Planning for the future is a significant portion of the role performed by a financial advisor. Being entrusted with clients’ retirement savings is no small responsibility. But beyond that, advisors must also plan for their own futures, as well as the proper transfer of their books of business in order to ensure their clients are left in good hands. The importance of succession planning and development of the next generation of financial professionals is not lost on L.M. Kohn. Today we’d like to introduce Tom Berry, who’s flourishing career is an excellent example of how we’re developing tomorrow’s advisors today.

A career in the making

Growing up with a father in investment banking, Tom was always surrounded by the world of finance. When he wasn’t playing sports, he was watching his father do business, researching new stocks and analyzing market trends. Naturally, his college years led to a finance degree from the University of Cincinnati in 2015. Armed with his new degree, Tom reached out to L.M. Kohn President Carl Hollister, who identified potential in the recent graduate. Tom accepted Carl’s offer to join L.M. Kohn, and he began work on the RBC Service team helping advisors around the country place trades, open accounts, and figure out the answers to any questions they might have.

Within the first six months of his position, Tom knew that his decision to work in finance and at L.M. Kohn in particular was a good choice. He was surrounded by experienced and supportive colleagues willing to share their knowledge with him. Tom quickly learned valuable problem solving and communication skills and experienced the fulfillment that comes along with helping advisors give their clients’ peace of mind. Before the end of his first year with L.M. Kohn, Tom set his sights on becoming a financial advisor himself.

Carving out a niche

As the next three years passed, Tom continued to excel in his back-office position, taking advantage of every opportunity he had to learn something new. He studied hard and passed every test necessary to gain the required licenses. His chance finally came in January 2020 when a retiring advisor sold Tom his book of business.

The timing proved less than ideal, only a few months before the outbreak of the global Covid pandemic. Nonetheless, Tom buckled down in his new role while continuing to hold his position on the RBC Service team. He met with every one of his new clients in whatever way possible to begin earning their trust and helping them mitigate the pitfalls of the down markets.

The skills Tom acquired over his years at L.M. Kohn have paid off, so much so that his book of business has grown enough over his almost three years as an advisor to allow him to resign his back-office role and focus his full attention on advising clients.

“The financial industry is a hard one to figure out, especially right out of college. I couldn’t have done it without the people in this office,” said Tom. “I have to thank Carl and Larry for believing in me and taking the time out of their schedules to mentor me. It was uncharted territory, as I was the first person coming out of this position to become an advisor. Now it’s almost a strategy for us going forward to build the next generation of advisors.”

Today, Tom continues to provide excellent guidance and service to his clients while searching for new opportunities to grow his book of business.

Contact us today to learn more about how L.M. Kohn helps advisors and clients alike prepare for the future.