As an officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve, Commander Cameron Collier knew the call to return to active duty could come at any time. When he received orders in 2017 to serve a year-long deployment in the Middle East, Collier immediately swung into action. Not only did he need to prepare his family for his absence, but also his clients at Jehl & Kreilach Financial Management. That part of his deployment couldn’t have gone more smoothly.
“We had an opportunity to prove why our team approach is so valuable,” says Collier. “It’s not just something we talk about.”
Jehl & Kreilach Financial Management helps clients plan for and achieve their financial goals. What helps set the company apart from others is its collaborative approach. Although each client works primarily with a particular Certified Financial Planner® like Collier, that person works closely with the entire team to give each client the benefit of the group’s collective knowledge and experience.
“I’m not just an investment advisor; I’m part of a financial planning practice,” explains Collier. “The client’s financial plan, based on their values and goals, drives investment decisions.”
Collier had four months to prepare clients for his absence. Each one received a letter, and he delivered the news in person to as many as possible. In the weeks before his departure, Collier scheduled individual meetings to review each client’s individual plan of action for the coming year. Those meetings also served to introduce Gregg Jehl or Kevin Kreilach, one of whom would take personal responsibility for each relationship.
Everything else stayed the same. The firm’s internal review process continued uninterrupted, with monthly assessments and quarterly reports for each client. The only difference was that Jehl or Kreilach conducted the meetings rather than Collier. It went so smoothly that clients often seemed more concerned with Collier’s personal safety in the Middle East, knowing their assets were still being appropriately managed at home.
“We made sure to not change the process,” says Collier. “It’s really a testament to the people and systems we have in place at Jehl & Kreilach.”
For his part, Collier tried to stay as connected as possible, though he was not allowed to conduct business or interact directly with clients while deployed. He sent quarterly newsletters in which he explained his duties and shared observations, and in turn his assistant provided him with weekly updates from the office.
“I did as much as I could to stay engaged from where I was stationed in Qatar,” says Collier.
Back home, Collier believes the experience gained from his deployment will add depth to the Jehl & Kreilach team. In particular, he notes that his leadership roles in the Navy have enriched his understanding of people, human nature, and personalities. This valuable skill helps him connect with clients to understand the reasons driving their financial goals.
“There’s so much more to financial planning than just managing assets,” says Collier. “Because people make financial decisions for reasons that aren’t always ‘financial,’ we strive to base our planning on a client’s values. When faced with a financial decision, we should always refer to what we are trying to accomplish, what outcome lines up with their values.”
Of course, says Collier, goals and benchmarks have to be part of any financial strategy, but when “life happens,” the plan must allow room to react accordingly. That requires a posture reflective of service and stewardship, rather than one simply focused on profit. As part of the Jehl & Kreilach philosophy, it’s a big reason why Collier feels grateful to be part of the team.
“Gregg and Kevin’s mindset when it comes to serving clients first has always been very important to me,” says Collier.
In fact, Collier feels so strongly about values-driven planning that he obtained the Certified Kingdom Advisor® designation. As a CKA®, Collier has undergone additional training and vetting to demonstrate not only technical competence, but also the ability to incorporate biblical wisdom in his counsel. It adds yet another layer to Jehl & Kreilach’s full-service financial management expertise.
With his recent deployment behind him, Collier hopes this experience will show others the robust strength of the Jehl & Kreilach approach. Clients know they have a team working on their behalf that can adjust quickly to changes.
“Both my clients and I quickly reached a level of comfort knowing Gregg and Kevin had everything under control,” says Collier.
With a rekindled passion for military families, Collier hopes to help more of them manage their financial futures, regardless of where they are stationed. It’s his way to thank them for a life of service he understands in a very personal way.
Address: 919 S. Harrison St., Suite 500 Fort Wayne, Indiana 46802
Phone: (260) 420-0268
Years in Business: 13
Number of Employees: 5
Products & Services: nvestment planning and evaluation; business financial planning; personal financial planning; fiduciary services; personal services; family strategic planning; trust services