Tag Archives: #IRISMediaWorks

Episode 48 – Achieve Balance by Firing Yourself – With Julia Carlson

Julia Carlson is the founder & president of Financial Freedom Wealth Management Group, which she founded at 23. In this episode of Permission to Succeed, she and Doug Heikkinen discuss how she grew Financial Freedom into a multi-million dollar business, and how a family emergency forced her to let go, trust her team, and learn how to create boundaries to achieve work/life balance.  They also discuss:

  • The importance of investing in yourself to drive personal and professional growth
  • How creating a niche target audience can allow your firm to really focus and develop deep expertise
  • How Financial Freedom has reinvented their digital client journey in the COVID era to continue to bring in new clients
  • The importance of having confidence & listening to your inner compass to find the next right step for you

Disclosure: Securities and Advisory Services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor. Member FINRA & SIPC.

Financial Freedom Wealth Management Group, LLC is a member of the SmartVestor program. The SmartVestor program is a directory of investment professionals. Neither Dave Ramsey nor SmartVestor are affiliates of Financial Freedom Wealth Management Group or LPL.

Resources: Financial Freedom Wealth Management Group

Episode 47 – Turn Your Failures Into Strengths with Brandon Hernandez

Food safety and the food supply chain are things we are all thinking about more often. Brandon Hernandez is a co-founder of Whole Brain Consulting and has decades of experience in the food supply chain services industry.

In this episode of Permission to Succeed, Doug Heikkinen and Brandon discuss how people work to keep the food supply chain safe, other trends within his industry, how he helps others evaluate and invest in opportunities, and advice that Brandon has for entrepreneurs.

  • How demand skewed the food supply chain at the beginning of COVID-19, and how businesses were forced to respond
  • How current space allocation on trucks to meet demand is going to affect small brands going forward
  • How the caloric density of nutritional food is going to drive food development as the population continues to increase
  • How Whole Brain Consulting works with private equity firms to evaluate potential investment opportunities in this industry
  • Brandon’s tips for moving past a “plateau phase” to grow a sustainable, thriving business

Resources: Whole Brain Consulting | Whole Brain Twitter Feed

Episode 46 – Stay Humble & Play Your Role – with Derek Bruton

As a former collegiate & professional basketball player, Derek Bruton, the new CEO of Kingswood Holdings, U.S., understands that everyone on a team plays a specific role to drive its success. The challenge is to deeply understand your role and have the humility to play it to the best of your ability. 

In this episode of Permission to Succeed, Doug Heikkinen and Derek also discuss working from home, actions he thinks financial advisors should be taking, and how to put lessons learned into action in the time of COVID-19.

About Derek Bruton:

Derek Bruton is CEO of Kingswood Holdings U.S. He brings a unique combination of M&A, RIA, RIA custodian, and B/D experience to the financial advisors he serves at Kingswood. 

A proven strategic and sales leader in the financial services industry for 30 years, Bruton has served in executive positions with leading RIA custodians such as Charles Schwab, TD Ameritrade, and LPL Financial.  He has led the recruiting of over 5,000 financial advisors in his career, and has assisted with the strategy and growth of over 15,000 advisor businesses. 

Bruton graduated from Stanford University, and has completed executive business management course work at Harvard University.  He lives in San Diego, CA with his wife, Helen, and their two girls.  Bruton played collegiate basketball for Stanford, and professional basketball in Japan.  He has FINRA licenses 7, 8, 24, 63, and 65.


RESOURCES: Kingswood Group

Episode 45 – Take Your Ego Out of Your Business – with Erin Botsford

This episode of Permission to Succeed features Doug Heikkinen and Erin Botsford, Creator of the Elite Advisor Success System™, a training platform for financial advisors and their assistants.  A Barron’s Top 100 Advisor, Erin was in the financial services business for over 30 years and recently executed a successful exit. Today Erin invites advisors to model her success by learning what works when it comes to marketing for new business, closing on the first appointment, hiring and training staff, and building a firm that runs without the day to day involvement of the advisor.  Erin teaches advisors how to focus on being the leader and creative force within their company, how to set themselves up for exponential growth, and when the advisor is ready, a successful exit.

In this podcast, you will hear:

  • Erin’s career journey from being a “recipe for disaster” in her first job as a stockbroker,  to starting her own firm and becoming a Barron’s Top 100 Producer, to setting her firm up for a successful sale, to how she’s now giving back.
  • Why it is important to take your ego out of your business and make sure your firm can run without you
  • How you can prepare in advance to make your firm attractive to buyers
  • How to reassure your clients in today’s environment by making yourself available

Click here to download a free copy of Erin’s book, Seven Figure Firm: How to Build a Financial Services Business that Grows Itself.

Click here to learn more about Erin’s training program for financial advisors. Mention you heard her on IRIS.xyz to receive a special discount.

RESOURCES:  Erin Botsford

Episode 44 – Connect With Your Clients Through Storytelling – with Stacy Havener

Recorded live at IMPACT® 2019, this episode of Permission to Succeed features Doug Heikkinen and Stacy Havener, Founder & CEO of Havener Capital Partners, discussing the current environment and how, despite having the odds stacked against them on an uneven playing field, smaller asset managers can set themselves apart by telling their story.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • Why Havener Capital chooses to work with underdogs
  • Why active management tends to be underappreciated until there’s volatility
  • How smaller, active asset managers can compete and win against the behemoths 
  • How soccer led to Stacy’s career in the financial services industry, and the advice she has for others who might be interested in it.



