It took Nancy Graham 20 years to become an overnight success.
“Being a wealth manager is not an easy business to build; but I knew I could do it,” Nancy explains.
As a portfolio manager at PWL Capital Nancy’s job is to help her clients be come comfortable with their wealth and how it is invested. “The idea is to save and spend for great happiness.” She counsels, advises and invests her clients’ money, Typically over a long timeframe for life events like retirement or next generation wealth.
Being a wealth manager is not an easy business to build; but I knew I could do it
“I started working in tax for an accounting firm but found little work / life balance there,” Nancy reveals. “It was the right path but not the right fit.”
With 3 children, Nancy needed a career that she could build on her own terms. And she found that in PWL Capital. Although predominantly a male dominated industry, the atmosphere and culture at PWL Capital appealed to her.
“PWL Capital operated similar to a start-up when I first arrived,” she illustrates. “I liked their values; they were aligned with mine. We offer evidence-based investing, we listen to our clients and we operate with empathy. Because this firm was founded on principals of transparency and working in client’s best interests, I knew this was a place I could build my business.
I had to invest in my future and the overall freedom of decision making I was striving for
Empathy and education is at the core of what Nancy and her team offers. In fact, Nancy has an online video segment called ‘No Dumb Questions’ to help add a culture of demystifying wealth management and answering questions people are sometimes reluctant to ask about investing, stocks, bonds and so on.
“There is nothing worse than meeting with your financial advisor and either not knowing what they are talking about, or worse, being too afraid to ask,” Nancy explains. “The video segment speaks to those common questions people ask. And hopefully makes them more comfortable.”
Although running her own business was intended to help Nancy build a lifestyle by choice, it has been a long road getting there. “Like most entrepreneurs, you invest a great deal of time and energy when building the business. It wasn’t always easy or clear how well this would work, but I didn’t have a choice. I had to invest in my future and the overall freedom of decision making I was striving for,” Nancy explains.
I knew I could do it
And that is why it has taken 20 years to become an ‘overnight success’. Nancy put in the work over the last 20 years to give her the freedom of decision making she desired and the work / life balance she couldn’t find working for someone else.
Now, through her hard work and success, Nancy has the flexibility to make decisions that are right for clients and for her. “I am not good at asking people for their business. But in order to build my business I have learned to get out of my comfort zone. I would look around at my peers, and I knew I would be a great wealth manager and business owner. I knew I could do it,” Nancy explains.
Nancy also takes a pride in the PWL Capital office. Located across from Dow’s Lake with 180 degree views of the NCC property, the office is modern, open, inviting and encourages collaboration. It has a beautiful open concept client hospitality bar upon entry, and each office is uniquely designed.
I work in my clients’ best interest, not my own
Nancy’s office sports a full wall collage with imagery and words important and relevant to her like empathy, compassion and respect. PWL does not work on a commission basis so Nancy is never in conflict with which investments to choose. “This is part of our values and ethics. I work in my clients’ best interest, not my own.”
Building a business over 20+ years takes persistence. Now as an established business owner, Nancy has learned to put herself first when necessary. “I choose where I engage in all areas of my life,” Nancy enthuses. “Let yourself off the hook and enjoy life for yourself. Have a support network. And love what you do.”