Nicholas Cosentino, CFP CEO of Financial Foundations Creating Value and Building Confidence with Clients. Vol. 5, No. 2 SUMMER/FALL 2013

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1 Vol. 5, No. 2 SUMMER/FALL 2013 A Publication of Pacific Life, Retirement Solutions Division Nicholas Cosentino, CFP CEO of Financial Foundations Creating Value and Building Confidence with Clients 10/ A A indd 1 10/18/13 11:52 AM

2 Nicholas Cosentino, CFP CEO of Financial Foundations Creating Value and Building Confidence with Clients Pacific View Summer/Fall A indd 2 10/18/13 11:52 AM

3 Nick Cosentino s main goal is to build a trusted advisor relationship with clients by simplifying their lives and providing them with the advice and direction necessary to prepare for life s challenges. As CEO of Financial Foundations in Framingham, Massachusetts, Nick has built a thriving financial planning firm by creating repeatable processes that is, defining precisely how he wants every member of his team to interact with clients and with each other. At Financial Foundations, we think about scalability, says Nick. If you want to grow your business, you need to have repeatable processes to leverage past successes. Nick credits Dan Sullivan, president of The Strategic Coach Program, for his help with creating the processes used at Financial Foundations. Each process is well planned and firmly grounded in Nick s unique vision of service excellence. Developing that vision didn t happen overnight. Nick started his career in 1987 as an intern for two insurance agents at what was then called Phoenix Mutual Life Insurance Company. In the 80s, financial planning was about selling life insurance. However, the gentlemen I worked with were very cutting edge, says Nick. They realized that financial planning was going to evolve into a discipline that s more about asset management. To these Phoenix Life agents, Nick represented the future. He had recently graduated from Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts, with a B.S. in finance and a keen interest in financial planning. His internship project was to research and Nick and the Financial Foundations advisors (L to R): Jonathan Koperniak, Bryan Amandolare, Jason Reesey, Matthew O Brien recommend software that would help the agents manage portfolios, produce reports, and create financial plans. Nick s relationship with Phoenix Life changed the course of his career. At the time, says Nick, Phoenix Life had an arrangement with New England Telephone. Agents could sell insurance on telephone company property. Nick started supporting agents who conducted on-site seminars. I decided to keep a file of all the people who attended but never followed up with an advisor. One day, I asked my boss, What do I do with these people? He said, What do you want to do with them? That was my introduction to cold calling and I was good at it! Life is sometimes complicated. However, with the right advice and planning, it can be made simpler. Years later, Phoenix Life s arrangement with New England Telephone ended. However, Nick s relationship with the company s executives remained solid. Their trust in him became the cornerstone of his independent practice. Today, Nick says that Financial Foundations number one source of business still comes from the employees of New England Telephone s successor company, Verizon. Nick currently has 15 employees of his own, including senior advisors, associate advisors, support professionals, and an in-house tax expert. His firm offers services from financial and tax planning, to wealth management, estate planning, and risk management. (Continued on next page) If you want to grow your business, you need to have repeatable processes to leverage past successes. Summer/Fall 2013 Pacific View A indd 3 10/18/13 11:52 AM

4 The Personal Foundation Builder Nick s proprietary client service process is designed to deliver superior results and a personalized client experience. According to Nick, This is what gets us out of bed and gets us excited to do what we do. 1 The First Interview Experience With advisor guidance, the client creates a personal values statement. 2 The Financial Foundation Assessment A personalized financial strategy is created, which incorporates the client s values statement to help eliminate dangers, and capture opportunities and strengths. 3 The Personal Foundation Plan A financial plan is presented that outlines the client s current reality and the accomplishments that will be necessary to achieve the ideal future. 4 The Financial Solutions Toolbox Personalized tools are identified to help the client turn the plan into reality. 5 The Milestone Review Method Every six to twelve months, the client meets with his or her advisor to review and, if necessary, update the plan. Nick says, Once we get them on track, we keep them on track. 3 Pacific View Summer/Fall A indd 4 10/18/13 11:52 AM

