Navigating Markets and Milestones – A Professional Journey with Joey Miller, Financial Planner, New Braunfels, Texas

In the world of investment and financial markets, few professionals possess the depth of experience and dedication of Joey Miller. With over two decades of industry experience, Joey has navigated through the highs and lows of financial trends, always with a keen eye on sustainable success and ethical practice.

This interview delves into Joey’s professional journey, exploring the formative experiences that shaped his career, his guiding principles, and his strategic approaches to overcoming industry challenges. Joey’s insights not only illuminate his personal and professional growth but also offer valuable lessons for anyone aspiring to make a mark in the tumultuous field of investment.

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Who or What Inspired You to Pursue a Career in Your Chosen Field?

I grew up in a small community in Oregon, which was what I would call a blue-collar area. Paper mills, lumber mills, manufacturing, and a steel mill employed many of the citizens for a modest living. I had my son my senior year of high school, and as a single parent, I was forced into the working and parenting role very early in life.

When I turned 21, I got a job at the Albany Papermill and learned what long hours and rotating shifts were all about. I led the mill in overtime and made a nice living, but I was working incredible hours at a place that had no certainty of being around for the next 20 years. While working at the mill, I had a 401k and showed a lot of interest in managing my 401k.

As time went on, I consumed myself in learning more about the markets and started reaching out to people in the space of investing. I met real estate investors, option traders, and value stock investors, and I felt I had finally found my niche. I left the mill to work for an options educator for a couple of years and ultimately started my own company.

Can You Share a Defining Moment That Shaped Your Career?

The most defining moment that changed my career was about two years after I left the paper mill. The mill closed down, and all the people I used to work with had to find other careers. I wanted a career I loved, one that would never go away, one where my efforts and work values would allow me to stay in the field I loved and help people I cared about get a good return in the marketplace.

How Would You Describe Your Personal and Professional Values?

In my personal life, I strive for balance. I try not to work too much, get over-allocated in one area, or get too excited about the latest trend. I focus on doing the same in my personal life. Stay even-tempered and unemotional when others are excited or negative when the economy is struggling. I try to have a long-term view of positioning for whatever the market or life brings, as the one thing that is constant is change.

How Do You Define Success?

Success, well, there is no short answer here. At my parents’ funeral, they were surrounded by friends, family, and the community. They built relationships and shared a lot of love. I think life is about balance, keeping modest debt, and sharing time with loved ones.

Being there for your friends, family, and community and donating time and money to the underprivileged. Provide a safe place or home for loved ones in times of need, and pick up the phone to reach out to your friends, clients, and family to check in on them and support them through their lives.

Who is the One Entrepreneur or Business Leader That You Consider to Be Your Greatest Example and Inspiration?

I’ve been blessed with many role models along the way. Jim Hopper, Randy Grudzinski, Joe Michaletz, Devon Pearsall, and Scott Estill were all people who shared their knowledge on investing in equities and real estate. Scott taught me tax strategies for assistance.

Warren Buffett provided books of wisdom and a calm voice in times of turbulence. All provided similar messages of calm and patience and waiting for the right opportunity to present itself for sustaining balance in a portfolio.

What Does Your typical Day Look Like, and How Do You Make It Productive?

My typical day is spent in front of my computer and on the phone. I wake up and read any new reports that are out. I will weekly check up on the various assets we are invested in and then visit with clients on their needs, objectives, and goals they have. My job is to help people navigate their lives and the economy to provide a path to take them from where they are to where they want to go.

At some point, I’ll take a walk and listen to the Bible In A Year to get out and breathe some fresh air and get some exercise before returning back to my office to check for any updates. By 5 pm, I’m in dad mode, running the kids around to their sporting events and taking care of the house with my wife.

How Do You Stay Informed About Industry Trends and Emerging Technologies?

In my industry, there is no shortage of reports on the equities markets written by economists and professional investors. The Federal Reserve also puts out a great report after their meetings. We have unemployment and consumer spending reports.

There are also quarterly reports from some of our industry leaders. Then there are reports such as job creation migration reports showing what markets people are moving into and where they are leaving.

