My name is Nahi Kau and I had the pleasure of interning at Avier Wealth Advisors this summer. After the first few days of work it became quite apparent that the firm functions as a strong team, with each member adding value to the service we provide. I was interested in learning more about the individuals that make up this team, so I took the opportunity to sit down and discuss the life of one team member, Kaleb Strawn.
Kaleb Strawn is a 24-year old Client Service Associate (CSA) with a B.A. in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance and Economics from Saint Martin’s University and has been an integral member of the Avier team since November 2017. As a CSA, Kaleb’s role is to ensure that everything operates smoothly with clients and within the smaller work teams, where he collaborates with a Lead and Associate Advisor. Kaleb’s Avier journey started during his job search process shortly after graduating college. He knew he wanted to work for a Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) because they are mandated by a fiduciary standard, opposed to a broker-dealer that must fulfill a suitability obligation. This means that an RIA has an obligation to advise in clients’ best interests. On the other hand, a broker-dealer only needs to reasonably believe that their advice is financially suitable for clients and may act in their own best interest. This may lead to a conflict with clients because brokers are incentivized to sell investments that garner higher commissions or fees.
Kaleb found the Avier job post on LinkedIn, and instantly connected with Dave Welty in his interview. His contagious enthusiasm and strong desire to learn made him a perfect fit in the Avier work environment. For Kaleb, financial advising was the ideal industry. In his role he can help individuals by solving their complex problems with a clear solution. This excited Kaleb as “the job is more than just earning a paycheck.” Satisfying the client’s needs and working comprehensively are motivating factors for this CSA, and as he puts it, “everything I do is a reflection of myself.”
Early in the morning, when Kaleb arrives at work, the first thing he does is check his agenda and prepare for his meetings. Interacting with clients face-to-face is his favorite part of the day because he can create a positive impact in their lives. After his meetings, Kaleb enjoys eating lunch with his coworkers and values the conversations that they have. Recently, he has been staying after work to study for his upcoming CFP exam, but he also likes to make time to go the gym or spend time with his roommates.
Outside of the office, Kaleb enjoys exploring Seattle breweries and golfing with friends. Kaleb is also a former collegiate soccer player and has applied his teamwork skills to his job. Kaleb has a strong bond with his family and values the time that he spends with them. Similarly, Avier has been a positive experience. Kaleb described it as a “work hard, play hard” culture filled to the brim with knowledgeable individuals. When asked about who his biggest role model was at the office, Kaleb responded, “I pull strengths from every person in the office.” This exemplifies Kaleb’s admiration towards his fellow team members, and his dedication to learn from the people that surround him.
Looking back through his journey at Avier, Kaleb feels that his experience has been both positive and educational. Being one of the newer employees at the firm, he has successfully adapted to Avier’s work processes while contributing his own ideas to the team. When asked about his one piece of advice to those just starting at Avier, he said, “to not be shy to ask questions. No one expects you to know everything going in.” This is a quality lesson to incoming employees, but this team member has his eyes set forward.
After working for nearly two years at Avier, Kaleb is looking at his future with the firm. Within a year, he is determined to rise through the ranks to the level of an Associate Advisor, after he passes the CFP exam in November. Looking even further down the road, Kaleb aspires to be a Lead Advisor. In his own words, “things are happening sooner rather than later” for this motivated CSA. Kaleb is grateful for his job which is always pushing him to grow. He feels that the firm has a clear mission and is fortunate to be a key contributor. The future looks bright for this CSA.