Forget the wallet, because clients ask, “How can I quit my job?”

Long before what became known as the Great Resignation, Lisa Brown said she helped clients get out of corporate America as fast as possible.

“I’ve seen a lot of clients who have spent their careers in corporate America and the burnout was real, and it was most evident in higher paying professional jobs,” said Brown, a partner at CI Brightworth Private Wealth.

Brown, whose clientele is mostly business executives, said she’s seen many times how a low-stress environment can benefit people and add years to their lives. “After someone retires and comes into the office, you see it every time. They are sitting in their chair, their shoulders relaxed, the wrinkles have disappeared from their face and in many cases they have lost weight,” she said.

“They have more time to take care of themselves. I saw tremendous value in the quality of life of my customer experience,” she said.

Many of her clients, like the millions of workers who have begun to reevaluate their lives during and after the pandemic, are fed up with their working lives as they know it, she said. “They put their hands up and said, ‘I’m done. I want to spend my time doing more than working,” said Brown, who, along with Susan Bradley of the Sudden Money Institute, participated in a panel titled “The Great Resignation and Unretirement,” at the Invest In Women conference last week. in Atlanta, sponsored by Financial Advisor.

Over the past two years, Brown said she’s had many conversations with clients about their discharge deadline and what’s next for them. “Sometimes it’s us who initiate the conversation, but more often it’s the customers,” she says. “That’s what they want to talk about, not so much their wallet.”

She said clients have to deal with many factors, such as the housing market, aging and gray divorce, that push them to make new decisions that they thought were already in place. “There are all kinds of things brewing in this climate of uncertainty,” she said, noting that not retiring is one of the biggest challenges for people who have already left the world of the company.

For these people, she says, the feathers suddenly hit the fan. “The money that was supposed to be there to support them isn’t there, especially if they didn’t have a financial planner to help them make that decision,” she said.

Brown said she sees more and more people moving from full-time corporate jobs to the gig economy. She said that as soon as these “high-achieving professionals” announce their resignation or retirement, their phones start ringing nonstop, with other companies offering them consulting positions. “Some of these clients have decided to start their own LLC, take on certain projects as they wish, and that’s great and they’re happy with it,” she said. “He provides that nice bridge between a big paycheck and no paycheck.” Additionally, Brown said, there is a network of gig economy workers who provide counseling services.

She relayed the example of one of her clients who, years ago, had a stressful job in aviation. He went fishing for six months and didn’t take any calls, but when he got back he got several voicemails offering him jobs as a consultant. This client, Brown said, is someone who spent money faster than he thought, even with the great financial planning he had had for years. “But he took six months off to decompress and he pressed the reset button,” she said, noting that it was a story of no successful retirement.

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