Megan Marshall, Financial Advisor at Lakeside Wealth Management, continues to grow within the industry, excelling in her field as she bucks industry norms. Marshall, who began working at Lakeside Wealth Management after completing her degree at Purdue four years ago, is fully licensed and able to advise personal clients.
After realizing nursing wasn’t her ideal fit nor true passion, Marshall soon saw many of her interests align within the financial planning program at Purdue University.
“Psychology, banking, and teaching were three skillsets that either ran in my family or I found interest in. They also all happen to play a huge role in financial planning and advising,” Marshall said.
After graduating, Marshall was set to enter her field. Being a young, female advisor in a male-dominated field could have held her back, but Lakeside Wealth Management made sure that didn’t happen.
“Historically, the industry has been very male-dominated. Through college, my experience with advisors were all male,” Marshall said.
As of 2018, just 32% of financial advisors are women, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
These issues, though, never even came up in conversation as she found her home at Lakeside Wealth Management. Marshall gushed about the constant support and motivation provided by her team at Lakeside, encouraging her to be confident in her practice and challenge the social norms.
“Whenever I doubt myself, my team always reassures me that I can do it, and do it well,” Marshall said. “They are also all very willing to help me with anything and back me up.”
Along with the low number of females in the industry, Marshall’s age is also an uncommon trait. Today, the average age of a financial advisor is 51, according to Cerulli Associates. This number leaves a narrow window of just 10% of financial advisors under the age 35.
But Marshall, 26, doesn’t let these numbers discourage her.
Marshall noted she has many role models and mentors at Lakeside including Kelly Shikany, another female financial advisor, and Mark Chamberlain, CEO.
“A lot of new advisors in the industry are placed in a call center. Something unique about Lakeside is that I was able to bolt right into a team,” Marshall said. “I get to work under Mark, be in his meetings, support him, and I even get to work with some of his clients’ children.”
Marshall often meets with individuals who are at transition points in their lives, such as graduating high school and college seniors entering the workforce.
Throughout her short time in the industry, Marshall has seen a shift. She recalled many uplifting moments during women-focused conferences and even non-female focused conferences.
“They [male advisors] always ask me for advice on what they can do to attract women to their firms. I really do feel like the overall want and need for women in the industry is beginning to be sought out. There’s more of an optimistic view than a close-minded one lately,” she said. “People are realizing that there’s a need for women. Gender aside, everyone brings something different to the table.”
Marshall urges young females to take the jump and challenge social norms when choosing to enter the financial field.
“I think it’s really important to find a firm that is going to lift you up and help surround you with people who are going to support you and treat you with respect.”
Her early experience interning at Lakeside played a huge role in her decision to join the team full-time.
“It’s all about the culture. I truly felt valued and I felt like the work that I did was meaningful. I knew that what I was doing was actually making a difference,” she said.
The focus on client relationships and a focus on community involvement align perfectly with Marshall’s values.
“Here, clients aren’t just a number on a piece of paper,” Marshall said. “There’s also a huge focus on volunteerism. I was always raised to give back. Currently, I don’t really feel like I can make the biggest impact financially, so I try to give by donating my time, which Lakeside is super supportive of.”
Marshall volunteers for Family House in Valparaiso and sits on the board of directors for the Porter County Community Foundation.
Looking forward, Marshall hopes to attain her Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification and continue to move away from her comfort zone.
“Although I do feel like I’ve come a long way, I want to continue to surround myself with people who force me out of my comfort zone.”
When Marshall isn’t working, she enjoys spending time with her newlywed husband, Michael and their dog Knox and cat Pippa. She also enjoys running and on occasion you can catch her competing in Tough Mudders with her Lakeside team.
“Someday, I would love to run a marathon, but only one.”
For more information on Lakeside Wealth and their newest female financial advisor, Megan Marshall, visit Lakeside’s website at https://www.lakesidewealth.com/meet-the-team/.