Written by Tim Mitchell
As a leading financial planning expert, P. Christopher Music has developed a methodology that will enable households to achieve an optimum financial condition.
Financial Prosperity Coach, P. Christopher Music, MBA, RFC, CWPP, CAPP, is the founder and President of Econologics Financial Advisors, a Registered Investment Advisory firm located in Clearwater, Florida. He is also the founder of Econologics Institute, his financial education company. For over two decades Music has evaluated the science of financial planning and has developed the next evolutionary phase of his industry in what he terms “Econologics.” Briefly described, Econologics is an innovative financial planning and wealth preservation system designed for private-practice professionals, but scalable to anyone who is motivated to obtain an optimum financial condition in their household in the most effective way possible. His firm is the exclusive provider of the Econologics Road Map™ and the Econologics financial planning methodology.
Graduating from Mount Union University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Administration, Music furthered his education at Kent State University where he earned an MBA. He began his financial planning career immediately after Graduate School working initially for an experienced financial planner. After only two months, Music decided to open his own practice and has operated independently ever since. He admits, “I struggled for the first couple of years until I figured out what I was doing, then things began getting progressively better.” Today he is a leading authority in financial planning strategy. He built a very successful practice in Ohio, eventually selling it to one of his business associates before moving to Florida to do business development consulting and open his current financial advisory firm. He now conducts educational seminars throughout the country and is insurance licensed in forty-eight states.
After a number of years as a practicing financial planner, Music realized that the generally-accepted approach to assisting clients in improving their financial condition wasn’t working. The market volatility, false information, unworkable techniques, and a lack of knowledge of the fundamentals created a general condition in the average household that predisposes it to economic disasters and potentially unrecoverable financial losses. This prompted him to take action, developing his innovative financial planning and wealth preservation system. He created this methodology of financial planning beginning with the result—a standard and measurable state of financial success that should be experienced when engaging the services of a professional financial advisor. From this viewpoint, he discovered that every household’s financial condition is summed up in 9 elements and that each of these elements must approach its ideal state for the overall financial condition of the household to be optimized.
Music explains the term “Econologics,” “If you look at the word ‘economy’ in the ancient Greek, it means ‘management of a household.’ ‘–logy’ means ‘study of’ and ‘-ikos’ means ‘practices or skills.’ So, ‘Econologics’ is literally ‘the study of the practices and skills of the financial management of the household.’ I coined that word to differentiate the type of financial planning I do as distinguished from the financial planning done by others. The basics of Econologics defines that there is a predictable, consistent, objectively measurable result that someone would achieve in doing the Econologics financial planning process. It is a well-defined Optimum Financial Condition. Econologics takes nine elements of a person’s financial life and defines what the ideal state would be in each of those nine areas to focus primarily on creating an income, being intelligent about how we spend our money, and protecting ourselves from losses so that one’s financial goals can be achieved without going backwards.”
Music continues, “The ‘client’ has never really been defined by the financial community. The client is the household. The household is the senior entity, or parent company, to every other asset that household owns, whether it’s a small business, a retirement plan, real estate, or bank accounts. So, obviously you will want to manage those assets like a company would manage assets they own to maximize profits and minimize risk. The ultimate goal of Econologics is to continually have the household be in an updated and optimal state of operation.”
Music has created a three-day workshop called, The Econologics Financial Prosperity Course – The Ultimate Guide for the Household CFO®, designed for husbands and wives to attend to learn everything they need to know to competently manage their financial affairs. In this seminar, he walks his clients through the nine step process he has developed.
The first of the nine steps is, “Have a Written Financial Plan.” According to Music, having a financial plan in writing is of utmost importance and cannot be overemphasized.
The second step is “Policies and Procedures.” Policies are basic rules and any business must have a policies and procedures manual. This creates an avenue for agreement as to how things are going to be done and establishes the forward actions that will be taken to achieve the goal. For example, it’s impossible to play baseball without first fully understanding the rules, learning how to hold the bat, and learning how to catch and throw the ball. In a similar way, there is no way a person can oversee their finances if they have no idea of the policies and procedures of the household financial plan.
Step three is “Business Viability.” Music works primarily with business owners because they have direct control over their income. However, Econologics also works for non-business owner households. The idea of business viability is to maximize the income coming into the household. It is also focused on “human capital,” which is the collection of ability, training and experience enabling one to perform labor so as to produce economic value. Music contends this is a part of the financial planning process that has been completely omitted by the industry; the procedures to make more money. He teaches his clients that the way to do that is to create more profitability through proper training and having the experience to get results. He says, “If you are able to get results, you can get paid more.”
The fourth step is “Income Assurance.” Eventually, a person should be able to receive income without having to trade their time and expertise. To do that, individuals must save money to be able to create a store of assets that can be converted to a guaranteed lifetime income at some point in the future.
Fifth is “Debt and Credit.” The idea is to become debt free and have excellent credit. Music teaches his clients how to become debt free as quickly as possible as well as how to lower interest costs and improve their credit. Additionally, there are specific rules related to borrowing that he includes as part of the educational experience.
