My father John (McColl) was a stockbroker. I was one of four boys. For funds, my brothers and I were substitute paper boys, mowed lawns, and collected and recycled newspapers from our neighbors. I preferred to save my earnings rather than spending them. It was a thrill for me to stack my coins, redeposit them into my piggy bank just to count them again.
I always knew that I wanted to work with money. I called my father’s manager and interviewed with his firm, Kidder Peabody without telling him. He was thrilled and we worked together for 7 wonderful years. My father had been a producing manager before he returned to work as a full-time stockbroker. He always told me that the way to run an honest business was to hire honest people. That kept him out of trouble as a manager. Proverbs 21 says, “a good name is worth more than silver and gold”. That’s the verse that described my father.
The investment business has changed a lot. Regulations are crazy in the transactional brokerage world. There is much wasted time and effort in that business and at the end of the day, a client can still wonder, “was the transaction best for me?” Personally, I have never felt clients ever asked that question when transacting business with me. Nevertheless, there was still a conflict of interest.
When we ventured out to create our own firm, we wanted Silvia McColl to build a business around giving unbiased – conflict-free advice. Whether our clients follow our advice or not, we know they will make better decisions with our counsel considered.
Building our own firm has been hard and rewarding work.