How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Topic Author
wholeinone04
Posts: 250
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 12:45 pm
Location: California

How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by wholeinone04 »

I have a very good friend who is currently paying a FA at Wells Fargo .85% a year for 'financial advice' and I don't know how to convince him to take more control of his investments. I took a look at his portfolio for him and he has done a great job saving after about 5 years of working. He has 40k in his 401k, 40k in an IRA and 150k in an after tax account.

But he uses this FA for his after tax account who has him in about 30 different mutual funds with avg. ER's of 1%. So he's paying nearly 2% in fees every year. I also explained to him the huge conflict of interest a lot of these FA's have and I think one of the most obvious examples in his case was the fact that his FA had him contributing 5k/mo to his after tax account(which was under Wells Fargo management) but not even close to maxing out his 401(k) - which doesn't make any sense to me when you're making 150-200k a year. Obviously his FA doesn't make as much if he maxes out 401k and contributes less to mutual fund since he only gets .85% of his WF after tax account.

Anyways, my friend is a very smart guy but finance/investments just doesn't interest him. I showed him that a 1% expense ratio can literally cost him a million dollars over 30-40 years with his current account balance but that didn't seem to sway him.

He told me he would look into a fee only FA but I got the impression that he's going to just keep on doing what he's doing. I know he'll end up fine either way since he doesn't spend much, obviously saves a lot but I just feel bad b/c he's paying so much more than he has to.

What do you think is the best solution for this type of guy? He definitely cares about his investments but he readily admits that he doesn't want to worry about it - he wants to pay someone to take care of it.
User avatar
soaring
Posts: 1441
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2007 9:09 am
Location: North Central Florida

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by soaring »

he readily admits that he doesn't want to worry about it - he wants to pay someone to take care of it.
He gave you his answer. Accept it and get on with your life. I've had this happen with two relatives each with 7 figure investments. I tried, they understood and said no. Then I understood and dropped it.
Desiderata
User avatar
cheese_breath
Posts: 9937
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by cheese_breath »

soaring wrote:
he readily admits that he doesn't want to worry about it - he wants to pay someone to take care of it.
He gave you his answer. Accept it and get on with your life.
+1
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.
Novine
Posts: 1240
Joined: Mon Nov 17, 2008 9:07 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Novine »

You should show him a comparison of what you pay in fees and the impact on your portfolio versus his. Some people don't care or don't get the abstract but if they see that you're getting one up on them, that may help them see the light.
Twins Fan
Posts: 2775
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:02 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Twins Fan »

Leave it be... financial advisers need folks like him. :D

If he is set in his ways and comfortable with the fees he pays, you are likely wasting your breath trying to convert him.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by sscritic »

Have him read this thread.

http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtop ... 0&t=133565

No, I take that back. You should read that thread.

I love deja vu all over again.
investor
Posts: 1010
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 10:50 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by investor »

cheese_breath wrote:
soaring wrote:
he readily admits that he doesn't want to worry about it - he wants to pay someone to take care of it.
He gave you his answer. Accept it and get on with your life.
+1

++1

Don't intermix business with friends, relatives or neighbors.

investor
User avatar
papito23
Posts: 438
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2012 6:54 am
Location: midwest

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by papito23 »

If this person is very important to you, and you don't think this will jeopardize your friendship, I would suggest using lawman3966's illustration from the aforementioned thread (link here). Otherwise, let it be.
A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise. -Aldo Leopold's Golden Rule of Ecology
Fallible
Posts: 7566
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2009 4:44 pm
Contact:

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Fallible »

sscritic wrote:Have him read this thread.

http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtop ... 0&t=133565

No, I take that back. You should read that thread.

I love deja vu all over again.
:D
"Yes, investing is simple. But it is not easy, for it requires discipline, patience, steadfastness, and that most uncommon of all gifts, common sense." ~Jack Bogle
User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 42221
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by nisiprius »

My $0.02

1) In a discussion between adults, it should always be possible to get to the point where you can summarize the other person's point of view in a way that the other person agrees is accurate, and vice versa. That is to say, you have heard him and he has heard you. Once you get that far, you've accomplished something worthwhile.

