David Lewis is an expert in life insurance planning for small business owners and professionals, with a focus on custom, high cash value, dividend-paying whole life insurance.
Most people make financial decisions either by gut feelings, by past experiences, or by trying to predict what will happen in the future. Each of these ways seems like a safe bet, but they often leave money (and opportunity) on the table. Worse, there are many times when making decisions this way is disastrous. By the time a person figures out what went wrong, it's usually too late. 2020 was a prime example of this.
By some estimates, nearly 40% of small businesses were destroyed last year. Business owners were caught off guard, with no safety net, and no real plan to save them. David shows small business owners how they can protect themselves going forward — protect their business, their future income, and their savings in a systematic, safe, predictable way, without taking risks they can't afford to take.
Years ago, David saw first-hand just how devastating it can be to have a bad (or no real) financial plan... or one that relies on taking excessive risks. At one of his early jobs — this was just before the dot-com bust — some of his friends had invested a lot of their retirement savings into the company's stock purchase plan. They were doing great. The company was doing great. Everyone was making a lot of money, and everybody was happy. Then, they suddenly lost everything. They were heavily invested in the telecoms and tech companies of that time and you know what happened there. And for the next 2 years, they just got hammered.
David can remember going out to dinner with some co-workers and one of them was in tears. She didn’t know what to do because she was in her 60s and she’d just lost something like $300,000 in the stock market and she was ruined. That was most of her retirement savings. She couldn't retire. And, the company was laying everyone off, and she was forced to cash out what little she had left to pay for living expenses. She had unemployment like the rest of us, but it just wasn't enough. So, the idea that maybe he could somehow protect people like her from losing their life savings really intrigued him.
David really didn’t understand a lot about how the stock market or the financial industry worked but it was still very interesting to him. Back then, MetLife gave you the freedom to follow a lot of different paths. They were trying to distance themselves from being just a life insurance company. They wanted to be seen as a comprehensive financial services company that offered investment advice, financial planning, as well as multiple lines of insurance. So when David was offered a job there, he took it. In his office, there were several Certified Financial Planners, an investment advisor, a few seasoned life insurance agents, a stockbroker, and a partridge in a pear tree.
David shadowed all of them, but he was really fascinated by the company’s whole life insurance product. Everyone seemed to ignore it, which made David want to learn more about it. It’s funny, MetLife used to be primarily a life insurance company, but it had branched off into many other lines of business and everyone seemed to be fascinated by everything but its life insurance products.
David thinks the turning point for him was when he was working late one night with his boss. His boss was a financial planner and had also run the entire office for something like 30 years.
Anyway, they went out to meet one of his clients, deliver their financial plan to them, and collect a check for the plan. On the way back to the office, David asked his boss if people really read through all those pages — the financial plan looked like a small telephone book. His response was something like “Who knows?” This really baffled him.
David thought they were in the business of helping folks sort out their long-term financial plans so he pressed him further about the issue. And his response has stuck with David ever since: ‘I invest some of my money in our 401(k) plan but most of my money goes into a whole life insurance policy... You know why? Because I know exactly where my money is and I sleep well at night.’
That’s when it really hit David. This guy who had been in the business for 30 years, was a Certified Financial Planner, and by all measures was a competent and successful investment advisor, and had access to just about any investment you could think of, chose to put the bulk of his own money into whole life insurance.
That was the moment when David decided he needed to specialize in life insurance. David told this story to lots of people. Some take it to heart. Some ignore it. Something else he has noticed: the business owners that are especially vulnerable to financial shock almost never carry any whole life insurance. And, the ones who are mostly immune to everything carry a lot of it.
Listeners will learn how to save money, protect their business, and provide for their family after they die, without taking excessive risks. They'll learn how to make better financial decisions on their own, without relying on "expert opinion" — something most people probably don't need for most financial decisions. They'll also learn more about the nature of risk, and how to plan for the future when that future is mostly unpredictable.
Interview David Lewis, The Rogue Agent, to discuss...
- Why do successful businesses fail?
- Why do some successful investors and asset managers buy whole life insurance for themselves or recommend it to others?
- What farm animals can teach you about predicting the future?
- Why Back To The Future II is a great lesson in making better financial decisions?
- How to not look needy or desperate when buying your next car?
- How to get customer service to help you negotiate fees and interest charges off your credit cards?
- How to avoid making compromises when making financial decisions that involve more than one person?
- Why most business owners probably don't need a financial advisor (and what they need instead)?
David Lewis Guest Expert Interview Credentials
- David has been an independent life insurance agent since 2005.
- Over the last 15 years, he’s helped develop educational and marketing content for large financial firms like Allstate, New York Life, State Farm, AmTrust, and J.G. Wentworth.
- California State University (CSU) teaches his essays on Human Life Value and life insurance as part of its Expository Writing and Reading Course.
- His articles have been featured in online publications like ThinkAdvisor, The Huffington Post, NuWire Investor, and RealClearMarkets.
Guest Expert Availability
By telephone and video call from Kenly, NC Eastern Standard Time
In person in Raleigh, NC
Social Media Promotions
How this expert can help promote your show:
- A private social media forum he owns.
- Through traditional social media networks (i.e. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter).
Guest Expert Interview Booking Contact
NOTE: David's business is based in the U.S. and his information and advice is only meant for and applicable to individuals living in the United States.
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