Why I Became a Financial Planner
By Matt Ward, CFP®, CRPC®
I initially started off in the insurance world. I was good at my job and quickly rose to the ranks of the corporate ladder, but after a few years, I wasn’t overly happy with my career. It was a fast-paced environment focused more on selling products than getting to know the end clients. I began looking for a little inspiration. I liked the idea of going into business for myself and setting my own schedule, but I didn’t yet know what I would do. I knew I wanted to do something that would allow me to work more closely with individuals.
After about a month of searching, I called my grandfather and asked for some advice. As a successful business owner himself, I’ve always looked up to him and deeply valued his personal and professional opinion. We discussed how I was considering going into business for myself. I mentioned a couple of ideas and he brought up the family investment business. I was open to this idea, and it was one that I had not thought of yet. I talked about wanting to work closely with people, helping them to achieve their goals, and how I wanted a career that provided me with personal fulfillment. So far it seemed to check all of the boxes. My grandfather suggested I consider meeting with our long-time colleague, Mike Fletcher, who worked in the business alongside my mom for over 40 years, a friend and work colleague of our family. It was an “aha!” moment realizing that what I was searching for had been right in front of me all along. I moved back to my hometown of Fort Worth, Texas, and the rest is history. I went on to obtain my certified financial planner™ certification and the chartered retirement planning counselor℠ designation—and never looked back.
My Career Today
My career today is exactly where I hoped for it to be. I wouldn’t change a thing. In my practice today, I focus on two things: retirement planning and tax management for businesses. And I love both for different reasons.
When it comes to retirement, many clients have the belief that retirement is the end goal, often focusing and prioritizing on saving. However, not a lot of attention is brought up around spending, retirement planning, or tax planning. In retirement, equally as important to saving is coming up with a plan for managing and spending. In my job as a financial planner, I’m able to work with people throughout this phase. From my perspective, retirement is just the beginning of one’s financial journey.
With business owners, it’s all about proactive tax planning. I am passionate about helping reduce our clients’ business tax so they can focus on expansion and innovation. This is my area of specialty and I have extensive experience in designing business tax management plans.
At New Century Investments, we provide holistic financial services, including tax preparation and analysis. This allows me to feel more confident in the advice I give to clients since we have deep knowledge in taxes as well as financial planning. I can look at an investment portfolio and marry it with a client’s tax return, analyzing everything in a comprehensive manner, providing the best advice for a client’s situation.
Sticking to a plan isn’t always easy, whether it’s a spending plan, tax plan, or investment plan. Helping my clients manage the emotional ups and downs of their finances is a big part of my role, and the services we provide certainly help me do that.
The Best Part
The best part of what I do is being able to work closely with my clients and see the tangible results of the advice I provide. It’s truly fulfilling to take the unique pieces of a client’s financial story and develop a plan that fits their needs. There’s no better feeling than when it all comes together and my clients are able to achieve their goals. And it doesn’t hurt that I get to work alongside my grandfather three months of the year when he comes in to help out with tax season!
As a financial planner, I always strive to provide my clients with personalized trust and guidance throughout their financial journey. As a CPA/CFP Investment Firm, we have a deep ability to design, advise, and manage business, tax, retirement, and investments. With this breadth of knowledge and service, I’m able to provide peace of mind to my clients that their entire financial future is in good order.
Take the Next Step
Matt Ward is a financial advisor and the president of New Century Investments, an independent investment advisory firm serving business owners, pre-retirees, and retirees in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and beyond. Matt is passionate about integrating investing, planning, and tax management into a holistic approach. Matt’s breadth of knowledge and experience in both taxes and investment management sets him apart, giving him the ability to design, advise on, and manage business strategies, tax efficiency, and retirement planning. He is known for his care and attention to detail and works hard to develop personal relationships with each of his clients so they can benefit from his customized service and guidance. He loves walking with his clients through their financial journey, supporting them and celebrating with them as they reach their goals.
Matt graduated from Texas Tech University with a bachelor’s degree and is a certified financial planner™ and chartered retirement planning counselor℠ professional. When he’s not working, you can find Matt hiking, playing the guitar, and spending time with his family. To learn more about Matt, connect with him on LinkedIn!