IRIS Media Works recorded 16 Permission to Succeed podcasts from our pop-up podcast “studio” in the Discovery Data booth at IMPACT 2019. Fueled by coffee and the conference energy swirling around us, we had a great time talking to leaders from across the financial services industry. Thank you to Discovery Data and to our guests for participating in this grand experiment. We hope you enjoy and learn from these conversations as much as we did.

RESOURCES: Havener Capital Partners | Havener Capital Partners LinkedIn | Discovery Data

Episode 43 – Everyone Should Write and Publish Their Book – with J.T. McCormick

Everyone has a story. In today’s new reality, inspirational stories about how individuals work to overcome adversity are especially important. In this episode of Permission to Succeed, Doug Heikkinen talks with JT McCormick, President & CEO of Scribe Media about his journey, the importance of focusing on the positive and finding the lessons that make you a better person, and how he came to believe that everyone has a story worth telling – even you.

About JT McCormick

Abuse, discrimination, poverty, and neglect were once the major themes of JT McCormick’s childhood. As an adult, JT drew on those experiences to write the next chapter of his life—one of success.

JeVon Thomas McCormick was raised in the slums of Dayton, Ohio by his father, a black pimp and drug dealer, and a white orphaned mother. Determined not to be a victim of his circumstances, JT received his GED and found his first job cleaning toilets in a San Antonio Restaurant.

From those humble beginnings, JT worked his way up from being the lowest-paid employee at a software company, to the President of the company. During his tenure, he helped grow the business to a multimillion-dollar, 100-plus person company that was repeatedly ranked as one of the best places to work in all of Texas.

JT McCormick currently serves as the President and CEO of Scribe Media, a publishing company that helps individuals from a variety of backgrounds write, publish, and market their books. Scribe Media has worked with more than 1600 authors, including members of The Nobel Peace Prize Committee and David Goggins, and was recently ranked the #1 Top Company Culture in America by Entrepreneur Magazine.

JT is passionate about conscious entrepreneurship and creating opportunities for at-risk youth. He has mentored young men and women in the juvenile justice system, as well as those in lower economic communities. He lives in Austin, Texas, with his wife, Megan, and their four children Ava, Jaxon, Elle and Jace.

Resources: Scribe | Scribe Book School

Episode 42 – Focus on Your Core Strengths. Outsource the Rest. – with Barrett Ayers

This episode of Permission to Succeed (recorded on March 10, 2020) features Doug Heikkinen and Barrett Ayers, President of Adhesion Wealth, discussing how your P&L benefits when you build a deep understanding of your clients’ needs and goals, and how the current turmoil is actually an opportunity to pause and discuss strategies with your clients.

In this podcast, you will learn about:

  • The importance of focusing on your core strengths and outsourcing the rest of your tasks
  • Things you should consider when evaluating technology stacks for your firm, including putting everything out to RFP and hiring a consultant to make sure you get the solution you need
  • The value of saying no – a lot – so that you can say yes to things that are really important
  • Barrett’s life-long passion for fee-based independent advisors, and why he believes now may be the best time for fee-based advice in history

RESOURCES: Adhesion Wealth

Episode 41 – Empowering Employees through Human Capital Risk Management- with Hugh O’Toole

This episode of Permission to Succeed features Doug Heikkinen and Hugh O’Toole, Chief Executive Officer at Innovu, discussing how Hugh’s dedication to solving ‘the obvious’ has innovated the way companies view and leverage benefits to ensure a better quality of life for their employees.

In this podcast, you will learn about:

  • What is Human Capital Risk Management?
  • The challenge presented by the current siloed approach to benefits management, and how companies are moving toward a holistic approach.
  • The current trend of private money pouring in to figure out how to aggregate the employee benefits data silos and build a complete picture of employees
  • How Hugh’s journey led him to financial services, and how listening gets him unstuck



Episode 40 – Advising the Modern Investor – with Frankie Corrado

This episode of Permission to Succeed features Doug Heikkinen and Frankie Corrado, managing director & principal at Robertson Stephens, discussing how evolving investor needs are driving financial advisors to adapt & consider new approaches to meet those needs. They also chat about how Frankie made the time to hike the Appalachian Trail, and how that experience made him a better advisor.

In this podcast, you will hear:

  • About the shift from investment-focused planning to life-focused planning, and why Frankie & his firm are embracing it
  • How giving your clients an opportunity and a platform to express their deepest desires can lead to more effective planning
  • Strategies for remaining your clients’ trusted advisor, despite the chatter in the media and across the internet
  • Why Frankie thinks persistence is critical to achieving big goals


RESOURCES:  Roberston Stephens | Alliance of Comprehensive Planners

Episode 39 – Can Financial Technology Catch Alexa? – with Doug Fritz

This episode of Permission to Succeed features Doug Heikkinen and Doug Fritz, founder & CEO of F2 Strategy, discussing financial technology and how financial advisors should be thinking about it, evaluating their options, and planning for the future. They also talk about how Doug’s passion for helping people led him to found F2 Strategy, and advice he has for others looking to make the leap and start their own companies.

In this podcast, you will hear:

  • How FinTech is playing catch-up to investor expectations in a world of Alexa and rideshare apps
  • How to know if you have good technology in place
  • The importance of purposefully making and adapting to change to build the muscle memory necessary to do it again and again
  • Key points to consider when evaluating new technology solutions


RESOURCES:  F2 Strategy