Retirement Plans:Final Episode 4-Be a Better Steward

Episode IV: Act Now: Adjust if needed; Enhance for Excellent Financial Fitness

What’s The Next, Best Right Step?

So this is something that my dad used to say.  (The whole gist is) “There is no such thing as THE RIGHT answer.”  The answer is different for everyone-especially when it comes to retirement plans.  But, there is a next, best, right step.  So, what is the next step that leads the plan to improvement?

First, if you couldn’t agree with each point in this article saying that you have or are in process of or have recently completed my steps outlined in each episode, then you may have plan gaps.  If you aren’t sure, contact me and I’ll send you a Financial Fitness Stewardship checklist (or keep reading for a way to get it now).

If you want to close that gap, then do a full comprehensive review of your plan…but again-don’t do it alone.  If you want to dictate how much risk you are taking, then go through a complete Financial Fitness Fiduciary Evaluation so that you can uncover the plan gaps and build a strategy to implement what you want and need to enhance.

By the way, if you sign the 5500, participate in the decision making, are the business owner, or help employees through this process-then by law you are a fiduciary.  If you haven’t gone through a review process, it is really imperative that you do, so that you know where you stand and what needs improvement.  Doing it on your own is much better than answering to a Department of Labor Audit.

In Summary

By not using a retirement plan, you could be losing money.  You aren’t deferring income away from your current business to fund your future business (aka retirement).   You may not be hiring and retaining the best employees, because your competitors may be using a good retirement plan as a benefit.  If you aren’t building your plan in a manner that the above items are clear, then you also may also be risking your stakeholders by not protecting your business, employees and staff.  Any way you look at it, your plan is an important factor.  Your plan needs to be reviewed and it needs to be built properly.  Be a better steward. That really is the (one of the) motivation behind all of the recent regulatory changes.

Remember the statement from Episode I….”retirement plans help you “make” money in two ways”…. the first is that it helps the company and employees with a proper deferral strategy to save for retirement.  Replacing your paycheck is one of the most daunting tasks we have for retirement. In addition, as a company stakeholder it also helps you “make” money because as an employee benefit, when properly designed, it can help you retain your employees. This in and of itself saves you a lot of time and money in lowering your turnover.  Do all this with a little effort and focus, and you can pursue becoming a Financially Fit company with employees pursuing Financial Fitness. Now what’s the impact this movement can have on your community and business? Being known as a great steward of your resources and benefits to your employees! Wow. That’s a headline that would be enhancing, isn’t it?

Contact me if you want to learn more about this process or have any questions on any of the episodes as it relates to your company and plan.

Did you enjoy this series? If so, the complete 4 Episode eBook is now available and also includes a Complimentary Stewardship Checklist.  Get your copy now by clicking here.



This information was developed as a general guide to educate plan sponsors, but is not intended as authoritative guidance or tax or legal advice. Each plan has unique requirements, and you should consult your attorney or tax advisor for guidance on your specific situation. In no way does advisor assure that, by using the information provided, plan sponsor will be in compliance with ERISA regulations

Securities offered through LPL Financial. Member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory Services offered through HighPoint Advisor Group, LLC, a registered investment advisor.  HighPoint Advisor Group, LLC and OnPath Financial are separate entities from LPL Financial.

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