- APRIL POTTER
BONNIE LEMIEUX, CFP®, CIM®, Senior Financial / Coach Advisor, MD Management Ltd, Sudbury, Ont.
BONNIE LEMIEUX, CFP, CIM Senior Financial Consultant |
Certified Financial Planner| Certified Coach Practitioner,
MD Management Limited, Sudbury, Ontario
“Helping Medical Specialists Achieve Financial Well-being."
CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and COACH PRACTITIONER Bonnie Lemieux has always had an interest in finance. Likewise, she has always wanted to be a teacher, psychologist and coach. While many people struggle to find the perfect career for their interests, Bonnie has achieved this goal. Beyond this, Bonnie has the added reward of working exclusively with physicians. As a Senior Financial Consultant for MD Management Limited, she helps physicians focus on providing the highest level of care to her community – by removing their financial pressures. It is a service that Bonnie feels both “privileged” and “blessed” to offer.
“As a Certified Coach Practitioner, I have deep and meaningful conversations with my clients,” explains Bonnie. “I want to truly understand a client’s values so that I can help them live their best lives. I specialize in helping medical professionals stress less about the financial world so that they can focus on their life-long specialties – saving and improving the lives of others.”
Bonnie uses her coaching skills and financial education to teach and mentor her clients. Her goal is to give health care providers the time and space they need to develop a successful financial plan and stick to it. By “putting pen to paper” her clients discover what they wish to manifest in their lives.
“My existing physician clients have unique individual challenges that they struggle with either mentally, physically, or emotionally,” adds Bonnie. “We spend time exploring their values and imagining their best futures. We place specific emphasis on home, lifestyle and family. We develop goals for the future that strongly correlate to values and develop action plans with specific steps. My clients tell me they spend their days running in all directions – our meetings are the only time of day when they get to take a breath, pause, reflect and prioritize their desires for a successful life.”
The Path to MD
Bonnie grew up in Northern Ontario and knew from a young age that she wanted a career in finance. After high school, she moved to Ottawa where she had a job waiting for her with Scotiabank. After getting her start with the bank, Bonnie eventually returned to her Sudbury roots where she pursued a Certified Financial Planning (CFP) designation. After receiving her CFP designation, she spent one year teaching the French version of the CFP course to College Boreal college students in Sudbury.
“After I started my family, I went to work for another financial institution for about one year before I found an opportunity to work with high-net-worth clients with Scotia Private Client Group,” says Bonnie. “I've been with MD for the past four years, to be honest, I wish I’d found them sooner. MD truly puts doctors first. We meet exclusively with physicians and their families and we truly understand their life cycle. A doctor’s journey begins as a student, then a resident, and finally as an incorporated practice owner. We understand the struggle of these early years like no other Financial Advisor could.”
MD provides holistic financial planning and Bonnie says that when dealing with medical professionals, holistic takes on a slightly different meaning.
“If you’re a doctor the word holistic really means something to you,” explains Bonnie. “Health is your profession; you look at the totality of a patient and you don’t ignore the rest of the body while treating a singular problem. We approach a person’s relationship with money the same way.”
Financial Planning – is Better with a Coach
Bonnie feels she has always understood that emotional intelligence plays a role in how money is managed. She herself grew up with a strong drive for financial security in her adult life. As a result, she has developed a successful career in financial planning. As a coach she helps others understand connections between their emotions and their money.
“I think I was smart enough to know that building wealth is not just about investing,” explains Bonnie. “I knew that financial planning was the key. What I did not expect as I grew in my financial planning career, was how much of creating a financial plan for others involves coaching and digging deep into the personal history. As I was building relationships with my clients, I could see how building their financial plans would require a deeper understanding of their emotional relationships with money.”
Bonnie has been a Certified Coach Practitioner for the past two years. She has focused the results of client sessions on accountability to goal setting and expectations for their money and future.
“I think that’s where a coach differs from a traditional financial planner,” says Bonnie. “A coach has a deeper impact on a client and their role in the process. I pursued my coaching designation because I believe in involving my clients in the planning process and providing a foundation for them that really creates results.”