2) Don't assume that you have failed if the person doesn't say "O, you are right, I will change what I am doing." Changes in opinion are often incremental. You've planted an idea and it may take it years to sprout.

3) If it's just mosquitoes sucking small amounts of blood that your friend can afford to lose, then don't fuss. If it's a scam artist and your friend is in danger of being bled to death, then stronger intervention might be justified.

4) You cannot change someone else's mind unless you are willing to have the risk of having your own mind changed.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.
livesoft
Posts: 73523
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by livesoft »

Take him to lunch often -- at least once a week. And always pay for both of you. Mention each time that you have made money in the market by using a passively-managed low-expense-ratio do-it-yourself approach.
Wiki This signature message sponsored by sscritic: Learn to fish.
User avatar
William4u
Posts: 1401
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:02 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by William4u »

Send him this link....

http://vanguardblog.com/2011/10/28/stop ... f-returns/

It explains that a 2% fee over 40 years will likely wipe out more than 50% of the value of the investments. Does he want to have 50% less money?
User avatar
tetractys
Posts: 4836
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2007 3:30 pm
Location: Along the Salish Sea

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by tetractys »

wholeinone04 wrote:I have a very good friend who is currently paying a FA at Wells Fargo .85% a year for 'financial advice' and I don't know how to convince him to take more control of his investments.
If you don't believe tying your friend to a tree and pouring bourbon down his throat until he gives in won't work; then I think your out of luck. (I remember a few teenage friends of mine philosophizing upon this ground once upon a time.) -- Tet
User avatar
TimeRunner
Posts: 1635
Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2012 9:23 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by TimeRunner »

Repeat after me: "One cannot enlighten the unconscious." :idea:
One cannot enlighten the unconscious.
User avatar
tadamsmar
Posts: 9096
Joined: Mon May 07, 2007 12:33 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by tadamsmar »

"I can explain it to you, but I can't comprehend it for you" - Ed Koch
User avatar
Index Fan
Posts: 2582
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2007 12:13 pm
Location: The great Midwest

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Index Fan »

How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted
You can't.

They have to convert themselves. That doesn't often happen. Don't let it bother you or your life will be unhappy.
"Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis." | -Seneca
User avatar
in_reality
Posts: 4529
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2013 6:13 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by in_reality »

wholeinone04 wrote: But he uses this FA for his after tax account who has him in about 30 different mutual funds with avg. ER's of 1%. So he's paying nearly 2% in fees every year.
I was doing the same.

The different funds help them easily do tactical weighting I believe. Oh this area looks promising let"s allocate a little more there.


wholeinone04 wrote: I also explained to him the huge conflict of interest a lot of these FA's have and I think one of the most obvious examples in his case was the fact that his FA had him contributing 5k/mo to his after tax account(which was under Wells Fargo management) but not even close to maxing out his 401(k) - which doesn't make any sense to me when you're making 150-200k a year. Obviously his FA doesn't make as much if he maxes out 401k and contributes less to mutual fund since he only gets .85% of his WF after tax account.
Yeah you are 100% correct.

Wells Fargo is reputable though. Sorry to say this but looking at the cover of a Boglehead book, I mean you can't be serious right? Taking advice from someone off the internet is really crazy. Who the heck is Rick Ferri? Dicey. Dicey.

Plus, I can take any number of apps. that will find me a better performing fund. Better performing today but what about tomorrow and how much did you pay in taxes to switch.

I would give up converting him. I would continue to familiarize him with Boglehead philosophy. I would tell him what you are doing and ask his opinion of it. I would share an article with him and ask him what he thinks. When he hears himself saying "yeah you know what those Bogleheads do seem to have the best strategy" then he might consider it.

He doesn't know what you and I and the people here know. He knows his advisor is going to do what his advisor says he will. Wells Fargo is very trustworthy and reliable.

There is a solid drumbeat of indexing merits and I think you just have to use that to drown out the noise coming from his advisor. And I would listen to him. What does he think? What does he really think? Ask him and keep asking him. Look over some information together and listen to his conclusion. And I'd focus it like him helping you do the right thing. Maybe he is right. Ask him to convince you.

