Top Tips to Ensure Your Endowment’s Values Align With Your Investment Advisor

Having an endowment which reflects your organization’s values is more important than ever.  But does the wealth advisor you’ve chosen match up to those same standards? In today’s  business world, it’s essential that companies make sure their investments align with their overall  objectives – so take time when selecting a financial partner who appreciates and complies with  ethical practices within your organization. In this blog post, we’ll explore some tips to help you  find a trusted advisor whose values reflect those of your endowments.

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Define your Nonprofit, Endowment, and Foundation Values

It all starts with core values. The foundation of any endeavor requires establishing and adhering  to a set of ideals that guide everything else – this is the key to achieving harmony between  principles, objectives, and outcomes.

The first is the commitment to fund endowment funds responsibly and ethically. Funds should  be managed in such a way that seeks to protect the endowment funds for the long-term goals of  philanthropy and community impact.

Understanding the core values and code of ethics of your nonprofit or foundation will set the  standard for how business is done. Your code of ethics must go beyond basic legal  requirements to ensure that all relationships are based on mutual respect and trust.

Nonprofits should strive to identify meaningful objectives and measurable outcomes that will  generate positive change. Establishing high standards encourages efficient efforts in the  present, as well as towards any long-term goals set by foundations or endowments. By  connecting today’s actions with tomorrow’s aspirations, you can create a clear pathway for  success.

Ultimately, your endowment’s values, as well as your nonprofit or foundation’s, need to be  clearly defined and understood so that you can accurately screen prospective investment  advisors to work with your nonprofit.

Why Being on the Same Page as Your Advisor is Critical

Whether it’s goal setting, developing business strategies, or financial planning, it’s important to  be on the same page as your investment advisor. If you don’t keep up with the plans  communicated to you, it could lead to serious financial mistakes.

By understanding their financial recommendation and intentions, you can get a better idea of  how they plan to help you reach your foundation’s financial goals quicker and easier. Ultimately,  being able to connect with an advisor means more than just getting financial advice; it also  creates a sense of trust and opens up possibilities in terms of financial options available –  something that is critical when planning out your organization’s future financial success.

This Relationship is Crucial to Building Lasting Relationships

People's hands together holding dirt with a plant growing growing; your wealth advisor should create customized investment strategies to help your nonprofit grow.The relationship with your financial advisor is key when it comes to making sure that you have the best and most secure foundation to meet your organization’s financial goals and mission statement.

A CIMA® professional is a type of financial advisor who has a fiduciary duty to ensure that your nonprofit’s investments are taken care of, but also to help make sure that you have a secure relationship to turn to every step of the way. Knowing that you have  an expert in the industry who is looking out for your organization’s best interests can give you  peace of mind and help you pursue your organization’s goals.

While ensuring that your advisor’s values align with your organization’s mission statement and  underlying values is critical, working with a fiduciary advisor goes a step further to ensure your  goals are aligned. An investment advisor acting as a fiduciary has a legal obligation to serve the  best interests of their clients, avoiding potential conflicts of interest while putting your  organization’s best interests first.

Make Sure Your Advisor Understands Your Goals and Risk Parameters

When it comes to your organization’s wealth management needs, communication is a key  component. Make sure you are able to clearly express the goals and financial expectations that  come with investing. This will ensure that your financial advisor has a clear understanding of  exactly what types of strategies they should be utilizing, as well as the level of risk you and your  organization feel comfortable taking on.

An experienced advisor should have the skills and knowledge to create an investment portfolio  tailored to maximize returns while staying within a reasonable level of risk tolerance. Without  this understanding, you may end up making expensive mistakes that put your organization at  financial risk. So make sure you spend the time upfront to communicate your organization’s  goals and risk parameters effectively.

Bottom Line

Choosing an investment advisor is always an important decision, and when it comes to your  nonprofit organization, there is an emphasis on the values of prospective advisors. You want to  ensure that your values are aligned, and that whoever you decide to work with has you and your  organization’s best interests in mind. Ensuring that both of these are aligned, you can begin to  work with your advisor to meet your organization’s goals.

For investment and tax strategies catered to nonprofit organizations, contact the Brown | Miller  financial advisors in Washington, D.C., to see how they can help your organization. Reach out today.


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Author: Christopher W. Brown, CFP®, CIMA®

Christopher W. Brown is the Founder and Managing Principal at Brown | Miller Wealth Management.