By Tom Bradley

Lately I’ve been part of too many conversations that go like this.

What brings you to Steadyhand? “I haven’t been happy with my existing advisor. The returns have been lousy and the service has fallen off to the point where I never hear from him.”

Do you know how you’ve done? Does he provide that info? “Well, I was up last year. That was nice. But no, I guess I really don’t know how my account has done.”

So are you going to make a move? “I know I should, but I feel some loyalty to my broker. I’ve been with him for 13 years and we know each other really well. He’s a nice guy.”

But you said he hasn’t been meeting your needs. “Yah, I know. I should do something.”

This conversation drives me to distraction, not just because I want these investors to join us at Steadyhand (I do), but because I can’t stand seeing such a misalignment of loyalty.

Investors should be loyal. Intensely loyal. But it should be directed to their financial plan, and the philosophy and process behind it.

Investing your hard earned money is too important to let misguided loyalties persist. It’s your money. It’s your future. It will help determine the quality of your retirement. If you’re not happy with your current situation, and don’t have faith in the person you’re dealing with, it’s time to do the research, interview some alternatives, make a decision and then ... make that awkward call.