Client Experience The Client Experience starts with answering some very important questions. It helps form and shape your financial structure. Once established, it is important to monitor the progress, and adjust the portfolio to reflect new investment realities or your changing circumstances over time.In the beginning...What is your situation now? The first task is get a solid understanding of what exists now.How did you come to this point?Who and/or what contributed to your current situation?What are your stated risk tolerances, and are they different from your actions?What are you trying to achieve in the future?Are your goals clear, or do we need to spend time clarifying what could be a number of different objectives happening at different times?Are you trying to make a current situation better?What possible future events are likely to have an impact on your plan? Will the path you're on have a reasonable chance of success?Do you need to make modifications?If so, what are those modifications?Do they reflect you tolerance for the negative volatility that can come from normal or extraordinary market movement?To what degree are asset protection and defensive portfolio tactics important to you?Now that we're underway...After a careful consideration of your complete financial situation, the work begins to determine what modifications should be made. It is entirely possible that portions of what already exists will stay the same. It could be that for what we are trying to accomplish it is the most economical and effective for you. As we analyze and make suggestions, you will be presented a rationale for each suggestion. Then with your consent we make the modifications. We are aware that from person to person there may be a difference in how much information is considered sufficient. Therefore, we tailor the level of details to each person's appetite for information. Just enough to make a good decision, but not too much.Progress ReportsPeriodically reviewing where we are versus where we expected to be at a certain point is an important part of the client experience. It helps suggest modifications to the current portfolio. For example, if we are ahead of our projections, it is possible to ratchet down risk in order to increase the likelihood of achieving ultimate goals. If we are behind, other courses of action can be considered. In reality, the further out you go on projections the less valid they tend to be, but keeping an eye on a rolling five year period can be helpful and realistic in this regard.Investment PlatformsWe are not beholden to any particular platform to implement an investment plan, but rather make that decision after the initial analysis is complete. The preferred platform for managing the assets is fee-based, not commission based. For income from bonds we prefer to own bonds outright (as appropriate to asset size) to help minimize fees and maintain control of maturity dates. Having said all that, in the right circumstances, outside investment managers and other types of investments can be viable approaches.Playing DefenseWe do believe the concept of buy/hold/forget as an investment strategy has lost a lot of credibility over the past decade. Playing defense for capital preservation by raising cash or other measures is part of what we believe in. The nature of risk and market behavior is something no one can claim to have infallible insight. However, we do the best we can with various measures of risk as well as the experience of over 15 years and two Bear markets.CommunicationEach client has a different need for a frequency of contact. We respect that, and try to communicate accordingly. At the very least we will contact you when we feel something important with your accounts or with the markets. Our goal is to reach out once a month at a minimum. And, of course, we always welcome a call from you.