I’m lucky that between the large companies and economists, we do not have a shortage of reports that help guide investing decisions as we go forward. However, in the blink of an eye, the government can make or change a law that puts the best models in turmoil. Geo-political events can pop up and change the scene overnight.

Can You Recall a Significant Challenge or Failure You Faced and How You Overcame It?

Life is full of challenges, from being a young man raising a child to starting a company and doing a project, but the client doesn’t pay on time. Economy shifts and projects not closing out on time are always a struggle. These challenges are always there, but diversification and patience have proven valuable in times of frustration.

I remember that, early on, as a cabinet maker, I built all the cabinets and was scheduled for delivery. I was only 26 at the time and needed to get the cabinets installed over the weekend as I had another job Monday morning. When I showed up on the job site, there was no power or lights as the power had gone out.

I had traveled a long way so I needed to borrow a generator, bring in lighting, and work all night to meet the deadline to be able to be at work on time Monday morning. All these years later, challenges always come up so being flexible and patient have been important virtues to overcome what life may throw at you.

What Is Your Approach to Starting a New Project?

In the world of investing and starting a new project, I call my team and first get their feedback. Then I reach out to others in the industry to see how they solved the problem in the past. I then start designing the approach or plan to execute on and take it back to the team for approval. Once we have an agreed-upon strategy, we implement the plan. Doing the research first and asking a lot of questions doesn’t guarantee success but it gets us closer to the goal.

What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?

I recently had to let a great employee go. He was a hard worker and always on time; however, he also made a lot of clerical errors. After over a year, we knew for the job he had he wasn’t a good fit.

I called the employee and made him aware of the plan, but we just couldn’t keep him on. I gave him a four-month severance and a great review and had to let him go. It still bothers me losing such a great employee, but I also know he will find the right fit.

What was the worst job you ever had, and what did you learn from it?

When I was 17, I worked at a motorhome company. I was the youngest person there, and the hours were long. Drug use was everywhere, and the working conditions were poor. I just did my job and worked hard and while the money was good for a 17-year-old kid, I learned that is not the life I wanted.

Tell us about a skill you taught yourself.

As a young cabinet maker, designing and building cabinets every house presented a problem. The houses were never square and level, and every design was different. The material was never perfect so I just had to solve one small problem at a time until ultimately, we had completed the job. Relying on technology and resources that are changing daily, I was able to upgrade tools and hire employees to better use my time.

What people in your life or career have had the greatest impact on you?

I’ve been blessed with a lot of role models, some who taught me what to aspire to and some who showed me what not to be like. I had great parents who taught me how to work hard, be independent, and face challenges head-on. In my working career, I have had a few mentors who showed me how they conduct business and offered insight into new investments, tools, and economists.

I’ve seen companies struggle and succeed and struggle and fail, and normally it comes down to being proactive and not hiding from challenges. When I see a problem, I like to tackle it while it’s small so it doesn’t get bigger.

What do you think makes you successful?

I believe I have had success because I work hard. Often outworking others. I search and invest alongside my clients so that I have a vested interest in the same goals as them. We share in the successes and the failures and learn from them. What went right or what went wrong?

We try to duplicate things that go right and reduce the investments that go wrong. It’s never perfect or even easy, and every day presents challenges, but we keep moving forward with the best information we have at the time to reach our goals of more success than losses. I also like to surround myself with successful people so I have resources to turn to when times are challenging.

Looking Forward

Throughout this interview, Joey Miller has articulated a clear vision of what it means to be a leader and a responsible investor in today’s fast-paced financial environment. His stories of personal challenges and professional triumphs underscore a career built on hard work, ethical integrity, and a relentless pursuit of knowledge.

Joey’s approach to blending personal values with professional acumen is a testament to the potent synergy that drives both individual and communal success. As we conclude our conversation, it is evident that Joey’s continued commitment to education, client relationships, and adaptive strategies remains as robust as ever, ensuring his ongoing influence and success in the investment industry.

Joey Miller Financial Planner Interview Success

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