Meet Reshell Smith of AMES Financial Solutions
I’m a small town girl. I was born and raised in Crystal River, Florida. After graduation, I took a giant leap and moved to the BIG city of Atlanta, Georgia where I attended Morris Brown College. I was an Accounting major and I had every intention of becoming a CPA until I got to my senior year. Somewhere along the way, I lost the love and zeal for Accounting. However, I am a number’s girl, so I didn’t want to veer too far from Accounting. In 1997, after moving back to Florida, I met a friend who referred me to a Brokerage firm. This was the start of my career in Financial Services. I started at the firm as a Customer Service Representative and ended it after 16 years as a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™. It was an amazing journey and a great company to work for. But after 16 years, I got the “itch” to go out and start my own business. I wanted a business where I could do some of the same work, but serve a different demographic. I wanted to work with more women and minorities. That lead me to where I am today. I am the Founder and President of AMES Financial Solutions. AMES Financial is a virtual comprehensive financial planning firm. I offer a litany of services, including Cash Flow Management, Retirement Planning, and Risk Management, just to name a few. Although, I am the Founder of my firm, I always say it’s a legacy. I call it a legacy because AMES is an acronym for my deceased grandmothers–Ada, Mary, Elizabeth and Sarah. I am their legacy and I often share stories about their education and how they handled their finances.
I’m not sure many business owners would say becoming an entrepreneur was a smooth road. It sure hasn’t been smooth for me. For one, I am in a male dominated industry. When people think of the typical financial planner, a caucasian male probably comes to mind and I am far from that. I have to work harder to get prospects to know, trust and like me. Secondly, it took some time for me to narrow down my niche market. I know who I want to work with, but they don’t know me nor do they know where to find me. Although things are getting better, my industry has not done a good job of reaching out to underserved demographics like women and minorities. In order for me to reach my target market, I have to really get out there. Social media has been a great resource. Then there is the challenge of finding a work-life balance that works for my family. This challenge is not unique to me, most entrepreneurs struggle. I’ve found that there will not be an equal balance between the two. I achieved a decent level of success by creating schedules and systems that work for my situation. It may look crazy to outsiders, but it works for me.
AMES Financial Solutions is a virtual comprehensive financial planning firm. I offer services that are tailored to my client’s needs, including Cash Flow Management, Retirement Planning, Risk Management, Investment Planning and more. My motto is “I help individuals build wealth, live in abundance and leave a legacy.”
I am a teacher at heart. One of the things that my clients and prospects like is the way I explain financial terms and concepts. I explain on their level of understanding and they really appreciate that. Sometimes as experts, we only speak our language and that can be confusing, especially if we are talking to a novice.
I have set specific goals for myself, goals that I have clearly defined and prayed about. Some goals are small and others are so far fetched they seem unattainable. Every goal accomplished is success to me. If I work with a client who struggles with spending and I am able to help her reduce her spending and save more, that is success. When I speak on TV or radio and I get an email or call from a listener, that is success because I know I persuaded that individual to take action. When I sell a book and someone gets an aha moment that, that is success.