Before Google was “Google”, before Facebook was “Facebook”, before AutoZone was “AutoZone” and before WalMart was “Walmart”, those names meant literally nothing to any of us. Seriously, what’s in a name? I mean what in the world is a “Twitter” or a “McDonalds”? By themselves those mean nothing. If Facebook would have been a bad product or technology we would never have heard of it...or it would have been a punchline like “MySpace” has become.
So what exactly is “Chartwell Financial Group” or “Ashford Advisors”? Well the answer to that is the first one is the name I have done business under since 2006 and the later is the one I’ll be doing business under beginning next year. But what does that mean to my clients? LITERALLY NOTHING. In 2000 I was working under the name, “First Financial Group” but when I decided to leave Washington DC I left that name behind and moved to Chartwell in Memphis, TN. Do you know how many of my clients needed to change their accounts I managed for them? Not a single one. How many of my clients’ statements looked different? Again, NONE. How many of my clients needed to get used to new logins or a new planning methodology? You guessed it….not a single one of them.
Why was that?
The answer is simple. None of my clients needed to change any of their accounts or financial plans with me because I have not changed who I am since July 1, 2000. I’ve been in this business since 1998 but for the past 17+ years no matter what the name on the top of my clients’ statements said, I have been doing business with the same broker dealer the entire time. This is true no matter what city I live in and no matter what the name on the front door says.
So in the next few months you will see a slight change when you log into your accounts online and when you receive statements in the mail. Instead of Chartwell Financial Group you will see Ashford Advisors. Ashford is a financial services firm that has been doing business in Atlanta, Georgia since 1898. Not a typo...1898. They recently acquired Chartwell. In fact, they have been managing Chartwell for the last year and a half and exactly nothing has change nor will change for any of Chartwell’s clients. The leadership of Ashford has determined that it is better to operate in every city as one name rather than keeping the names separate and unique.
When I was asked what I thought about the name change, I think my response surprised the leadership team. I simply said, “it literally doesn’t matter”. Names don’t mean anything. The work we do does. I’ve led my team for the last 20 years and I’ll continue to do so in the exact same way that has made us the choice of all of our clients. We don’t care what you call us...we just care that you call us! We have one purpose: to do what’s best for the client. We will never deviate from that, or listen to the crowd, or cower to what our clients hear on the radio on read on the internet. Our job is to build balance sheets for people and to help save them from financial failure. That hasn’t changed for 20 years and it won’t change when the name on our front door changes from Chartwell to Ashford. Your accounts will be the same, your login information remains the same, your PLANS remain the same. You can continue to call the same number and use the same email. We are here for you just like the last 20 years and hopefully for the next 30+ years.
If you have any questions about any of this, as always, call me or email me...you still know how to get ahold of me and you always will!