Besides, how is he going to get his taxes done? 8-)
Topic Author
wholeinone04
Posts: 250
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 12:45 pm
Location: California

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by wholeinone04 »

Lol'ing at some of the responses. Trust me, I'm not going to lose sleep over this or anyone else for that matter but I think it's pretty selfish to only think of yourself when you know you can help someone. If you have information that can really help someone(and you know in 30 years your friend will probably regret not listening to you) don't you feel some obligation/responsibility to at least do a really good job of convincing them?

The reason why I posed my question was to learn how I can convert him or at least try. Obviously what I'm doing/did isn't working so I need to try something else - not sure giving up is really a solution. That's called giving up.
User avatar
jmndu99
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:18 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by jmndu99 »

I once was told "If you think someone needs help, you are the one who really needs help", meaning leave it alone.

In your case "If you think someone needs to be converted, you are the one who really needs to be converted"
Twins Fan
Posts: 2775
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:02 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Twins Fan »

wholeinone04 wrote:Lol'ing at some of the responses. Trust me, I'm not going to lose sleep over this or anyone else for that matter but I think it's pretty selfish to only think of yourself when you know you can help someone. If you have information that can really help someone(and you know in 30 years your friend will probably regret not listening to you) don't you feel some obligation/responsibility to at least do a really good job of convincing them?

The reason why I posed my question was to learn how I can convert him or at least try. Obviously what I'm doing/did isn't working so I need to try something else - not sure giving up is really a solution. That's called giving up.
As with an alcoholic or drug addict, they will seek help when and if they want help. Otherwise, you're just pushing them away.

Good luck thinking you "need" to do this.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by sscritic »

Twins Fan wrote: As with an alcoholic or drug addict, they will seek help when and if they want help. Otherwise, you're just pushing them away.
However, there are groups like Al-Anon to help the family and friends of alcoholics. What the OP needs is a group that helps people work through the issues of having friends and family pay 1% for investing advice.
Twins Fan
Posts: 2775
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:02 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Twins Fan »

We should start one... Bogle-Anon. :D
Nowizard
Posts: 3058
Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:33 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Nowizard »

There are things other than money. If he has plenty and doesn't want to fool with investments, just let it go. There are folks here who would not buy a luxury car regardless of how much money they had and others who find such a car a wonderful source of satisfaction. Money is not an end in and of itself, though it sure is nice to have some! :) If accumulation is the only goal, who would give to charity, even the "charity" of the Wells Fargo advisor?

Tim
J295
Posts: 2722
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:40 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by J295 »

You are a good friend in trying too help him.

Money is a poor master and a good servant. It seems your friend has chosen, at least for now, to have money serve him in the manner you have described (which doesn't make financial sense to you). He is apparently making an intentional choice, which is his to make.

Enjoy your friendship and the diversity in your views on this topic. Perhaps at another time he may transition to the BH way (when the student is ready the teacher will appear).

Best regards.
User avatar
Tortoise
Posts: 367
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 3:24 am
Location: San Jose

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Tortoise »

William4u wrote:Send him this link....

http://vanguardblog.com/2011/10/28/stop ... f-returns/

It explains that a 2% fee over 40 years will likely wipe out more than 50% of the value of the investments. Does he want to have 50% less money?
Between the link, above, and perhaps buying and highlighting a copy of "The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing," there's not a whole lot else you can do.
"Always do right. This will gratify some people, and astonish the rest." --Mark Twain
DSInvestor
Posts: 11383
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 11:42 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by DSInvestor »

Redirect your energy to helping folks who come to bogleheads who need help making the switch. It's much more fun and educational too. You may find your friend posting here in 12-18 months after he's had some time to digest.
Wiki
JS in SC
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Dec 24, 2012 10:46 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by JS in SC »

This reminds me of when I was a young man working my way through college working at McDonald's. I was sent to the Basic Operation Course in Atlanta to train for a week to become a better assistant manager. The course director asked who thought they were good at motivating their crew. I threw my hand up in the air because I thought I was a pretty darn good assistant manager. He called me to the front of the room in front of the class, folded his arms across his chest, put on his best "I hate the world" look on his face and said, "Motivate me". To which I replied, "You can only motivate people who want to be motivated." He said, "Exactly right". That has been the better part of forty years ago and I still remember the lesson well.

