I constantly ask myself why I do what I do? What is the purpose of building my company? Keeping your unique answer top of mind will help keep you motivated, especially when things are tough.
Levi is Co-Founder and Financial Planner of Millennial Wealth, a Fee-Only financial planning and investment management firm in Seattle, WA helping young professionals, and technology industry employees plan for their future.
He started his career at one of the largest wealth management firms in the country. He worked on a team of advisors managing roughly half a billion in assets. Having primarily worked with pre-retirees and retirees, he wanted to bring financial planning and wealth management to his generation, where he believed the greatest impact could be made. By planning and investing early, younger individuals and families have time on their side to make the most of their financial decisions.
Levi grew up in Eastern, Washington, and has lived in Seattle since 2014. He’s a member of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde and proud of his Native American heritage. In his free time he enjoys playing golf, basketball, video games, and watching the latest bingeable Netflix shows with his girlfriend.
Where did the idea for Millennial Wealth came from?
The idea for Millennial Wealth sprung out of a conversation I had with my now partner Chad Rixse. I had begun writing a personal finance blog geared towards Millennials, and Chad had read some of my posts. We had gotten together for a beer and pizza to catch up with each other, as we had met a few years back at a Rotaract club in Seattle. The idea evolved from the personal finance blog to offering full service financial planning and investment management for Millennials.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I typically wake up between 5:30 and 6 am, make a pot of coffee, and go through emails in the morning while I’m waiting for my brain and body to fully wake up. After a cup of coffee and finishing emails, I’ll get ready for the day. I primarily focus on creative marketing work in the mornings when I feel I am most productive, and try to set meetings for the afternoon. I time block as much of my day as possible in order to stick to it. I’ll hit the gym around 1-1:30 pm, it’s a definite stress reliever for me on a day to day basis. I also like to cook, so if I don’t have any meetings past 5, I’ll take time to cook for my girlfriend and I for dinner.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I bring ideas to life by trying to educate myself as much as possible. I truly believe in preparation. Confidence comes from understanding and preparation, and in financial planning it’s extremely important to ensure you’re always giving the best advice possible to your clients. Secondly, acting on an idea is key. Many people have ideas and talk about them, but actually taking action is what will bring them to life.
What’s one trend that excites you?
A trend that excites me is the use of technology to increase efficiency in all aspects of life not just business. The quality of life across the world is getting better and better as technology allows us to focus on things we enjoy, offers unlimited access to information and education, and provides platforms to have a voice.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive?
One habit of mine that makes me more productive as an entrepreneur is my drive to continually be better. I can’t be complacent, and I’m always wanting to learn and progress in business and as a person.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would advise my younger self to explore more, and don’t be afraid to fail. I let the fear of failure drive me to quit sports, specifically basketball, a game I had loved all my life up until high school. I put too much pressure on myself that it became unbearable. Have fun, and understand that failure is oftentimes the greatest teacher.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
The Seattle Seahawks should have 3 super bowl titles.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I constantly ask myself why I do what I do? What is the purpose of building my company? Of course it’s to help people financially, and plan for their future, but what’s the deeper motivating factor that gets me excited every morning? Keeping your unique answer top of mind will help keep you motivated, especially when things are tough.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Digital marketing and content creation has helped grow my business. Prior to launching Millennial Wealth, my former company didn’t allow much social media presence or for advisors to speak in their own voices. An advantage we have as a small Independent firm, is the ability to showcase our voice and utilize social media platforms, where Millennials are familiar with consuming content.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
One failure I’ve had as an entrepreneur was not consulting with more people at the beginning of launching our firm. Looking back, I should have booked my calendar with as many people in the business running their own independent financial planning firms as possible to pick their brains. There’s no downside and a ton of upside. I’ve overcome that initial lack of insight by constantly reading industry best practices and new ideas.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
The independent financial planning industry could use a SEO, website building, digital marketing expert to help a lot of business owners. We have no background in this stuff, and unless you enjoy it, you’ve probably hired someone for each of these areas. If one individual or company could take care of it all, since there are particular synergies, I think that’d be a great value add and business idea.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
The best $100 I recently spent was on a seeing the recent Avengers movie with my girlfriend on a Sunday night . I especially enjoy relaxing evenings with her to help take my mind off of business, which I certainly think there needs to be a balance.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I use Hootsuite for all my social media marketing. You can plan into the future and schedule posts across various platforms all from one dashboard. This saves a tremendous amount of time. If you had to go platform by platform posting the most recent blog post, it would be a major headache.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
I’m very motivated by sports, and the top athletes in the world. I think they provide a public view into how hard you have to work in order to be the best at something. “Driven From Within” by Mark Vancil, about Michael Jordan remains one of my favorite books and a great motivating tool. Jordan’s desire to be great and the best to ever play the game is fascinating and inspiring.
What is your favorite quote?
“To hell with circumstances; I create opportunities.” – Bruce Lee
I think regardless of someones circumstances, we all have amazing opportunity in this country to bring our ideas to life. A desire, passion, and drive to succeed inevitably will result in success however you define it.
- Keep your “why” top of mind, when things get tough it’ll help you stay motivated and pushing forward.
- Don’t let the fear of failure inhibit you from taking action on an idea. It’s better to try, than to not try at all.
- Consult with industry experts. People who have been there done that can provide influential and positive insight into running your own business or progressing your idea forward.
- Don’t ever stop learning, keep an open mind and strive to improve in your business, but also in your personal life.
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Carlyn runs the day-to-day publishing operation here at ideamensch and interacts with our awesome customers and entrepreneurs. She is likely editing this with a cat on her lap.