Finding Your Way

A Short Fable about Choosing a Financial Advisor

Imagine you are in a dark cave and you are lost.  You have a good flashlight and some provisions but you’ve been in there for a while and you’re starting to get worried.  You simply have no idea which way to go.

As you round a corner, casting your beam this way and that, you are delighted to encounter a group of well-outfitted cave guides.  After you explain your situation, one of the group says confidently, “Don’t worry, I know these caves well.  If you’ll give me part of your provisions and your flashlight, I’ll show you the way.” With a sigh of relief, you are about to hand over your bundle when another guide speaks up.  “Pardon me,” he says, “but that’s just crazy!  You’ll never get out that way.  You’d better give me your provisions and let me show you the way.”  A third chimes in, “No, no—it’s this way,” she says confidently, pointing an entirely different direction.  “You should follow me.”

Uh oh, now what?

If you don’t find your way out, you’re stuck in that cave indefinitely.  Who knows if your provisions will last long enough?  How do you decide which one to believe?

You could just roll the dice and pick one, hoping for the best.  Or, you could calmly sit down with them and ask questions to find out what they know.  You could ask them how long they’ve been guides and where they got their training.  You could ask them why they are confident their way is the best. After that, you may decide to go your own way or you may select one of them to follow but whatever course of action you take will no longer be a blind decision.  If you choose to use the services of a guide you will still have to share your provisions but the moral of this story is don’t give anyone your flashlight.

The End.  Of both the fable and this subject.  Hope it has helped!