Your friend doesn't want to be motivated. He has made that clear. Tell him you're there for him if he ever changes his mind. And move on...
Calm Man
Posts: 2917
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:35 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Calm Man »

True story: A guy knocked on my door yesterday. He looked safe so I opened the door. He was the pastor from the Church of XX. I said please give me your talk in a minute or two. He did. I said thank you and I'll come to the address you give should I be interested. Your friend listened and now you are done. Why must you proselytize him?
User avatar
cfs
Posts: 4154
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:22 am
Location: ~ Mi Propio Camino ~

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by cfs »

Avoid

Avoid

Avoid
~ Member of the Active Retired Force since 2014 ~
staythecourse
Posts: 6993
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2011 9:40 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by staythecourse »

Who cares. The guy does not want to change his mind so let him be.

With investing I have learned for some folks executing efficient finances is NOT the goal. The goal is just to make sure they do it and they actually prefer NOT to be responsible for success or failure. If they fail with the FA then "oh well it wasn't my fault I was duped it was his fault" approach. Many folks just don't have the self confidence in their abilities to handle big picture stuff like finances.

Good luck.
"The stock market [fluctuation], therefore, is noise. A giant distraction from the business of investing.” | -Jack Bogle
User avatar
GerryL
Posts: 2910
Joined: Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:40 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by GerryL »

You gave him information. He gave you his answer. Unless he brings it up, it's time to drop it. Friends don't try to fix friends.
katnok
Posts: 171
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 8:36 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by katnok »

I think it is quite difficult for uninitiated individuals to see the benefits of Bogleheads philosophy when you first talk to them about it.

While I am not a complete Boglehead yet, I am getting closer, and it has taken well over a couple of years to achieve this change. It was by pure chance that I stumbled upon this forum. At first it was all like Greek and Latin to me. For the first few months, I visited this forum once every couple of weeks or so. But, as I started to understand what was being discussed, and how helpful those discussions were, my interest has really grown and now I visit this forum pretty much daily.

Just like the OP, I have told many of my good friends and others about this site, but except for one or two, nobody has even looked at it. So, I dont tell anyone anymore unless they ask.

Also, I am proud to say that I have played a role (not sure how big it is) in having our HR change our 403b custodian and reduce ERs by at least 80%. This was only possible because of what I have learned here. So, thanks to all of you.
User avatar
schuyler74
Posts: 234
Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:56 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by schuyler74 »

I disagree with most of the previous posters.

There are a large number of people on this site who feel strongly against "proselytizing" others to the Boglehead way. To we who care about the well-being of our friends, you should know that such an attitude comes off as selfish and uncaring.

Say you have a friend who smokes a pack a day and you feel it is unhealthy to smoke, so you tell him so and provide evidence. The friend listens and says, "I hear you but I'm going to continue to smoke." Should you give up? That's it? You told him it was unhealthy and provided evidence one time, but the friend rejected it and you're done?
Many people in this forum wrote:Well, the guy was way out on the ledge and said he was gonna jump. I told him not to, but he didn't get off the ledge. So I left; screw him. On my way out of the building, I suggested to the janitor he get his mop ready, though. So, that makes two people I helped today. Go me!
Now, it may be that this attitude has been refined over a period of time where your experience has shown you that it's often fruitless to try and convince anyone to change. Maybe, but that doesn't change how it comes across to those of us who want to help our friends. The OP does want to help his friend and is asking for suggestions on how to do it. Nisiprius' first three bullets are excellent advice to the OP:
Nisiprius wrote:1) In a discussion between adults, it should always be possible to get to the point where you can summarize the other person's point of view in a way that the other person agrees is accurate, and vice versa. That is to say, you have heard him and he has heard you. Once you get that far, you've accomplished something worthwhile.

2) Don't assume that you have failed if the person doesn't say "O, you are right, I will change what I am doing." Changes in opinion are often incremental. You've planted an idea and it may take it years to sprout.

