I reached out to Lauri Itkin (AKA The Options Lady) and asked if she would write a post about her most “inspiring client.” The person who, after working with her, Laurie could sit back with a huge smile, and think “THIS is why I started The Options Lady!! To help women like this who are SO in need of my help so she can take control of her financial future. And conversely, someone who could inspire and push her as well. If you have a friend who could use help managing her financial future, or someone who could benefit from Laurie’s amazing option trading coaching, could you please email this post to her?
Sometimes a client will tell me I have inspired her to stop procrastinating about getting her finances in order and take action. That does feel good, I admit. But what really feels good is when a client inspires ME. I have met so many inspirational women from my coaching practice but one woman in particular stands out. I will call her “Violet.”
Several months ago I posted a Facebook message looking for three female volunteers whose investing progress I could profile in a book I’m planning to write. In exchange, I would offer free coaching on stock and options trading. Violet was one of the first women to respond.
In her 20’s Violet was a single mom and worked full time as a sales assistant for a few different brokerage firms. She recalls how she was made to wear pantyhose and lipstick every day (how 1950’s even though this took place in the 1990’s!) She sent out account statements to clients and watched the clients get wealthier as did the stockbrokers through hefty commissions. All the while no one bothered to mentor Violet or encourage her to get her stockbroker’s license. Violet could not relate to the sole female stock broker in the office as she found her aggressive and masculine and so she concluded there was no future for her in finance if she wanted to be feminine and simply be herself.
So why did Violet seize this opportunity to get educated about stocks and options? As she described to me, “After working for seven years in this industry, I feel that I should know how it all works.”
During our first meeting, as I showed her how to construct covered calls on exchange traded funds, she quickly understood the strategy. That was the first thing that inspired me about her. Here was a woman who had a passion for learning a subject matter that was wrapped up in a bad and emotional early career experience. Instead of dismissing the importance of investing and the stock market and running away from it, she ran toward it and wanted to conquer it.
As I was showing Violet a few trades I had made in my personal trading account, I was inspired by her decisiveness. She observed for a few minutes and announced, “You know what you’re doing,” followed by the disclosure that she wasn’t satisfied with her two most recent money managers. Although she didn’t understand the inner workings of the stock market, she thought her money should have “grown” over the last seven years. The very next day I brought her into meet with the CEO of Coastwise, the professional money management firm where I am an investment advisor.
At that meeting Violet continued to inspire me. She had her voluminous account statements completely organized and she knew what she wanted from her money in terms of growth and income. She had a favorable experience with us and asked her husband to come in and meet with us soon thereafter. They made the decision to retain us as partners in their educational and investment journey.
So there you have it…I inspired Violet by offering an education that nobody previously had offered her and she inspired me by exhibiting perseverance, decisiveness, organization, and awareness of who she is and what she wants. I feel honored to have her trust and confidence to manage the assets that will help her and her husband achieve their financial goals.