A Chamber member since 2011,  Patrick J. Cloutier with Legacy Planning Group shares his insight on business and being a member of the McKinney Chamber of Commerce.

Who are you and what is the name of your business?

My name is Patrick J. Cloutier and I am a Financial Advisor at Legacy Planning Group.

I work alongside Matthew B. Gournay, Financial Advisor, and my daughter, Madeleine M. Cloutier, our Customer Relationship Manager and Marketing Director.

What inspired you to start your business?

I love the independence this business offers and having the chance to work with people I like. My main inspiration, however, is the opportunity to help bring people peace through financial confidence.

What services or products do you offer?

Legacy Planning Group is an independent financial services firm. Our customized programs are designed to help grow, protect, and conserve our clients’ wealth by delivering personalized service and high-level expertise.

Among the many services we offer, we specialize in the following: financial, estate, college, and retirement planning; restructuring life insurance policies; and helping small to midsize companies implement 401Ks. We are also starting to offer quarterly workshops and seminars that go over investment and retirement basics – so stay tuned! Seminar time/date information will be displayed on our website.

What is unique about your business?

Legacy Planning Group is not your run-of-the-mill financial planning firm — we do things differently. Legacy Planning Group was founded with the goal of assisting our clients and their families in every aspect of their financial and personal lives. For each of our clients, we strive to help create financial stability, security, and independence while building a strong relationship based on trust and open communication. As a fiduciary and a friend, it is our obligation and our top priority to help you take care of yourself and your family.

How does your business give back to the community?

Our team at Legacy Planning Group devotes countless hours to serving others and volunteering within the community to help make McKinney a better place for us all.

I serve on the Board of Grace to Grow, the Leadership McKinney Alumni Committee, and the McKinney Zoning Board of Adjustments. Previously, I served as chair of Volunteer McKinney.

My colleague Matt is serving his second elected term as a trustee for the Lovejoy Independent School Board. His past volunteerism includes secretary and board member of Rebuilding Together Collin County, Finance Chairman for Creekwood United Methodist Church, and lifetime member of Lovejoy Schools PTA.

What obstacles did you have to overcome to get where are today?

I founded Legacy Planning Group more than 18 years ago in historic Downtown McKinney. Getting started in this business as a young man wasn’t easy: People are more inclined to trust grey hair and reading glasses, something I didn’t earn until I was about 41. Additionally, the income wasn’t always stable, which was especially challenging as I supported my family and put my three daughters through school.

What methods have you used to grow your business?

We tell our happy clients that introductions are the best compliment we can receive. Referrals are always appreciated and have taken us far.

What is the secret to keeping happy customers?

We put our clients’ needs and interests first in every decision that we make.

Who has been your greatest inspiration?

My greatest inspiration has been my wife, Vonda. Vonda is a remarkable wife and mother. She loved being home with our girls, and I’m thankful that my position with Legacy Planning Group has enabled her to be such a constant in their lives.

What is your most/least favorite thing about your business?

My favorite thing is the independence; this job enables me to have my own time and manage my own schedule. My least favorite is that because we are a highly regulated business, sometimes we’re forced to comply with rules and jump through the hoops that can also make things unnecessarily difficult for both us and our clients.

Where do you see your business going in the future?

My goal is to keep growing the number of people we serve. I don’t think I will ever fully retire, but eventually, I hope to see my daughter Madeleine become seasoned steward of our clients’ goals.

To what do you attribute your success?

Building long-term relationships that encourage open and honest communication have been the cornerstone of our success. Our main priority is helping you take care of yourself and your family. We want to learn more about your personal situation, identify your dreams and goals, and understand your tolerance for risk.

How are you involved in the chamber and what is the effect on your business?

Legacy Planning Group has been a member of the McKinney Chamber of Commerce since 2011. Madeleine is a volunteer ambassador as well as a member of Woman’s Alliance of McKinney and McKinney Young Professionals.

By being involved in the chamber, we’re able to reap the benefits of serving our business community while building social networks that support our business in return.

What’s the best advice you would give a new chamber member to get the most out of their membership?

No matter what stage of business you are in, building relationships is crucial. Connecting with people is an enormous benefit of having a chamber membership. Members learn business tips and skills and have access to a breadth of knowledge from their co-members. Participating in the many different programs and benefits provided through the chamber is crucial to taking advantage of these networking opportunities.