Chris Grenfell is a well-respected fiduciary with decades of experience under his belt. His interest in the field was sparked by his family members who were in the industry and combined with his love for finance and passion for service, he dedicated his life and skills to it. He joined college early and with his superior academic skills emerged top of his Finance class at university. He then worked for several established fiduciary firms learning as much as he could before going solo. His firm offers highly personalized services to his clients, with the main focus is giving his clients the best possible outcome on their assets and investments. He mentors youth interested in pursuing careers as fiduciaries in his community. He credits a big part of his success to the mentorship he received while starting out.
Chris is deeply passionate about education and has participated in numerous charities working to minimize the sector’s inequalities to education and minimize the sector’s inequalities. He is also a philanthropist at heart. His favorite hobby is mountain bike riding which he started when he was still young. He enjoys it because it gives him a platform to have fun and connect with nature while improving his health. He donates funds to help build mountain bike racing tracks in his community to support the sport and encourage others, especially the youth who may want to build a career.
Chris is also an avid traveler and has been to multiple tourist destinations worldwide, including Egypt, Italy, and Paris. He has tons of other destinations left on his bucket list and would love to see all the wonders of the world.
How did you get started in this business?
I developed an interest while still in school because some of my family members were already in the field. Once I completed school, I joined college, studied finance, and joined a fiduciary firm immediately after graduating. After a couple of years, I felt comfortable setting up my own firm, and that’s how my business started.
How do you make money?
We make money by charging our clients’ fiduciary fees for our services. These vary depending on clients and can be an hourly rate, a fixed retainer, or a percentage of the investment assets we manage.
How long did it take for you to become profitable?
It took about six months because we experienced some setbacks in setting up and finding a new location. It also took a while before the clients started coming in steadily. The first couple of months were about stabilizing, finding the right team, and marketing.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
I never doubted that things would work. Although I experienced several challenges, I was confident that things would work out eventually. I had anticipated some challenges and tried as much as possible to cushion the business by being as fully prepared as possible. Whenever I experienced any challenges, I would go back to the drawing board and find a way around them. I never gave myself any room to despair, and I think that’s how I navigated the challenges.
Do you remember how you got your first client?
The first client was someone I had worked with while I was still employed. He reached out to me just as I had finished setting up, and when I told him about my new venture, he took on my services. He has been with the firm ever since and has even referred a couple of new clients my way.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in your professional life?
That would be having to let some of my staff go several months into the pandemic. The pandemic hit the economy in a major way and my business wasn’t spared. We tried to hang on as much as possible but times got tougher and tougher and we were forced to downsize. Those of us who stayed on have also had to adjust with the times and do with pay cuts as we wait for the situation to improve. With the vaccine and the economy reopening, I look forward to having them back. We made such a formidable team together.
What is one marketing strategy (other than referrals) that you’re using that works really well to generate new business?
The best method for me is through social and business network interactions over events such as tournaments, charity events, and sports. Having personal interaction with prospective clients gives me a platform to get into the details of what I do without any ambiguity. It’s effective because they get to understand the why of my company.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
I would advise my younger self to take more risks and not to be so afraid of failure. Business is all about taking risks, and while some succeed and take off, others fail significantly. In these successes and failures lies some amazing lessons.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
I think my success comes from the superior customer experience which I extend to my clients. I accord each of them the attention they need and handle their assets and investments as if they were my own- with utmost care.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Every time my clients succeed, I find fulfillment. The feeling never gets old. I’m just as satisfied now with their success as I was with my first client.
What does the future hold for your business? What are you most excited about?
We look forward to going back to full operation, and I’m super excited to help my clients grow their investments and assets with the economy opening up.
What business books have inspired you?
My first favorite is Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell. It has some excellent ideas on how to take your business and life to the next level.
I also would highly recommend Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by James Clear. It’s awesome for building great habits, and it helped me understand how big an impact my habits have on my life.
Finally, the book that I think everyone needs to read is Eat That Frog by Brian Tracy. It’s great for fighting procrastination and will motivate you to do what you need to do.
Are you willing to be a mentor?
Absolutely! I benefited a lot from the mentors I had growing up and would love to offer the same to anyone interested.