My Favorite Parts of Tony Robbins ‘Unshakable’

When it comes to dialing people in on how to take command of their future no one can compare to Tony Robins.  In his book on how to gain financial freedom Tony lays out what every American should know before giving one dollar to anyone (including Wall Street). 

In his book Unshakable Tony delves into different approaches of how to manage your financial affairs.  This is a subject that impacts peoples lives the most, yet they take the least amount of time to explore, compare, and contrast different options.   

Money is stressful!  It is totally understandable the people become defensive and entrenched with whatever system they have committed to.  They feel like everyone has an opinion, no one person can be right,, everyone is trying to sell them something, so they stick with what is comfortable. 

This is the area where the differences are big, a little nudge in the right direction compounds over time, and these decisions have the biggest consequences over time. 

After all, there are approximately 40,000 individual stocks worldwide you can invest in.  You want the Warren Buffet indexed buy-and-hold model?  There are over 9500 different mutual funds and 1600 ETFs in the US alone.  Don’t get started on fund loads, fees, 12b1 fees, back door deals to brokerage houses etc…in the book it is put perfectly “imagine standing at an ice cream counter and having to choose from over 50,000 flavors.”  Most people say to heck with it and take vanilla and walk out the door.  

There are certain investment options that have historically outperformed others, and with some internal fees (that you’ll never see) letting someone captive to a broker model buy and sell mutual funds (“rebalancing” which often means rebalancing the money from your account to theirs) may cost you untold sums.  What most consumers don’t know, or take the time to investigate, is that the guy behind the counter gets scoop of their ice cream every time he recommends a different flavor, so he is incentivized to find a new flavor of the week, and keep collecting more for himself.  Often times mutual fund companies have a revenue sharing (read: kickback) scheme with these brokerage houses that compound this conflict of interest.   

Tony has clearly been exposed to this world (people with a lot of money have a lot of people trying to convince them their way is the best.)  He saw through the “sizzle” and realized the best way not just for wealthy individuals, but all people to grow their wealth and being able to rest easy knowing the guy scooping the ice cream is doing what is best for them.  Enter, the Registered Investment Advisor. 

Financial advisors can be worth every penny you pay them however it is the inherent conflict of interest in the broker model (the ice cream jockey who gets paid for trading one flavor for another) that is the hurdle you have to get over with your broker.  According to Fidelity Institutional Asset Management only about 10% of asset managers are fee only advisors.  Fee only advisors have one goal; to increase your bottom line.  You can believe that your advisor is Mother Theresa, or a self-interested fee maximizing wolf of Wall Street, but at the end of the day the fee-only advisor’s goal is the same.  To maximize your returns through the lowest cost, best performing investment vehicles. 

So it seems clear, you would only choose to work with a fee only financial advisor, fiduciary, and someone who does better when you do (and also feels your pain when the market corrects!)  Unfortunately, statistically, the options aren’t that clear.  As Tony points out in his book, a lot of advisors are “dually registered” or are a “hybrid” shop.  Hybrids are great for getting better gas mileage, but that is about it.  In investments, like with so many marketing ploys, being a “hybrid” advisor allows for your representative to sooth you with the “I do better when you do better” speech while having another commission base channel they won’t advertise.  It is imperative to know you are working with someone who is legally licensed to do only fee only advising.   

Capital Partners Group was started as a 100% fee only advisory, with completely independent advisors and agents who work for their clients, not Wall St, and not any company.