The sixth step is “Estate Planning.” Music teaches the need to have all your legal rudiments in place to take care of you and your loved ones if you die or become incapacitated.
The seventh is “Tax Planning.” Music has found that many people pay too much in taxes and he shows his clients how to mitigate taxes as much as possible compared to the level of their household income.
Eighth is “Asset Protection.” Music states, “There are 87 different risks a business owner’s household takes every day when they are trying to manage their assets and achieve their financial goals. The problem is they have never been fully exposed and specifically addressed until now, so losses occur.” He identifies these risks for his clients and discusses available alternatives to protect their assets.
The ninth and final step is “Investments.” “Investments are discussed last because the proper structure has to be in place before thinking about investing money for the future,” Music explains. “People take a lot more risk than they need to in order to achieve return on their investments. Individuals need to have a well thought-out written investment policy for their household assets before they invest.”
He continues, “The ultimate financial condition is achieving a measurable ideal state by completing each of the nine elements. It is extremely important that the nine elements be done in sequence. People experience problems because they don’t do all these steps, or they do them out of sequence, or worse, in reverse sequence.”
Music believes his Econologics methodology is a next step in the evolution of financial planning. He explains, “If you look at the history of financial planning, in 1969 financial advisors began helping people start to set aside money by developing a long term strategic financial plan. In 1983 the International Association for Financial Planning (IAFP) determined they needed to refine the financial planning process and launched a six-step process, which is the basic premise to which every financial planner subscribes today. However, it has become abundantly clear in the financial planning profession that much is still lacking in the evolution of this particular industry. Econologics seeks to be the third generation of financial planning technology because it takes into consideration all of the omissions and all of the alterations limiting the current form of financial planning —it is a much more comprehensive and effective system. The end result of financial planning should be an improved household financial condition, not a sold insurance policy or mutual fund. Econologics is intended to ‘evolutionize’ the industry toward a higher standard of activity and results.”
At Econologics Financial Advisors financial planning firm, they have a very standardized process and they don’t vary from it at all. Music says, “I require every one of my clients to attend our three-day workshop because they need to have a full understanding of why and how they are doing what they are doing. Financial planning for most is not successful because they are not knowledgeable about the subject. They rely solely on their advisor as opposed to working as a partner with their advisor. The only way they can be successful in their financial planning is to have comparable education levels on the subject. I’m not asking them to become an expert, but they have to understand what they are doing.”
For the past twenty years Music has listened to anyone that had anything to say about the subject of financial planning and creating financial prosperity and has sorted through all of it to develop the Econologics methodology. Music relates, “I spent a million dollars out of my own pocket and twenty years of research to find these answers. I’ve summarized all of this in five days of lectures and will be putting a lot of information in several books that will be published. It bothers me that people work very hard to provide for the goals and dreams of their family only to have much of that wealth taken away due to bad advice and other factors. It doesn’t need to be that way. Because I’ve figured it out for myself, I feel it’s my responsibility to share this with anyone who will listen.”
Music conducts his seminars all over the country and has clients throughout the United States, from Hawaii to Maine. He also capitalizes on the Internet as much as possible, using collaborative online meetings and various online software programs that will create analysis reports and graphics for his clients. His clients are given online access to a client only portal that is an interactive interface where they can access educational videos, online courses, books, and more.
“No matter what financial condition you are in,” Music conveys, “whether good or bad, you can use something from Econologics to improve your situation. Most of my clients are business owners or professionals in private practice who have purpose and desire to be affluent. I learned a long time ago, it’s much easier to take a person that’s motivated and direct them than to try to motivate somebody. I want to work with people that are motivated to improve their financial position in life. I don’t care what condition they are in now, if they have that motivation, I will show them how to do it, but it’s going to take dedication and motivation on their part to follow the path.”
Music and his firm currently work with business owners predominately in the healthcare field. Their four vertical markets presently include dentists, veterinarians, optometrists, and physical therapists. While, right now, they deliver the Econologics system to only their clients, starting next year they will be providing partnerships with other financial professionals who want to affiliate with their firm to use this proven and effective system.
Recently, Music has rolled out his Financial Success Guides for professionals in the healthcare community, which are available in print on Amazon or in e-book format on his website. He is a contributing author to the upcoming book, More.Better, in which he penned the chapter, How to Become a Millionaire in Private Practice. He is also authoring another book, Results-Based Financial Planning – An Introduction to Econologics. In addition to conducting his quarterly Econologics Seminars, he is often called on to speak for various business associations. His writings have been published in the American Physical Therapist Association’s Impact Magazine, Boomer Lifestyle Living, busymoms.com, and he has written over 50 articles which have been posted on various internet sites. He has been quoted in the Tampa Bay Business Journal and has been asked recently to be a contributing writer for the American Mergers and Acquisitions Association.
Because of his contribution to his industry and his outstanding business success, Music is being featured on The Brian Tracy Show which will be seen on ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox affiliates in upcoming months. He has also been named one of America’s Business Champions in Newsweek Magazine. Additional information about Music, Econologics Financial Advisors, and Econologics Institute can be found at www.econologics.com or www.pchristophermusic.com