3) If it's just mosquitoes sucking small amounts of blood that your friend can afford to lose, then don't fuss. If it's a scam artist and your friend is in danger of being bled to death, then stronger intervention might be justified.
Or am I just being young & naive? :?
User avatar
jmndu99
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:18 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by jmndu99 »

I am really surprised this thread has been allowed to go on this long without being locked
User avatar
schuyler74
Posts: 234
Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:56 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by schuyler74 »

Why would it be locked? It satisfies all the usual criteria: specific, actionable, etc. The OP asked for suggestions on how to persuade his friend that the Boglehead way is better than paying an advisor.

It's ironic that those who feel most strongly against doing this are the ones who I've seen post so often about the fact that you shouldn't do it. With so much evidence of these sorts of responses, one could accurately say that they are proselytizers of anti-proselytizing.

And why do people so often pipe in with a post about how shocked they are that a thread hasn't been locked yet? Stop with the passive-aggressive suggestions, and let the Moderators do their job; they're obviously quite capable of determining what is allowable on these boards and what isn't.
User avatar
jmndu99
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:18 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by jmndu99 »

schuyler, one reason is that "it is inactionable"
User avatar
joe8d
Posts: 4446
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Buffalo,NY

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by joe8d »

schuyler74 wrote:
And why do people so often pipe in with a post about how shocked they are that a thread hasn't been locked yet? Stop with the passive-aggressive suggestions, and let the Moderators do their job; they're obviously quite capable of determining what is allowable on these boards and what isn't.
:thumbsup
All the Best, | Joe
User avatar
BolderBoy
Posts: 5058
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:16 pm
Location: Colorado

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by BolderBoy »

wholeinone04 wrote:I have a very good friend who is currently paying a FA at Wells Fargo .85% a year for 'financial advice' and I don't know how to convince him to take more control of his investments.
Until he says he is ready and open for change, this is like teaching a pig to sing - wastes your time and annoys the pig.
User avatar
schuyler74
Posts: 234
Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:56 am

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by schuyler74 »

Although the posters are probably correct in that your friend won't change his/her mind, you asked for suggestions. There's a fantastic site that LadyGeek, Neurosphere, et al, are working on. It contains various presentations that forum members have made in the past for all sorts of target audiences. Perhaps you'll find something useful for your situation.

http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Boglehea ... cy_project
placeholder
Posts: 4091
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:43 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by placeholder »

schuyler74 wrote:ISay you have a friend who smokes a pack a day and you feel it is unhealthy to smoke, so you tell him so and provide evidence. The friend listens and says, "I hear you but I'm going to continue to smoke." Should you give up?
Yes you should just as I would expect someone who doesn't like some aspect of my PERSONAL life to respect it even if they thought it was bad for me or they'd be an ex-friend in very short order.
Last edited by placeholder on Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
cheese_breath
Posts: 9937
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by cheese_breath »

wholeinone04 wrote:He definitely cares about his investments but he readily admits that he doesn't want to worry about it - he wants to pay someone to take care of it.
I know people who definitely care about their cars but don't want to become mechanics. They want to pay someone else to take care of them.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.
Twins Fan
Posts: 2775
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:02 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Twins Fan »

schuyler74 wrote:Or am I just being young & naive? :?
Yes.. :happy

To the couple that think is selfish for the many to say, let it go.... It is more that the many know it is foolish to try and change someone that doesn't want to change.
lightheir
Posts: 2488
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2011 11:43 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by lightheir »

It will be difficult to convert him if he is not interested.

I suspect he is very happy with the 'hands-off completely' approach and considers the fees he pays completely appropriate for the time savings he has for not having to worry about it at all. And judging from what his finances are, it does sound like it's working reasonably well for him (despite the fees.)

I think the best way to approach conversion is to actually show him evidence that he's getting zero value-added from those hi-cost funds. Like an article that documents how most of the actively managed funds underperform the SP500 after 5 years and almost all after 10.
Topic Author
wholeinone04
Posts: 250
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 12:45 pm
Location: California

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by wholeinone04 »

JS in SC wrote:This reminds me of when I was a young man working my way through college working at McDonald's. I was sent to the Basic Operation Course in Atlanta to train for a week to become a better assistant manager. The course director asked who thought they were good at motivating their crew. I threw my hand up in the air because I thought I was a pretty darn good assistant manager. He called me to the front of the room in front of the class, folded his arms across his chest, put on his best "I hate the world" look on his face and said, "Motivate me". To which I replied, "You can only motivate people who want to be motivated." He said, "Exactly right". That has been the better part of forty years ago and I still remember the lesson well.

