're earning points every day and on Saturday, they turn on their points and they get paid but if they want to take it easy and cruise this week, and then they get invited to a birthday party or the movies or something else where they're going to have to spend money, they're not going to have it right they're not they're not going to reach their goals of saving up enough to pay for something that that they're invited to go do so it really is there's not much of a limit or a cap they can even initiate projects around the house and negotiate a deal like hey, I want to I want to mop the garage and vacuum the cars and do all this stuff and here's how much it's gonna how much time it will take me and here's how much money I think I should earn for that and we teach them a little bit of negotiating skills, they complete the project and they can earn it so if they want to earn more they need to work more and to me that's a principle that is extremely important to teach kids that you don't just get an allowance payment because you're breathing and because you made it to another Saturday and so that's something that we've that I you know I really hammered in in this book. 

Josh: Yeah, that's a really cool way to look at I know my parents did not believe in allowance at all and neither did my wife but it's such an interesting thing I get said that they can come to you and negotiate and it's kind of cool because it gives your kids that opportunity to say well what's providing the most value, they're eventually going to come to you and say hey, I you know, they know that mowing the lawn, I like them so much, but maybe you're deep cleaning the garage or something gets them a lot more they can come to you. 

Chad: Yep and they can customize it to what they're good at on a side note, accompanied That I co own that's not Pacific capital is and I mentioned that in the book but I think that your listeners might want to check that out for those who have kids. It's, it's a website and a company that teaches kids entrepreneurship and we've done virtual business fairs throughout the country, we have kids who are earning over $1,000 a month, not even 12 years old, because we've taught them how to set up a business and kids can really pick what they're good at what they like, and then figure out ways to earn money doing what they enjoy and I believe that's the best best path forward to success for kids is, don't try to force them or pigeonhole them into doing what mom and dad does for work, but let's, let's explore their own talents, their own interest and see what they're good at, and see if there's a way to be valuable and to earn money that way.

Josh: Love that. totally gonna go check that out after this that's really cool, because I think it's so interesting that a lot of people don't teach that to kit, right but we're teaching them hey, you've got it, you've got to do tasks, you've got to you've got to do the tasks that everybody else is willing to do and you kind of train them into being that the worker, right, the worker, be the hard worker but a lot of times we're not training them at all, there's other ways to leverage your time and the time of other people or the money of other people to guarantee wins so for you, Chad, have you been finding that, you know, with your own kids that you know, this methodology works really well or if like, they kind of resist it? 

Chad: oh, 100% more empowered, they're way more excited, they'll pull their sht out in the morning and, and start checking out things on their own. Whereas I think if you take the other approach, you're kind of nagging and bugging your kids to do stuff that they don't want to do,  when really they can, they can take the initiative and learn to be more proactive about it so we do the same thing with babysitters, that's kind of where it started so probably I was almost 17 or probably 15 years ago, when I created a babysitter guide, I essentially was paying babysitters based on what they wanted to do so I had a I had like a one page guide that said if they if they did XYZ they'd get a plus $1 per hour if they did ABC they got another plus $1 per hour. If they sat in front of a movie they got minus $1 per hour with the kids so like I just made it this Hey, it's up to you, you want to earn a really high paycheck for the for the night then being amazing babysitter tonight, if you want to chill on the couch and just put my kids in front of TV and and do nothing and then put them to bed that's fine, too. You're just going to get paid less and I The reason I did that is because I would see these incredible baby sitters go above and beyond for us and then these babysitter's that we came home when the house was a disaster and the kids were awake, they didn't even get put to bed and they were watching TV and they did nothing essentially and I was like we should not be paying these people the same rate, it doesn't make sense, right? We got to pay people based on their actual output and so that's when I made the babysitter guide probably in 2006 and I guess it's kind of just evolved into how we raise our kids.

Josh: That's brilliant. I love that I mean that's the kind of stuff you had for your employees it's a good idea honestly.

Chad: Absolutely. Absolutely.

Josh: The paper Performance Base I know for ours we do that frequently with our employees is saying hey, if you'll do XYZ and go above and beyond with this, you're obviously going to get more pay, I mean it just makes sense. Right now cool is that I mean it's fun that you're being able to instigate that with your with your kids. 

Chad: Absolutely. 

Josh: so everybody make sure you go check out that book so it is for sale there so it's the smart not spoiled, it's on Amazon, correct? 

Chad: Correct. Yep. 

Josh: So that's that's where everybody can go check it out and then also check out and then as well as with that, Chad, can you give us one final parting piece of guidance for our audience?

Chad: Yes, I would say the final piece of advice would be to make sure that you start having money conversations as a family. Whether you have kids in the home or not, I think it's extremely important to involve the other people in your home in the money making in a money decision process because I think that just it just brings a lot more unity and harmony and the decision making but it also gets biases and issues and concerns out on the table to talk about and if you do have kids at home, this is a great thing to teach them it's a great way to prepare them to be successful in their future, make Money, a topic that they feel comfortable talking about, and they just have much greater chance of success.

Josh: Awesome. I love that so much and so make sure you guys you're you're including your kids and that you're helping them understand that they can, they can earn money, it's like I think you should be instigating entrepreneurship from the beginning, it's such an awesome, awesome thing that you've got set up there. So Chad, thank you so much for coming on today. 

Chad: my pleasure, thank you.