Why Altus? “Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.”-William Bruce Cameron As a woman-owned and women-operated financial services firm, we anticipated our practice might grow to reflect a more heavily skewed female demographic. We knew 70% of women investors changed their financial advisors within a year of their spouse’s death (Source: McKinsey & Co. analysis). Our industry was dropping the ball with this group. We decided to change that.We began with a simple mission: Provide for our clients what we demand for ourselves.“Finally! Someone gets me!” And isn’t that what we all want? We come by your relief honestly – we do our homework. We need to know who you are: what makes you tick, what’s your preferred learning method, and how can we communicate most effectively with you, for starters. Time is a precious commodity, so we must spend it productively. Are we selective? You bet we are - for both our sakes.More homework: before we invest your money, we also need to understand your relationship to it. There is an emotional connection to almost every decision you make, in your financial as well as your personal life.By identifying underlying emotions and other unseen drivers, we help our clients confidently navigate their financial lives with greater equanimity. More flow. Less struggle. Greater clarity. This is at the heart of behavioral finance. We want to know what has shaped your life, not just your balance sheet. So we ask questions that we hope will spark a story. Stories can be a mother lode of information and insights. Through your stories, you shine a light on needs and values a question can’t always answer. Understanding what money actually means to our clients can minimize bad decisions, lead to more predictable reactions, improve communication, deepen our client relationships, as well as your trust in our guidance. We bring our authentic selves to the table, hoping to encourage our clients to do the same. Our goal is a less guarded, more honest conversation.Our business is built on a foundation of thoughtful client relationships. Somewhere between practicality and intuition, we find that sweet spot, where our clients realize: “You see me.” That sense of connection is “sliding into home plate” for all of us.Nowhere is this more apparent, or important, than with our Guardian ad Litem and special needs clients. While the sheer size of these settlements can drastically alter their future, it can also be overwhelming. And complicated. This is some of the most difficult work we do, heartbreaking, joyous, and always immensely gratifying.These clients and their families constantly reinforce our belief that it is our clients, not their money, that are our most important assets.We strongly believe that as traditional caregivers, this is an area where far more women financial advisors need to be.Today, our clients are split evenly between men and women, and they run the gamut: from Old Guard to immigrants, millennials to octogenarians, pro-bono to the top 2%, diverse individuals, their families and their businesses.And while we may not be ready to make a blanket statement about what men want, we do believe everyone deserves a chance at a homerun.