Hiring For Good – Profiles in Leadership is joined by Alice Tang ChFC, MIM, Vice President and Partner at BPG Wealth Management

Profiles in Leadership

The Profiles in Leadership series features conversations with organizational leadership experts to discuss important lessons they have learned and what “Hiring for Good” means to them. This series helps us better understand the role leadership plays in positive transformations and growth for people, organizations, and the world we live in. 

This episode features a conversation with Alice Tang ChFC, MIM, Vice President and Partner at BPG Wealth Management, a full-service multi-generational financial planning firm in Oregon. Alice has built her business and success by creating and deepening relationships one connection at a time.

As an immigrant to the U.S. who restarted her career and built her network from the ground up, Alice understands the roller coaster of money management. After mastering money herself, Alice shows others how to take charge and reduce stress over money. She has become a Life Member and Top of the Table Qualifier at Million Dollar Round Table, a professional member of the National Speakers Association, and is a 2023 Portland Business Journal’s Woman of Influence Award Winner.

Her passion is to help others take decisive action toward building their desired future, which led her to create her latest project, “Women’s Million Dollar Conversations,” an interview series featuring leading women who have accumulated, earned, or sold over a million dollars to discuss their insights, experiences, and tips on how they achieved their goals so that audiences can expand their vision and turn dreams into reality.

“ As an advocate for women’s financial independence, I believe that the value of money gives us freedom of choice. My dad says best: “If money can solve it, it’s not a problem.” As we accumulate wealth, we become more resilient and can weather life’s challenges, watching the storms pass rather than being caught up in them….”

 Alice Tang ChFC, MIM, BPG Wealth Management

Alice’s Contact Information: 503-341-1088 |  alice@bpgnetwork.com | www.bpgnetwork.com

Disclosure:

BPG Wealth Management Tel: (503) 654-7676 | Fax: (503) 653-7575 |www.bpgnetwork.com | 10151 SE Sunnyside Rd, Suite 460, Clackamas OR 97015.

Securities and investment advisory services offered through Osaic Wealth, Inc. member FINRA/SIPC. Osaic Wealth is separately owned and other entities and/or marketing names, products or services referenced here are independent of Osaic Wealth.

Profiles in Leadership Transcript:

Suzanne Hanifin: Well, good morning! This is Suzanne Hanifin with Acumen Executive Search, and I am with a dear friend of mine, Ms. Alice Tang from BPG Wealth Management. Alice is a partner there and has a long tenure, and I’m so, so excited to have you here this morning. Thank you, Alice.

Alice Tang:Yes, hi Suzanne. I’m so grateful for this opportunity to wake up and see you as the first person I see this morning.

Suzanne Hanifin: Well, and you know, it was very interesting because you are our go-to person when it comes to our internal 401(k). I know a number of us at Acumen use you for our retirement planning and what have you. You have a really interesting focus. You’ve been doing this a long time, but your emphasis has been on women and businesswomen. How did you find this niche?

Alice Tang: When I first came to this country, I’m talking about 30 years ago—we have two kids, now grown and graduated from college and MBA—it was a long while ago. I was on a dependent and a work visa. Given the level of energy I have now at 60, back then I was only 30 years old. Imagine an extroverted woman who couldn’t work; it was really hard. It was the women around me who barely knew me, at church, at aerobics class, in my neighborhood. They were Intel executives, and they invited me to anything, including water gun fights with their three-year-old kids. I participated, and that helped me get through life, kill time, and finally find myself. And, of course, my mom, who has been very careful in putting money away, made a lot of difference in our family’s finances. She inspired me to focus on women.

Suzanne Hanifin: Well, that’s the perfect segue to my first question. The more I talk to leaders and dive into hiring for good, I find that nobody’s career has been a straight line. We’ve all taken lefts and rights, but there have been formative leadership experiences that you have learned from over the years. Can you share with us some of those formative, impactful experiences?

