Brandon Johnson: Managing $1.8 Billion in WealthDaniel ScrivnerLast Updated: January 27, 2021
Brandon Johnson is the CEO and CIO of JFG Wealth, which oversees more than $1.8 billion in wealth for families across the United States. In this episode, Brandon and Daniel discuss the history and nuances of family offices, how to approach wealth, the spectrum of risk, teaching kids about saving and investing, and so much more.
Brandon serves on the Boards of Trustees for the University of Denver, Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation, and ACE Scholarships. Brandon regularly speaks at industry conferences across the country and is a thought leader in the family office and wealth management industries.
“Once we have a starting point and a target, we can start to evaluate, do we turn left, do we turn right? How do we measure success? Then that dynamic process never stops.” – Brandon Johnson
Chapters in this interview:
- 00:00:39 – History of the Johnson Financial Group
- 00:08:30 – Brandon’s path to wealth management
- 00:12:50 – What is a family office?
- 00:15:38 – How JFG is different from other family offices, and the importance of a relational approach to wealth management
- 00:25:34 – Keys to successful family wealth management
- 00:37:32 – Teaching kids about saving, investing, and giving back
- 00:46:17 – JFG’s process for working with new families
- 00:53:52 – Working with families with investments as the final stage of the process
- 00:59:24 – The spectrum of risk and returns
- 01:08:29 – Diversification and recency bias
- 01:15:41 – Defining success
- 01:22:05 – Brandon’s favorite restaurants, as a Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef
For more, explore the transcript of this episode.
Links from the Episode
- Connect with Brandon: LinkedIn | Website
- Johnson Financial Group launches wealth management arm | Denver Business Journal
- Katy Industries
- Missouri Kansas Texas (MKT) Railroad
- Union Pacific Railroad
- Hotel restaurant management degree and culinary school (Le Cordon Bleu Paris)
- Young Americans Bank
- Daniel Kahneman
- Amos Tversky
- Growth mindset
- Sushi Den
- Bobby Flay’s Grill It!
- Julia Child
- Family Office
- New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)
- Trust Company
- Fiduciary Duty
- Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA) account
- Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)
- Impact-focused investing
- Generational-Skipping Trust (GST)
- Spousal Lifetime Access Trust
- Behavioral Finance
- Individual Retirement Account (IRA)
- Treasury Note
- 10-Year Treasury Note
- Basis Point
- Municipal Bond
- Corporate Bond
- High-Yield Bond
- Blue Chip
- Small Cap Stocks vs. Large Cap Stocks
- Developed Market
- Emerging Market Fund
- Private Equity vs. Public Equity
- Direct Lending
- Mezzanine Debt
- Asset -Backed Loans
- Specialty Finance
- Senior Security
- Real Assets
- Venture Capital
- Asset Allocation
- Diversification (and “Diworsification”)
- Recency Bias
- S&P 500
- Warren Buffet
- Berkshire Hathaway
Brandon’s Favorite Books on Wealth
- The Cycle of the Gift: Family Wealth and Wisdom by James E. Hughes, Jr.
- Complete Family Wealth by James E. Hughes, Jr.
- Silver Spoon Kids: How Successful Parents Raise Responsible Children by Eileen Gallo and Jon Gallo
- Navigating the Dark Side of Wealth: A Life Guide for Inheritors by Thayer Cheatham Willis
- Beyond Gold: True Wealth for Inheritors by Thayer Cheatham Willis
- The Blessing Of A Skinned Knee: Raising Self-Reliant Children by Wendy Mogel
- Bridging Generations: Transitioning Family Wealth and Values for a Sustainable Legacy by Amy A. Castoro and Roy O. Williams
- Preparing Heirs: Five Steps to a Successful Transition of Family Wealth and Values by Roy O. Williams
- Children of Paradise: Successful Parenting for Prosperous Families by Lee Hausner
- The Little Book of Behavioral Investing: How not to be your own worst enemy by James Montier
- Make Your Kid A Money Genius (Even If You’re Not): A Parents’ Guide for Kids 3 to 23 by Beth Kobliner
Brandon’s Favorite Books on Investing and Giving for Kids (Age 13+)
Brandon’s Favorite Books on Leadership
- Transfluence: How to Lead with Transformative Influence in Today’s Climates of Change by Walt Rakowich
- Good Profit: How Creating Value for Others Built One of the World’s Most Successful Companies by Charles Koch
- Extreme Ownership (How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win) by Jocko Willink
- Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting Out of the Box by The Arbinger Institute
- 5 Levels of Leadership: Proven Steps to Maximize Your Potential by John Maxwell
- Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek
The Spectrum of Risk
Lower risk, public capital:
- 1-Year Treasury Bills
- 10-Year Treasury Bills
- Municipal Bonds
- Corporate Bonds
- High-Yield Bonds
- Blue Chip Large Cap Stocks
- Small Cap Stocks in International Developed Markets
- Small Cap Stocks in Emerging Markets
Increased risk, private capital:
- Private Credit (direct lending, mezzanine debt, asset-backed loans, and specialty finance)
- Private Real Assets (real estate, energy, infrastructure, and agriculture)
- Private Equity (growth, buyout, and venture capital)
Teaching Kids about Giving, Saving, and Spending
At age five, introduce the concept of give-save-spend. When children receive their allowance, or any other income, teach them to give away 10%, save 45%, and spend the remaining 45%. This simple 10-45-45 split helps kids understand that a portion of everything they earn should be given away, saved, and invested.
- For Giving: Talk to your children about what they’re interested in and passionate about. Let them decide which charity or charities they’d like to give to each year. You can go even further by volunteering at your children’s favorite charities and allowing them to present each charity with a check of their own gift so that it feels real to them.
- For Saving: Set up savings accounts (such as at Young Americans Bank) for your children and have them start contributing to it as early as possible. When they reach the 7th grade, let them choose whether to put their savings into a savings account or a UTMA investment account. Talk to your kids about how you think they should approach investing, but ultimately let them invest their money into the companies that they love and believe in. Review their investments with them every 3 or 6 months so they begin to understand how investments grow (and shrink) over time, depending on factors like the economy and the broader stock market.
- For Spending: Let your children make their own decisions about how to spend their money. You can weigh in, but ultimately respect that it is your children’s money to manage. Full ownership and empowerment are important.
On Outliers, Daniel Scrivner explores the tactics, routines, and habits of world-class performers working at the edge—in business, investing, entertainment, and more. In each episode, he decodes what they’ve mastered and what they’ve learned along the way. Start learning from the world’s best today.
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