Barry Ringelheim, senior vice president, investments, Ringelheim Wealth Management UBS Financial Services.

I grew up on Long Island, just outside of New York City, and graduated from Bryant University in 1968 with a degree in marketing.

To make a long story short, after I completed my service with the National Guard, the market was booming so I decided to take a job with a brokerage firm. I spent the first 12 years of my career focused on building my clientele by hosting investment seminars at hotels, sometimes up to eight events in a weekend.

I like this business because it gives me the opportunity to help clients realize their goals and objectives. I’ve survived in this business so long because I’ve built long-lasting relationships based on trust. Today, I work with entire families; recently, I’ve added fourth-generation clients.

My own practice became multi-generational in 2009, when my son Harris joined the firm. I’m very fortunate to work with him at UBS, and he has taken the business to greater heights.

During my 46-year career, the industry has changed dramatically. It used to be product specific—mainly investing in stocks or bonds. In 1968 there was still a ticker-tape, and people smoked cigarettes and cigars at their desks. Very simply, today the number of products is enormous, and it can be overwhelming for a solo advisor.

The clients’ needs have changed too. If a client needed life insurance or long-term care insurance, these were products and services we couldn’t offer.

Today, a good team can meet these needs. I tell clients that your insurance agent, attorney, accountant and my team are the most important people you’re ever going to work with, and you should have a good working relationship with them.

My team and I have branched out into more holistic planning, including generational planning. We sit down with families and say, “Here are your assets. Here is a way you can best pass this down more efficiently to your children and grandchildren.” We’ve rounded out our practice to help our clients deal with the bumps in the road.

But some things haven’t changed. In our business, trust is still the number one key, and we still like to meet people in person. I want to sit down with clients over lunch at my office or in their homes, and we always make ourselves available to meet in person, because you have to build a business face to face.

Only by sitting down with clients, can we help realize their objectives.

As told to Andrew Welsch.


Image: Harris Ringelheim, financial adivsor, and Barry Ringelheim, senior vice president, investments, Ringelheim Wealth Management UBS Financial Services. Photo: Matt Furman.

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