Alice Tang: I’m talking about someone behind him, so I hope he is okay. His name is Jeff Owens. I met Jeff twenty-four years ago when I first started in the business. We didn’t become partners until about two decades ago. After an interview that I thought went great, we were looking at about eleven million dollars of 401(k) money. But we both looked at each other afterwards and said we wouldn’t touch it with a twelve-foot pole because something was up. So I thought, well, he wasted or invested time in me for an hour; I would like to at least do the minimum, at least take him to coffee at Starbucks. When we sat down after I put the coffee on the table because it’s my treat, imagine that, he said, Alice, I would like you to consider being my partner.

Suzanne Hanifin: Wow, that is amazing to take that leap of faith. And you said you were four years into…

Alice Tang: Four years into, I mean, four or five years into the deal. So first reaction, Suzanne, you know what my personality is like—yay. I can’t laugh too hard, but it’s like, oh, really? I am honored. I did say something I shouldn’t have said because this is like, you know, the gold mine, the lamb on your lap, or a very wonderful wrapped gift on my lap. I said, let me think about it. How dare I? But I did think about it for nine months. You didn’t know this part. I think it’s the lack of trust in me, something to do with my self-worth, how I look at myself. I felt that maybe I’m not matching up to his level; he’s like a top producer, I’m like a new newbie right here. So I thought, I gave myself the excuse, well, if I started and it didn’t work out, I would have ruined a friendship or a mentorship. He has been a mentor to me. So you know how excited I am getting to know people, and relationship is a big deal in my life. So I put those up as excuses for not making the decision.

Suzanne Hanifin: Wow.

Alice Tang: Finally, he didn’t give up in nine months, kept touching base, just like any prospect, right? If you are a good businessperson, you’re good in sales, you won’t give up until somebody gives you a flat no. One day I met with someone like a consultant, I’ve never met him again. He wanted to give me an example of how to help people to resolve issues. So because he had no strings attached, he didn’t know Jack nor me, so I told him about what I was dealing with, and he said, why didn’t you pray for a no? You’ve been praying for a yes all the way; you can make a decision. So I did pray for a no. What does no mean to me? I need to define it, there should be a very bad weather day, the plane must crash, okay, a war just broke. All these, so it was a beautiful, calm day. The next day I called Jack and I said, I made a decision, I’m coming. And then he said, what changed? And I said, God was with me telling me to. The rest is history. So which part of it has really inspired me to be a better leader is when you see somebody who has potential, you don’t give up. They may need their time and their space. Just have faith in the process and it will be taken care of.

Suzanne Hanifin: Wow, Alice, that’s beautiful. And it’s something to remember and again, what a perfect segue kind of into our next question. You know, as a business partner and an owner, you employ a lot of different people over the years, 20 years in your practice. What values do you hold personally that not only have you incorporated into your organization but bigger…

Alice Tang: You know, financial freedom for women is my big thing because I believe that if women are in charge of their money and feel confident and independent, the community will be better. Because we’re making a lot of decisions anyway, financial decisions in particular that I’m talking about. So two values I have are instilling hope and setting free.

Suzanne Hanifin: And setting free?

Alice Tang: Most people who come to us, whether they have this much money or this much money, they’re trying to get there. There is a syndrome, I call it, fearful about not having enough. And actually by taking people through the process, showing them the path, and what they are doing is right or what they need to do in addition to what they have done right currently, is going to get them to their finish line and beyond. It is an important hope building process. We’re building hope because you don’t know the end result 10 years ago, but if we can make them focus on doing this, exactly what you need to do month in, month out, you’re going to get there. So they can let go of the hiccups of looking at the future but know what you can do in control today. That’s instilling hope. Setting free is naturally you feel less worried about money, so we live happier, our shoulders lighter.

Suzanne Hanifin: Wow, that is empowering and inspiring. Thank you for sharing that, Alice. You know, and then you’ve built your teams. How do you go about again building this culture of inspiring hope, setting free with the day-to-day and who you hire?

