Brian Korienek is a partner and Vice President of Wealth Management at Goldstone Financial Group. Korienek is a fiduciary advisor who holds an Illinois life & health insurance license and has passed his Series 7 and 66 licenses. He has been seen on Fox 32 Chicago and heard on the WLS 890AM radio show, Securing Your Financial Future. Prior to his current role of Vice President of Wealth Management, Korienek worked as a Senior Associate Advisor at Goldstone Financial Group for almost nine years. Before making the move to Goldstone Financial Group, he worked as a Financial Advisor for McAdam Financial Group and as an analyst at the Chicago Board of Trade for an agricultural commodities firm.
Having graduated from Depaul University with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management, Brian Korienek initially found himself in a role focused on numerical analysis related to commodities and pricing. Korienek enjoyed the work, but he knew he would be better served in a position that would allow him to engage with clients directly. He needed to find a firm that would provide him with the resources and freedom to give his clients the best possible service. That led to his joining Goldstone Financial Group. As a Registered Investment Advisor (RIA), Goldstone Financial advisors are fiduciaries and held to a higher ethical standard than non-fiduciary advisors. They have a legal obligation to put their client’s needs first and are expected to take advantage of whatever financial instruments available to help their clients achieve their goals–rather than sticking to a preset list of company offerings. Korienek enjoys helping his clients to secure their financial freedom and to plan for a fruitful retirement through managing risk and preserving wealth.
Brian Korienek also supports many social causes that strongly resonate with him and his family. He is actively involved with charities such as the American Cancer Society, the I Understand Love Heals organization, and the Alzheimer’s Association. In addition to these organizations, Korienek is able to help numerous local and national non-profit organizations through the partnerships that Goldstone Financial Group has developed with a variety of charitable groups. Korienek is an avid traveler who enjoys taking trips with his wife in his spare time. He enjoys playing a good round of golf, whether with friends or clients, and loves to explore the local Chicago restaurant scene.
1. What inspired you to become a financial advisor?
I was first inspired to become a financial advisor when I started working as an analyst at the Chicago Board of Trade for an agricultural commodities firm. It was here that I developed an interest in managing and investing money and saw how it could have such a positive impact on people—both financially and emotionally. From there, my knowledge grew even further when I worked as a Financial Advisor for McAdam Financial Group and then decided to join Goldstone Financial Group as their Senior Associate Advisor. This job combined my passion for numbers with the ability to work closely with clients, helping them realize their financial goals.
2. What sets Goldstone Financial Group apart from other wealth management firms?
As Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs), we are fiduciaries who hold ourselves to higher ethical standards than non-fiduciary advisors. We have a legal obligation to always put our client’s needs first, offering unbiased advice without tremendous pressure or undue influence from outside forces like large Wall Street firms or insurers who may be trying to push certain products over others because of compensation structures. We also take advantage of whatever investments will help our clients achieve their intended goals.
3. What services does Goldstone Financial Group offer its clients?
At Goldstone Financial Group, we strive to provide comprehensive financial planning and wealth management services for our clients. We work with individuals on their retirement, estate planning and investment management needs by creating customized plans tailored to meet their unique circumstances. We also offer risk analysis and portfolio diversification strategies as well as asset allocation advice, tax minimization techniques and access to alternative investments such as real estate, trusts and private equity. Additionally, our team of Certified Financial Planners are available for one-on-one consultations or virtual sessions with all of our clients in order to discuss their individual situation in greater detail.
4. How do you ensure that each client’s plan is designed specifically for them?
Before beginning any financial planning process with a client, I make sure that I have a clear understanding of the person’s background; this helps me gain insight into their current lifestyle including income levels, risk tolerance and long-term goals. From there I can piece together an initial plan—which ranges from simpler cash flow projections all the way up through more complex estate tax analyses—so the client has a complete picture about his/her overall financial health and projections.
5. How do you balance your client’s needs with what is best for them?
I always strive first and foremost to ensure my clients’ needs are met above all else. My number one priority when working with someone is getting them on track financially so they can reach their goals confidently over time through sound decision making, tactical implementation plans, education of options available, management of risk & rewards associated with those options, careful selection of suitable investments & ongoing proactive communication throughout the process. I believe this approach is the key to successful financial planning and wealth management. It allows me to provide my clients with personalized attention, which helps them make decisions that are best suited for their individual needs and goals. In addition, by taking a professional fiduciary role as an advisor at Goldstone Financial Group, I am held to a higher ethical standard than non-fiduciary advisors and have a legal obligation to put our client’s needs first.
6. What tools and resources do you rely on when helping a client secure their financial future?
I always start by sitting down with my clients and getting to know them. This helps me gain insight into their individual goals, risk preferences, timeframes and more. From there I use a variety of different tools and resources to develop customized plans that reflect their individual needs. These include financial models that help predict future values based on certain assumptions, asset allocation strategies created using modern portfolio theory, cash flow forecasting and more. Additionally I provide comprehensive research reports of various investments & services available so they can make informed decisions throughout the planning process. In order to ensure my clients’ financial plans are up-to-date with life changes or market fluctuations, I continuously monitor accounts and review portfolios regularly as well as educate them on current events if needed to adjust accordingly. Finally I leverage the extensive partners Goldstone Financial Group has developed over the years in order for my clients to have access to exclusive products & discounts unavailable anywhere else in the industry. All this combined ensures we are able create an effective plan that will help secure their financial freedom for years to come.
7. What is your approach to financial planning and wealth management?
My approach to financial planning and wealth management focuses on the long-term goals of my clients. I believe in creating a comprehensive plan that takes into account their individual values and objectives, while also providing them with the education they need to make informed decisions. My goal is to help them gain the confidence needed so they can have greater control over their finances now and in the future. To achieve this, I first start by recommending strategies that are tailored for each individual based on their risk tolerance, desired return profile, time frame and more. From there I implement protective measures that reduce potential volatility of investments as well as manage various tax exposures when applicable. As part of the wealth management process, I also provide ongoing support and proactive communication throughout. This helps my clients stay informed while also allowing me to adjust their plans accordingly if needed. By taking a holistic approach to financial planning and wealth management, I can ensure my clients have a clear roadmap that will help guide them towards achieving financial freedom over time.
8. How do you go about selecting investments for your clients?
When selecting investments for my clients I always start by evaluating their individual objectives & risk tolerance. From there I put together an asset allocation strategy tailored to each of them using Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT). MPT is a framework used in finance that encourages diversification across various assets with the goal of reducing downside risk while also maximizing potential returns. Once the asset allocation is determined, I use a systematic approach to identify investments that meet the criteria for each portfolio and have a proven track record of performance. From there I provide in-depth research reports on each investment and give my clients an opportunity to review the information before making any decisions. With this process I can ensure my clients are getting access to appropriate investments that live up to their expectations based on their individual needs and goals.
9. What book would you recommend for individual investors?
I would recommend “The Intelligent Investor” by Benjamin Graham. It is considered to be the bible of investing and has stood the test of time. The book covers important topics such as portfolio management, risk tolerance, value investing and more. I think it is a great resource for individual investors who are looking to become better educated on these topics. The book also has an easy to understand writing style which makes it accessible for investors of all levels. All in all, “The Intelligent Investor” is an essential read for anyone serious about investing and I highly recommend it.
10. Do you have a favorite quote that you live by?
My favorite quote is “The greatest investment you can make is in yourself.” I think it is important to invest in yourself by furthering your education, networking with people and taking risks. These things help us grow as individuals and give us the self-confidence to take on new challenges. This quote serves as a reminder that investing in ourselves can lead to great rewards both personally and professionally.