Bonnie pushes her clients to look at what is happening in their life currently, but to also focus on longer term goals. Clients are encouraged to discover what exactly they are trying to achieve over the lifetime of their finances.
“I’m here to support my clients through this journey,” adds Bonnie. “But ultimately it’s in their hands. I can write the best financial plan for them on the planet but if they’re not accountable to their own goals and objectives, it’s just another piece of paper they’ll end up tossing in the garbage one day.”
To discover any preconceived notions about money, Bonnie asks her clients tough questions. “How was your childhood?”, “How did you feel about money growing up?” and “What does success mean to you?” – are prime examples. The self-discovery endgame is financial success.
“We all have stories – but I think human beings too often focus on their problems without ever finding solutions,” says Bonnie. “So, I align myself with what clients want to achieve while encouraging them to go through a self-discovery process that will empower them and again, hold them accountable for their own goals.”
Meeting with Bonnie takes multiple sessions to strategize and create steps that will remove barriers to achieving financial goals. Bonnie uses a variety of coaching techniques, among the most powerful is visualization.
“I’ve been trained to ask many questions and coach clients through a process where we start big and then narrow things down,” explains Bonnie. “I’ll ask a client to picture themselves sitting in a rocking chair at 90 years old and ask them what retirement looks like for them. What have they achieved? It’s a self-discovery process that really gets people thinking. Next, I’ll ask them to tell me the obstacles they had to overcome in order to achieve this wonderful retirement lifestyle that they’ve visualized. It’s usually a big “ah-ha” moment. But a conversation like this would never come about in a first meeting, self-discovery is a process and a journey.”
With a greater understanding of a client’s obstacles, Bonnie can help look for solutions to the problems they may be facing. She says that finding a solution to a problem is an action step that helps put accountability back in the client’s court.
“Of course, I’m here as a financial planner and an investor to guide them,” says Bonnie. “But action steps really get clients involved in their own planning process – feeling emotions, developing solutions, and understanding the pay off to the solutions they’ve created. I will ask how they feel about achieving their retirement goals now that they have visualized how it all works. Many are relieved and feel a weight lift from their shoulders. It’s a powerful thing to have a financial plan, but even more powerful to know you’ve actively helped to put things into place.”
Bonnie has witnessed how accountability and engagement can make a big difference. Clients who are involved in their own process are more likely to take the steps they have personally determined are required.
“Which is why it’s important to self-discover and then become empowered on their own,” explains Bonnie. “Creating your own solutions, feeling good about the action plan you’ve put into place – these are really powerful ways to be involved in manifesting the destiny of your choice.”
The Journey Matters Most
Bonnie explains that the victory of achieving a successful retirement is much sweeter when the journey has been an empowering experience. Investing is a richer experience for her clients because they actively participate rather than having someone else make every decision for them – and lead them to the products they want to sell.
“Too often people think that financial planning is all about the products you buy,” adds Bonnie. “I think that it has nothing to do with that, because it isn’t the end goal that matters – it’s the journey. You could be invested anywhere but if you’re not truly invested in yourself – that investment may not go anywhere. I know I’m good at what I do, but a partnership works best if you want a financial planner and coach who can benefit your lifetime.”
Bonnie is more than happy to give back to her community in this way.
“I’m glad to offer something unique,” adds Bonnie. “You can't find this kind of service anywhere. I want to be remembered as the one who helped someone write out the goals they wanted to achieve and then stood by them continuously to make sure they were on track to achieve them. I want people to look back at 90 years old when they’ve met all of their goals, knowing they’re the very definition of success – and knowing that success was mapped out with Bonnie.”
April Potter is a veteran writer with expertise in financial services including nearly 15 years in debt restructuring. April has written for multiple online publications on a variety of subjects and offers a range of social media. Also a painter, her background in finance is balanced by her artistic endeavors.
Bonnie Lemieux, CFP, CIM
Senior Financial Consultant
MD Management Limited
A1 - 1942 Regent Street,
Sudbury, ON P3E 5V5
705 671-9746 ext 4421