5 Nick strategizes with Financial Foundations advisors Jonathan Koperniak and Bryan Amandolare The Client Process Financial Foundations growing client roster is the result of Nick s business philosophies and a process developed by Nick called The Personal Foundation Builder. Nick says, In our company, we make a distinction between an introduction and a referral. A referral means getting a name from someone. We ask for introductions. If a current client likes our services, we request that he or she introduce us to a friend or business associate. So rather than calling new clients for a first meeting, they re calling us. In that first meeting, a senior advisor begins to guide the client through The Personal Foundation Builder. We say that if we re going to be your trusted advisor, we have to do two things: create value in our relationship as well as build your confidence and trust, says Nick. The process does that through a series of five steps. Each step is designed to create a new capability for the client, resulting in an accomplishment that builds his or her confidence. For example, step one of the process involves asking clients why money is important to them, which helps create a personal values statement. That statement is an important accomplishment, says Nick. People make decisions based on their values. In step one, we get to know those values and clients realize that the financial plan we create will be right for them, because it s based on their values. When creating a financial plan, Nick s team focuses on three goals. First, identify financial-planning dangers such as running out of money that will prevent the firm from achieving the client s ideal future, and make plans to help eliminate those dangers. Second, capture the client s best financial-planning opportunities such as taking full advantage of employer-sponsored benefits. Third, reinforce the client s financial strengths. Financial Foundations is well-positioned to do all three. (Continued on next page) We make a distinction between an introduction and a referral. Nick takes special pride in the team atmosphere at Financial Foundations Nick at his alma mater, Bentley University, which is a major recruiting pool for interns Summer/Fall 2013 Pacific View A indd 5 10/18/13 11:52 AM

6 Every Financial Foundations senior advisor has come from our associate program. Case in Point: A Customer Experience I was with a client who recently lost his wife. She had been sick for over a year. We enabled him to retire early, so he could spend time being a caregiver and being present for her. We also did things for him that he didn t expect. We helped him communicate his situation to his employee benefits department. With his permission, we set up a phone conference with him and the department, and acted as a liaison. I think it s great to help clients manage their finances. But what s really important is helping them with life. That s what it s really all about. As a boutique financial planning and asset management firm, Financial Foundations services go beyond managing investments. Its advisors also offer cash flow analysis, tax analysis, tax preparation, estate planning, and insurance planning. For clients who work at Verizon, there is also a detailed employer-sponsored benefit analysis. We have software that can illustrate how Verizon executives can create retirement income using incentive compensation awards, says Nick. It s very sophisticated. The Business Process The Personal Foundation Builder is good for Nick s clients and for his business. The process has helped Nick build a distinctive brand by ensuring that all clients, no matter which Financial Foundations advisor guides them, will have the same comprehensive, confidence-building experience. Nick also builds the future of his business through a robust mentoring process for smart, self-motivated individuals who want to break into the business. Candidates are offered six-month internships at the company. The best and brightest are then hired as associate advisors who spend six years learning every aspect of the business. All the senior team members who advise clients have come from our associate program, says Nick. So this is where they ve grown up. Before they advise their first client, they ve lived and breathed our brand for six years, and they know how to provide service that our firm can be proud of. Why Pacific Life? Financial Foundations uses multiple products from Pacific Life including mutual funds, annuities, and life insurance to help clients achieve their goals. Nick describes his Pacific Life consultative wholesaler, Mike Donnelly, as a consummate professional. He s the kind of partner you want from a strategic relationship, says Nick. Whether in the context of asset management or using tax-deferred income tactics, Mike really understands our business and what we re trying to do here. You can t put a price on that. Nick and his wife, Dorothy, in Maui, Hawaii Nick with daughters (L to R) Faith, Delaney, and Meredith at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland 5 Pacific View Summer/Fall A indd 6 10/18/13 11:52 AM

