For five years, Elizabeth Herzog taught third grade. It was a career that she excelled at because she enjoyed connecting with people, building relationships and explaining things to others in a way that made sense. Nevertheless, she knew that she didn’t want to stay in the classroom forever. She went back to school and earned a master’s degree in educational leadership with the goal of becoming a principal, but ultimately that career didn’t align with her life plan, either. In December 2019, while job surfing online, she came across a listing with Northwestern Mutual (NM) that was geared toward career changers.
“They wanted someone who had experience in a career and who was coachable,” says Herzog. “It was exactly what I was looking for as I’ve always had a personal financial planner and my family had always put an emphasis on financial security. It seemed like a natural fit.”
She began working with the company in June 2020.
“I think coming into this career during the middle of a pandemic was the perfect time because people are realizing now, more than ever, how important financial security really is, so I feel like they are more open to having a conversation around financial planning,” Herzog says. “Also, the convenience of meeting virtually is nice. I have clients all over the country because everyone can just hop on the computer and connect.”
Herzog’s primary objective when connecting with people is simply to be a resource and provide education and information.
“My goal isn’t to get them to sign up as a client. That’s the biggest misconception,” says Herzog. “I just want people to know what I know. I want them to know what’s possible.”
Herzog enjoys talking to anyone in any career or monetary bracket, though she is especially passionate about connecting with educators and young female professionals.
“I want to be a face and a resource for women to reach out and feel comfortable talking about and taking ownership of their finances and feeling it’s their role to do so, whether they’re single or married,” says Herzog, who recognizes that men and women feel differently about finances.
“Men are a lot more mathematical. They want to see the numbers whereas women go off emotions — How does it make them feel? Do they feel comfortable doing this? Does it make sense to them? It doesn’t matter what the numbers are necessarily.”
When Herzog first started in this business, she struggled with learning to be her own boss and setting her own hours because she was used to a more traditional work lifestyle. She had to achieve a good work/life balance and not work around the clock. Now she has developed a calendar that enables her to be most productive with her time, working evenings twice a week.
“I learned to value my personal time as well as give my clients the time that they need. I had to remind myself that I’m helping people with their dreams and in the meantime, I’m living mine as well,” says Herzog.
In 2020, Herzog made company history by crushing all benchmarks and milestones and being nominated for New Advisor of the Year after working at NM for just six months.
“There have been a lot of learning curves as there would be with any new adventure, but I’m excited!” says Herzog, whose future goals include getting into leadership and mentoring a team of financial advisors within the office.
“That’s where my natural ability lies. I want to continue to build my happiness while allowing my clients to find the happiness they are seeking.”
For more information on Northwestern Mutual, call 513.366.3600 or visit Cincinnati.nm.com.