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Why I Became a Financial Advisor

Why I Became a Financial Advisor

March 21, 2017

When you were young, you likely thought about what you wanted to be when you grew up. Some people wanted to be a firefighter or an Olympic athlete, while others imagined saving the world of becoming a famous movie star.

Growing up, I didn’t know that I would become a financial advisor. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my career. But I did know that I had a passion for helping people, I loved the idea of educating others, and I wanted to do something where I felt I was making a difference in the world.

Finding My Career Path

After graduating from Hope College, teaching seemed like the best career path for me, based on my interests and passion. I was a teacher for nearly five years. While I loved helping and teaching others, I discovered my true passion was providing financial education.

While there were plenty of math and history classes, there didn’t seem to be any classes on how to manage your money or choose investments. When everyone faces a unique financial situation, you can’t bottle up generic advice and hand it out to your students. This led me to discover the world of financial services. I realized that, by becoming a financial advisor, I could combine my passion for teaching with my interest in finance to make a positive impact on people’s lives. In 2002, I became an advisor and started working in wealth management.

Building My Knowledge Base

There is so much to learn in the world of finance and wealth management. While it’s handy to be a Jack of all trades, I wanted to hone my knowledge and dive deeper into certain areas. One area in particular that interested me was retirement plan consulting for businesses.

I believe that offering a retirement plan to their employees is one of the greatest things a business can do to help their employees prepare for retirement. But implementing and managing a plan can be timely, expensive, and overwhelming. In order to better serve business owners and companies, I attained the Accredited Investment Fiduciary® certification, which signifies advanced knowledge of fiduciary responsibility and the ability to implement policies and procedures that meet a defined standard of care.

I also attained the Chartered Federal Employee Benefit Consultant designation. In 2014, I joined DeLong & Brower, P. C. to put my specialization and knowledge to use and work with the team to help our Michigan community members. Regarding our team, together everyone achieves more and we feel a team must be part of every financial plan.  The tax professional, insurance expert, financial advisor, and an estate planning attorney together is truly awesome.

My Career Today

I’ve been in this industry for more than 15 years and can’t imagine having any other career. It can be difficult working on building our firm while also dedicating time to clients, and it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day routines. But being disciplined to work on the business to continually improve is key.

As a husband of 17 years and a father of three wonderful kids, my family drives me to work hard every day. There are so many other families out there that I believe can benefit from my help. All of the hard work is worth it when I know that I have the opportunity to make a difference. I hope that, through our services, I can help my clients feel more confident in their future and achieve financial organization.

The Next Step

Whether you’re a business owner requiring assistance with your company 401(k) or a family who wants to take control of their financial future, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’m happy to offer you a complimentary, no-pressure consultation where we can discuss your questions, your goals, and whether we may be a good fit for one another. Whether you have one or ten questions, ask me them by emailing or calling 616-396-0500.

About Joel

Joel Johnson, AIF® is an Investment Advisor Representative with DeLong & Brower, P. C., a Holland, Michigan accounting, retirement consulting, insurance, and financial services firm. He specializes in providing comprehensive wealth management and retirement plan consulting for individuals, families, retirees, and business owners. Along with more than 15 years of industry experience, Joel is an Accredited Investment Fiduciary® and a Chartered Federal Employee Benefit Consultant. To learn more, visit