Your friend doesn't want to be motivated. He has made that clear. Tell him you're there for him if he ever changes his mind. And move on...
This is a great story, thanks for sharing.

Thanks for all the responses too, I'm not worried about this guy to be honest. He is saving a ton of money for his age(top 1% I bet and more than me), just paying high fees - there are worse things in the world like not saving at all.

But there's definitely an art to convincing someone. That's what I'm most interested in, how do I be a BH salesmen? People on this forum may hate expensive life insurance products but so many people buy it b/c the salesmen are so apt at making it sound appealing. I want to be able to sell the BH way like they do with life insurance.

Obviously the ship has sailed on this friend of mine but the next time someone comes up I want to do a better job of 'selling them' whether it's tailoring my approaching - if they like math, show them math, if they just want to be BS'ed then BS them, etc.

It's weird that so many people feel so strongly about the BH way but don't bother to try and convince other people. Either way, I haven't given up yet :)
dpc
Posts: 422
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2011 1:41 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by dpc »

Regardless of his immediate response, you planted a seed and it could result in some changes down the road. People like to change their mind in private.
"Worrying is like paying interest on a debt that you might never owe" -- Will Rogers
sls239
Posts: 990
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 4:04 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by sls239 »

who has him in about 30 different mutual funds
Well you made the direct to the pocketbook appeal. The other appeal is the trust appeal (or the ignorance is risky appeal).

You could say something like "With that many different funds, all of them invested in who knows what, how do you even know what your money is actually invested in (and why)?" and then follow up with "I'm not sure I would trust anybody that much, you never know."

I think that it is easy for people with 30 different funds to believe that managing their money is a difficult task and paying someone to do it makes sense. But if a person can realize that no matter how many different funds and investments they have, they really need to understand them all, simplification becomes a natural desire.
User avatar
cheese_breath
Posts: 9937
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by cheese_breath »

wholeinone04 wrote: But there's definitely an art to convincing someone. That's what I'm most interested in, how do I be a BH salesmen? People on this forum may hate expensive life insurance products but so many people buy it b/c the salesmen are so apt at making it sound appealing. I want to be able to sell the BH way like they do with life insurance.
Be careful what you wish for.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.
Twins Fan
Posts: 2775
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 1:02 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by Twins Fan »

The BH way is simple, boring, and average. Good luck "selling" that. :D

People either get it or they don't. You can't force it on someone.
User avatar
grap0013
Posts: 1885
Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 1:24 pm

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by grap0013 »

wholeinone04 wrote: It's weird that so many people feel so strongly about the BH way but don't bother to try and convince other people. Either way, I haven't given up yet :)
You forget that people who come here choose to come to this website by their own volition. The first step is wanting help. If you don't want it, it's annoying when someone else pushes it on you. Think of someone pushing their religion on you, the guy at the weight room who approaches you on his own who "corrects" your weight lifting form, etc... and the list goes on and on. Leave it alone if you want to remain this guy's friend.

You can buy him weekly rounds of golf and drinks when you retire early and he's still working. That's about all you can do.
There are no guarantees, only probabilities.
User avatar
englishgirl
Posts: 2484
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 5:34 pm
Location: FL

Re: How to Convert Someone That Doesn't Want to Be Converted

Post by englishgirl »

I've mentioned indexing to various people over the years. Some have been interested, and one even listened and changed his 401k to index funds. I don't think he totally buys the Boglehead philosophy whole-heartedly, but he gets the concept of low fees = better. Most people just look at me with a bemused blank stare.

I don't try to convert people. I'm also a vegetarian, but don't try to convert people to that either. If they're interested, they might ask me why I don't eat meat, and it might start them thinking. But that's as far as I go - even I get annoyed by the newbie vegans who try to convert me over to their way of eating.
Sarah
Post Reply