At the end of January, a few members of our team got together in Port Moody, BC (thanks for the hospitality, Kathryn!) and spent several days working with Pam Schmidt, our facilitator, to really dig into our Mission, Vision, Values, and Purpose.
Since we live in an acronym-heavy world, we’ve been calling these our “MVVP” and realized: yes, they are our most valuable players.
You may have experienced companies that write these things up on the wall, that look pretty and sound nice, but are entirely meaningless in the work that is done there every day. We’re working pretty hard to ensure that is not the case.
We think that these Most Valuable Players are so important that, since the retreat, we’ve been holding them up against every one of our processes, our communications, and our systems, and asking:
How is at least one of the MVVPs showing up here?
As we like to annoyingly quote Martha Beck:
The way we do anything is the way we do everything
Each action we take, internally on our team, and externally with our clients and all the professionals with whom we collaborate, is a reflection of who we are, what is important to us, and what we are trying to achieve with Spring Plans.
After a full day with Pam, writing furiously on multi-coloured sticky notes of many sizes, fueled with copious cups of tea, British chocolate¹, carbonated beverages, and some baked goods from Kathryn’s mom, we came up with these. We hope you like them as much as we do.
We have a lot of purpose but making it one sentence? That’s not easy. Alleviating financial stress. Envisioning possibilities. Creating intentional lives. Nurturing confidence. Clarity. Here’s how we landed:
To help you envision what is possible and create an intentional life by fostering financial confidence.
“Mission” has always been kind of a weird word for Julia, specifically. It didn’t feel quite comfortable. But Pam took us through what it really means and our description came pretty easily:
To treat you as the unique person you are by actively listening, understanding what is important to you, and working together to create your life, well spent.
We have so much vision. Our ideas about what we want to do in the future are extensive. But they all boil down to one thing:
To revolutionize the profession and continuously raise the standard of financial planning, improving the lives of all Canadians.
Small dreams can hang out elsewhere.
We spent a lot of time here. We are driven by our values, and the plans we create are driven by the values of the people we create them for. Values matter a lot. Here are ours:
Community: We are a supportive community of valuable professionals across the spectrum of financial planning disciplines. We share learnings, losses, wins, and opportunities. We advocate for ourselves, our teammates, and our clients. We connect deeply, laugh a lot, celebrate each other, and create outcomes that would be difficult to attain on our own.
Creativity: We draw on our collective expertise and foster curiosity to find novel, elegant solutions to complex problems. We bring our best selves and ideas together, and innovate the sh*t² out of things.
Leadership: We are all leaders, and believe in taking responsibility for our own purpose, growth, and path. We are all mentors; supporting, encouraging, and celebrating the valuable contributions of others. We are revolutionaries, advocating for and holding ourselves to a new standard of financial planning. We are open, creative, humble, and – damn it – we’re funny, too.
Purpose: We have a clear vision of what we want for our company, ourselves, our clients, our professions, and all Canadians. Our vision is worth the time, effort, and resources it will take to pursue it, and we take ownership of what we need to do to create the outcomes we desire.
Integrity: We admit our mistakes and are generous in giving and receiving feedback. We will be open and honest – even when no one is watching. We understand our limitations, and are transparent about what they are. We won’t try to make things fit that don’t fit, and we will not say one thing and do another.
We believe that sharing goals helps them become reality, and that when people know where you’re going, why, and how you plan to get there, they are interested in encouraging you forward.
We also know that you share your most intimate plans, hopes, and fears with us, every day. Thanks for letting us return the favour.
¹ It’s just better
² We did, indeed, leave the curse word in on purpose. But bleeped it for sensitive eyes.