Managing Money Against The Odds

I’m a black woman that helps people achieve their dreams for  a living. My story became possible because I had friends, advocates  and mentors who have helped me  along the way. I have a rewarding  career as a financial advisor, with  good pay and hours. It’s a field that  is always looking for talent right  here in Arizona. 

I’m not from Phoenix. I was born  in Wisconsin and moved here when  my husband – the primary bread  winner – was transferred here. I had  worked for Bank One (which later  became Chase) in Wisconsin and  transferred to Phoenix. It didn’t  take me long to adjust to Arizona.  The local food scene did it for me.  Eating out was the highlight of my  weekends. I’ve actually lost weight  during the pandemic because I can’t  do that now. 

I had never thought about be coming a financial advisor. Man aging money has traditionally been  a male- dominated industry, and is  no different in Arizona. Nearly four  percent of the industry’s 87,000 ad visors are Black or Latinx, accord ing to the Certified Planners Board,  the organization that sets standards  for the industry and issues the Certified Financial Planner (CFP®)  certification. 

These numbers aren’t close to reflecting the diversity of clients and  create a false impression that men  typically manage the family finances. They don’t reflect the fact that 80 percent of wives outlive their  husbands, putting them in charge of  all the aspects of managing a house hold – sometimes even overnight. A friend and colleague who had  worked as a banker and was promoted to financial advisor showed  me that this was a career possibility for me. Although hesitant, I listened when she walked me through

the steps I needed to take to get the  appropriate licenses, a typical work  day and the pay and benefits. It was  not a complicated transition to be come a financial advisor after being  a banker for 6 years. I was already  familiar with some of the work, cli ents’ needs and financial products. I  also knew that I had to be bold and  work twice as hard as my colleagues.  I was up to the challenge. 

I’m also heartened by JPMorgan  Chase’s recent commitment of $30  billion over the next five years to  provide economic opportunities in  underserved communities including  building pathways towards a more  diverse and inclusive workforce and  holding itself accountable towards  achieving that goal.  

So, if you are thinking about your  future, I would like to encourage  you to think about a career as a fi nancial advisor. Here are four tips: 

1. Find a mentor or mentors,  who can guide you from who to  meet to what to read. I started my  own mentoring group within my  firm to help new talent grow in their  careers. 

2. Join the right firm. How serious are they about diversity? How  did they address diversity and inclusion prior to 2020? Are senior executives held accountable for racial  discrimination at the company? I  am a founder of J.P. Morgan Wealth  Management’s Black Leadership  Forum created in 2019, which regularly advises senior executives about  employee experience and the needs  of the Black community.

3. Fight for access to clients. Be  bold, work hard and don’t be scared  to show your ambition and ask  for what you want. Don’t wait for  somebody to tap you on the back.  To become a successful advisor, you  need clients, and that’s where your  firm plays a key role. Will you be  given the tools needed to grow?  As soon as I got my license, I  reached out to the district manager  and asked him to put me in a big office with access to many clients. He  took the risk and gave me an opportunity as a junior advisor – and I’ve  been here ever since. 

4. Embrace your extended family. Becoming a financial advisor  is about helping people talk about  something intimate, like money  and their financial needs. It’s not  about selling products. I’ve helped  clients through the most important  moments of their lives: having children, graduations and weddings.  It’s an incredibly rewarding career. Tequilla Swan is a private client ad visor at J.P. Morgan Wealth Management based in Phoenix. She was  named an America’s Top Women  Wealth Advisor by Forbes* in 2021.

For more information about J.P.  Morgan wealth management jobs in  Arizona go to https://careers.jpmor J.P. Morgan  Wealth Management is a business of  JPMorgan Chase & Co., which offers investment products and services  through J.P. Morgan Securities LLC  (JPMS), a registered broker-deal er and investment advisor, member  FINRA and SIPC. Annuities are  made available through Chase Insurance Agency, Inc. (CIA), a licensed  insurance agency, doing business as  Chase Insurance Agency Services, Inc.  in Florida. JPMS, CIA and JPMCB  are affiliated companies under the  common control of JPMorgan Chase  & Co. 

* Data provided by SHOOK Research,  LLC. Data as of 9/30/20. Source: (March, 2021).

America’s Top Women Advisors  ranking was developed by SHOOK  Research and is based on in-person,  virtual and telephone due diligence  meetings to evaluate each advisor  qualitatively, a major component of a  ranking algorithm that includes: client  impact, industry experience, review  of best practices and compliance re cords, firm nominations; and quanti 

tative criteria, including: assets under  management and revenue generated  for their firms. Investment perfor mance is not a criterion because client  objectives and risk tolerances vary,  and advisors rarely have audited per formance reports. Rankings are based  on the opinions of SHOOK Research,  LLC and not indicative of future per formance or representative of any one  client’s experience. Neither Forbes  nor SHOOK Research receive com pensation in exchange for placement  on the ranking. For more information: 

this article sponsored by 

jporgan chase & co. 

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