Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:32 pm
A new service from Disciplined Financial Services Inc. will extend the Brookfield-based investment management company’s client-base to include any individual or business seeking financial advice.
The service is called Hourly Consulting and consists of face-to-face time with a Disciplined Financial advisor. Clients only pay for the amount of time they spend with the advisor, even if it is only 30 minutes, said Kenneth Fockel, principal and co-founder of Disciplined Financial.
"Hourly Consulting is for those not looking for money management services," Fockel said. "Hourly Consulting is for people who are looking for a second opinion, that need help with a financial problem or who need validation to make sure they are on track."
Clients who contact Disciplined Financial do not have to sign any long-term contracts or sit through a sales pitch for the company, said Eugene Szaj, principal and chief investment officer for the firm. The idea behind Hourly Consulting is to provide a focused and more direct service for clients who are not necessarily interested in signing up for a traditional financial plan package.
Potential clients are only required to fill out a questionnaire, which outlines the client’s financial situation, objectives and areas in which the client is seeking help, Fockel said.
The questionnaire also asks the client to rank the importance of statements about early retirement, mutual funds and preferred level of risk.
"Hourly Consulting has a strong appeal to the business owner," Fockel said. "Business owners tend to treat their businesses as their most important investment, but there is a need to take a look at developing financial security outside of business activities. Owners shouldn’t be 100-percent dependent on the success of their business."
With Hourly Consulting, Szaj and Fockel said they want to educate those that may not need a portfolio manager, but still need advice with various investments, whatever the size.
If clients find they are not sure where they stand financially, advisors ask clients to identify their goals in terms of family, work, leisure, financial objectives and the possibility of leaving an inheritance as starting points, Fockel said.
"The quality of financial education available to the broad public has not always been adequate," Fockel said. "The most important role we see ourselves in with Hourly Consulting is that of educator. People may put blind trust in an advisor or get involved with investments that are too risky or end up hurting themselves financially because they may not understand what they are doing."
The price of Hourly Consulting runs between $100 and $200 per hour, Szaj said. A consultation includes an in-depth look at a client’s financial question or problem. Using the questionnaire, Disciplined Financial advisors can create a financial roadmap for clients without unnecessary risk, Fockel said.
"People are looking for help without necessarily needing investment management services," Fockel said. "Hourly Consulting offers investment advice for 401(k) dollars, ideas for saving for a child’s college education or an independent perspective on insurance policies and coverage."
Hourly Consulting specializes in services including current and future cash flow planning, portfolio allocation and investment analysis, investment tax planning, estate plan evaluation, retirement income needs analysis, insurance coverage evaluation and education funding evaluation.
Businesses can also hire Disciplined Financial advisors to set up an informational seminar for employees. Educational programs for employees can center on a variety of topics including how to properly diversify investment dollars, retirement planning, managing insurance needs and financial planning in general – all without a sponsor attempting to sell a product or service, Fockel said.
Hourly Consulting advertisements have already received positive feedback, Szaj said.
Although other investment management companies do offer an hourly consulting service, Fockel said the service is not well-recognized outside of the industry.
A financial advisor from a competing investment management company has even referred a client to Hourly Consulting because the company did not provide a similar service, Adrian Zilvetti, a financial consultant for Disciplined Financial said.
"We wanted to remove the traditional barrier of tension that may exist with a commission based broker," Szaj said.
"Hourly Consulting opens the door for clients to take advantage of no-load investments that they are not normally shown through a traditional brokerage venue," Fockel said.
Founders: Kenneth Fockel, co-founder and principal and Eugene Szaj, principal and chief investment officer
Trade: Fee-based investment management and Hourly Consulting
Web site: www.disciplinedfinancial.com
December 10, 2004, Small Business Times, Milwaukee, WI