Alice Tang: Wow, that’s a big question. Actually, we should refer to the expert, Acumen Executive Search, but we will tell you what we do and so far it worked. Any hire, when we hire, I think Jeff said this, it’s not me. This is the third-generation company because his uncle started in the business and then he looked at his uncle and felt that this is the right thing to do, then bought the practice and here we are, third generation. So he said, anytime when we hire somebody, we want to make sure that we can be with this person for as long as the person wants to be with us. So in other words, it’s a long-term relationship. It’s not hiring, you know, somebody just to, you know, fix this. So that’s super important. And the second is, everybody makes mistakes. And the first thing he taught me when we first started is, and of course mistakes happen, is that remember, Alice, you and my name is on the door. Whoever in our team makes a mistake, it’s our mistake. So we will step forward and handle it. Instead of like, so-and-so did it, I’m here to pick up the mess. No, we made a mistake. The company made a mistake. We’re going to fix it. Or the company did well, it’s because of the team. Now get them on the stage, we’re behind them.

Suzanne Hanifin: I love that. And you know, it’s so interesting. I was speaking with, oh, I can’t remember who, but I truly believe that one of the best qualities and values that a leader can bring in is humility. And you just highlighted it perfectly right there in that example, that it’s not about you or about them. It’s about the kind of the greater good and how do we lift up. Again, very, very nice. So I would be remiss if I didn’t ask you this question, Alice, but this is the Hiring for Good podcast. So what does hiring for good mean for you?

Alice Tang: For us, BPG Wealth Management, I think it’s about the legacy. You saw, you heard that three generations, and you saw all of us and you knew all of us because you are coming to our parties. When we hire someone, we are just wanting to have the person be able to add to the culture and the legacy that we have built. And people come and people might go for their own reason or different reason, move out of the state, we can’t help it, right? But the point we’re trying to make is we have a legacy we’re building for BPG Wealth Management. And because of the good things we do, we hope that the community becomes a better community because a lot of things are entangled with money. If you can sort out money, make it simple, doable, achievable, people are not as crazy as today.

Suzanne Hanifin: Yeah, absolutely. So Alice, I’ll give you a little bit of time to kind of tell me who your ideal client is and why are they your ideal client?

Alice Tang: You know, because we have four lead advisors in the office, everyone is specializing in a special area, as you probably noticed. I will only tell mine, right? Who is attracting to me as an ideal client? People who are attracted to me are brilliant, high-achiever females who are either top executives or business owners like Suzanne Hanifin, who is brilliant enough to manage acumens finances only if they have time. But they don’t, because they’re doing what they’re do very well, so they need to hire an expert to help them. And we love to be there to give them the help, the support, and the ideas and tell them where the blind spot is. And we work closely with their other team, their legal advisor and their tax advisor, so that we are not missing a bit when the world and the rules and the laws are changing so frequently.

Suzanne Hanifin: No, and I appreciate you, Alice, I really do. Because I think it is that partnership that we’ve always been able to do business and be good friends at the same time because of the transparency and the honesty. So I appreciate you today, and thank you so much, Alice. Your insights were invaluable. Again, what I took away from this was inspiring, you know, setting things up right so you can have freedom down the road.

Alice Tang: That’s right, that’s right. Well, thank you, Suzanne. I appreciate this opportunity to share things that you already know because we’ve known each other for many years, we have had many drinks, and many conversations. Thank you so much. I’m grateful for you and your team and what you did well and hiring for many companies.

Suzanne Hanifin: Aw, thank you. Alright, bye-bye.

Alice Tang: Thank you, Suzanne.

Disclosure: BPG Wealth Management Tel: (503) 654-7676 | Fax: (503) 653-7575 |www.bpgnetwork.com | 10151 SE Sunnyside Rd, Suite 460, Clackamas OR 97015.

Securities and investment advisory services offered through Osaic Wealth, Inc. member FINRA/SIPC. Osaic Wealth is separately owned and other entities and/or marketing names, products or services referenced here are independent of Osaic Wealth.