7 Mike Donnelly, Pacific Life Regional Vice President, understands all aspects of Nick s business The Human Process Nick may love process, but in his view, process is just a means for accomplishing his real goals: helping and nurturing people. It s something he is always focused on. Through his broker/dealer, Commonwealth Financial Network, Nick regularly contributes time and funds to charitable causes, such as the Commonwealth Care Foundation, Easter Seals, and Smiling Kids. On the personal side, he loves traveling and spending time with his wife and three children. He and his family have wonderful memories of a recent trip to Ireland. In his business life, Nick says that what really drives him is helping other people succeed. I measure my success by how successful my clients are in reaching their goals, and how successful my employees are in their careers. At Financial Foundations, we work on what we call the gratitude principal. When our clients feel grateful, they introduce us to new clients. That only happens when we exceed clients expectations and give them a level of service they can t get anywhere else. The Consultative Wholesaler s View It s a pleasure to work with Nick and his team. They are dedicated professionals who understand the changing landscape of retirement planning. They also embrace The Pacific Life Experience and the value that our service and multipleproduct solutions bring to their client relationships. Mike Donnelly Regional Vice President Pacific Life Personal Foundation Builder, First Interview Experience, Financial Foundation Assessment, Personal Foundation Plan, Financial Solutions Toolbox, and Milestone Review Method are registered trademarks of Financial Foundations, Inc. Commonwealth Financial Network is a registered trademark of Commonwealth Equity Services, Inc. Pacific Life is unaffiliated with Nicholas Cosentino, Financial Foundations, Inc., or Commonwealth Financial Network (member FINRA). Investors should carefully consider an investment s risks, charges, limitations, and expenses. This and other information about Pacific Life variable insurance products and Pacific Life Funds are provided in the applicable product and underlying fund prospectuses. These prospectuses should be read carefully before investing. This material is not intended to be used, nor can it be used by any taxpayer, for the purpose of avoiding U.S. federal, state, or local tax penalties. This material is written to support the promotion or marketing of the transaction(s) or matter(s) addressed by this material. Pacific Life, Pacific Life Funds, their distributors, and respective representatives do not provide tax, accounting, or legal advice. Any taxpayer should seek advice based on the taxpayer s particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor or attorney. Summer/Fall 2013 Pacific View A indd 7 10/18/13 11:52 AM

8 For more information contact: Nicholas Consentino, CFP Financial Foundations, Inc. 600 Worcester Road, Suite 101 Framingham, MA (508) Securities offered through Commonwealth Financial Network, member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services, and fixed insurance products and services offered through Financial Foundations, a registered investment adviser. You should carefully consider an investment s risks, charges, limitations, and expenses. This and other information about Pacific Life variable annuities and Pacific Life Funds are provided in the applicable product and underlying fund prospectuses. These prospectuses are available from your financial advisor or by calling the number listed above. Read them carefully before investing. Variable annuities are long-term investments designed for retirement. The value of the variable investment options will fluctuate and, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than the original cost. Annuity withdrawals and other distributions of taxable amounts, including death benefit payouts, will be subject to ordinary income tax. If withdrawals and other distributions are taken prior to age 59½, an additional 10% federal tax may apply. A withdrawal charge also may apply. Withdrawals may reduce the value of the death benefit and any optional benefits. IRAs and qualified plans such as 401(k)s and 403(b)s are already tax-deferred. Therefore, a deferred annuity should be used only to fund an IRA or qualified plan to benefit from the annuity s features other than tax deferral. These include lifetime income, death benefit options, and the ability to transfer among investment options without sales or withdrawal charges. Pacific Life refers to Pacific Life Insurance Company and its affiliates, including Pacific Life & Annuity Company. Insurance products are issued by Pacific Life Insurance Company in all states except New York and in New York by Pacific Life & Annuity Company. Product availability and features may vary by state. Each company is solely responsible for the financial obligations accruing under the products it issues. Insurance product and rider guarantees are backed by the financial strength and claims-paying ability of the issuing company and do not protect the value of the variable investment options. Reprinted with permission from Pacific Life Insurance Company, Retirement Solutions Division. All rights reserved. Copyright 2013 Pacific View. Mutual funds are offered by Pacific Life Funds. Variable insurance products and mutual funds are distributed by Pacific Select Distributors, Inc. (member FINRA), a subsidiary of Pacific Life Insurance Company and an affiliate of Pacific Life & Annuity Company (Newport Beach, CA). Mutual funds as well as variable and fixed annuity products are available through licensed third-party broker/dealers A A indd 18 10/18/13 11:52 AM

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