Editor’s note: This story previously appeared in the 2014 edition of Young Influentials.
The best advice Mary Beth Storjohann has received is to walk through every door that opens for you.
Storjohann, 29, is a financial planner, speaker, writer and coach. She took her 10 years of industry experience and launched Workable Wealth in August 2013 to help 20- and 30-year-olds across the country make financial decisions.
Instead of working with stacks of paper and mahogany desks, she leverages technology using DropBox, Skype and Google Hangouts to coach her clients on the basics of money in their comfort zone. She uses social media to establish herself as a millennial finance expert.
“I’ve always been passionate about the basics,” Storjohann said. “Money can get really complicated in my industry. I was passionate about education and helping not just pre-retirees or people with a lot of money -- but people who feel like they don’t have a lot of money to feel like they can take control of it and manage their finances, too. That’s what drove me throughout the industry.”
She uses her personal connection to her clients’ experiences to relate to them and gain their trust.
“As a newlywed, as someone starting a family, I’m going through the same experiences at the same exact time. I’m current with how to go through them and in the market today,” Storjohann said.
Storjohann works with newlyweds when they’re trying to find out how to merge their finances or when they’re having kids and don’t know what types of wills or life insurance to get.
“People tend to seek out financial guidance when they’re going through some kind of transition or if they just want a second opinion,” Storjohann said.
Storjohann wanted to focus her practice on serving millennials. She wanted to have control of her brand and the messages she puts out there, and that’s why she decided to leave HoyleCohen, a local wealth advisory firm, in January to start her own business.
She is part of a Mastermind Group with six other financial planners across the country who discuss best practices, client situations and ways to move their businesses forward. The group embraces their competition and practice the “abundance mentality” to streamline their businesses to save money and time, and serve the clientele.
She measures her success by her clients’ satisfaction.
Money was always a “big topic” for Storjohann and her family -- “It was always talked about, always discussed and sometimes fought about,” she said.
“When I was working at the financial planning firm, I realized that you don’t have to let money control you -- it doesn’t have to be stressful," Storjohann said. "You can control it and, with planned organization, you can use it to live the life you want."
As a financial services major at San Diego State University, Storjohann realized that her friends and classmates could use the information she was gaining from her education: learning to budget for trips to Europe, paying off student loans and using a credit card responsibly.
“It was at that time that I got really passionate about educating my peers on financial planning,” Storjohann said.
Storjohann volunteers her expertise with the Wounded Warrior Project, where she has partnered through the Financial Planning Association to provide one-on-one financial planning.