During times of volatility, clients should work with financial advisors to help them weather the storm. That’s when Laura Wellon, Senior Vice President–Wealth Management with the Wile Consulting Group at UBS in Atlanta, shines. “When a client is going through a transition, whether it’s a divorce, loss of a spouse, selling a business or entering retirement, I want to be there to help,” she says. “Those are situations where clients can feel vulnerable. There’s a lot of uncertainty. They need a hand to hold each step of the way. It’s rewarding to see fear subside as we work towards taking control of the situation together.”
For example, when one of Wellon’s clients lost her husband following a six-month battle with cancer, she needed support. “She had never written a check or paid bills and didn’t know the passwords for any of their bank accounts. I sat down on the floor with her to help her sort everything out,” Wellon recalls. “It is fulfilling seeing her years later, thriving and confident in herself.”
“When a client is going through a transition, whether it’s a divorce, loss of a spouse, selling a business or entering retirement, I want to be there to help.”
— Laura Wellon
Operating Under the Golden Rule
That’s the kind of service the entire team at Wile Consulting Group aims to provide every client, whether it be their private retail clients or institutional plan sponsors. “We operate under the golden rule. Their success is our success,” says Wellon, a graduate of the University of Georgia. “We stress that our core focus is our clients, and we strive to help them reach their goals.”
Wellon and her team firmly believe that one of the keys to a successful relationship with their clients is through education. The Wile Consulting Group offers educational events for clients, such as its annual “Family Forum,” which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary. Clients bring family members, including children and parents, to the all-day event to hear experts discuss a variety of topics such as investing, tax and estate planning strategies, long-term care, Social Security and planning for college. The goal is to help provide an avenue for learning across generations that clients may not otherwise have access to. Wellon’s team prides itself on its diversity of competency and background.
“We stress that our core focus is our clients and we strive to help them reach their goals.”
— Laura Wellon
It values collaboration across team member roles and functions to maximize the wealth of knowledge and experience between them. To facilitate greater feedback within the group, they recently moved to a trading desk where all team members work alongside one other. Having a team that challenges each other to seek out optimal solutions is something Wellon believes clients can benefit from.
The Wile Consulting Group is proud of its blend of youth and experience. The team of eight boasts multiple industry awards, recognitions and certifications. Wellon personally touts a firm certification for its Portfolio Management Program (PMP) and an industry designation as a Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA®) from the Exit Planning Institute, and has been awarded several independent industry recognitions.
Credentials like these are indeed impressive, more so considering that everyone on the team is 40 years old or younger. Yet they have more than 75 years combined experience in the industry. This speaks to their team’s mission: to inspire confidence through leadership and Advice. Beyond investing.