People ask what motivated me to change from being a strategic planning consultant for major corporations to becoming a personal fee-only financial advisor.

The process began when a family member faced a personal crisis and asked me to review her financial situation. I was shocked by what I found. Her finances were in disarray. She had been sold high commission funds that were not appropriate given her age, and her portfolios had been churned. This resulted in excessive commissions, hidden fees, and poor performance. Overlapping insurance policies were in place, and there were gaps in her estate plan. She needed a financial advisor whom she could trust.

During this time, business associates and friends also had concerns and asked me to review their financial plans and investments. Since my consulting work required anticipating future economic trends, I was asked to apply these insights to their individual financial matters. These people found that my experience as a teacher was helpful as it allowed me to both listen and communicate clearly. It became apparent that my business and financial insights were a natural fit for financial advising.

Today as a financial advisor, I enjoy educating people about potential risks and opportunities. At Street Smart Financial in Lexington, MA, we get to know our clients and their families. Our goal is to demystify personal finance and help people reach their financial goals.

Rand Spero, CFP®, MBA, Ed.M.