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NAIFA Vermont Featured Member Profile: Chris Cain

Chris Cain, Cain Associates Financial GroupChris Cain, Cain Associates Financial Group

7 Kilburn Street, Suite 320
Burlington, VT 05401
[email protected]
802-863-5584

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“I would never in a million years have grown without NAIFA.”

Chris Cain is the owner of Cain Associates Financial Group. He’s been a member of NAIFA Vermont for 48 years – the entirety of his career in the financial services industry.

He’s also been married to his wife Judy for 48 years, and they have three children: Matt (who works with him at Cain Associates), Kristin, and Lindsey, and five grandchildren. He’s always been an active person and enjoys downhill skiing, golf, and boating, and is a 9-time Vermont state handball champion. He’s a member of Holy Cross Church and the Burlington Country Club, and a 41-year member of the Million Dollar Round Table. He is a strong believer in the importance of balance in life: be good at business, be good at home and with your family, have a spiritual background, be physically fit, be good in your community, and don’t focus too much on one area of life to the exclusion of others. This “Whole Person Model” has helped him create a fulfilling life and career for himself over the last 40+ years.

Speaking of his NAIFA Vermont membership, Cain tells us “it’s probably one of the earliest, best decisions I ever could have made.” At the time, his employer told him it was a requirement, and paying the dues was a bit of a challenge for someone just starting out, but he’s valued the investment made in NAIFA membership ever since.

Chris started his career in financial services on the life insurance side of the business in 1973. He has grown from that beginning to offering a full range of financial services, including retirement and financial planning, as well as other insurance services beyond life and disability. He’s done well for himself and his clients over the course of his career, and he’ll readily tell you that his NAIFA membership played a role in that success.

Relationships are incredibly important in the financial planning and insurance business. Any advisor will tell you they need to have good relationships with their clients in order to offer them the best possible advice and assistance. It’s also important for advisors to have strong peer and mentor relationships to perform well for their clients and themselves. These relationships are at the core of NAIFA’s benefits for its members. “It brings you in touch with other people, other systems, other ideas, people who are at the time producing more than you, so you learn from people above you and better than you and smarter than you. You can’t just get that out of your own agency.” Chris recalls a time when he was starting out and struggling to make sales like any young professional. He learned that the “real heroes” in the industry were all NAIFA members - and that they were willing to be role models and mentors to help him get better at his job. NAIFA provided him the opportunity to interact with people with greater experience and success, and to learn from them to grow his own skill set and business.

Even when his career began to take off, he still found learning opportunities within his NAIFA membership and relationships. At one point he was a top producer within his company, but he knew he wanted to get better, to get to the next level, and his membership in NAIFA facilitated that through relationships and educational opportunities on the local and national level.

He’s also found enormous benefit from serving as NAIFA Vermont president, as a national committeeman, and attending NAIFA national conventions. “It just opens up your world. You do it for unselfish reasons, but you end up gaining a lot of information, a lot of knowledge, a lot of ideas you wouldn’t have thought of on your own.”

Now, as a financial advisor with 48 years of experience, Chris is “climbing down the mountain,” as he puts it, but has no plans to stop working. For him, it’s not really work any more. At this point in his career, he’s mainly working with longtime clients and enjoying the fruition of a job well done: helping with distribution instead of accumulation and seeing his clients enjoy a comfortable retirement.

His advice to younger members of the financial services industry is to take advantage of all of the benefits offered by professional organizations like NAIFA and try to find a mentor who can help you increase your knowledge, ability, and success. Find someone you can ask questions, who you can watch and learn from: what do they do that you don’t, and how do they do it? Chris is welcoming of any young NAIFA members who approach him to talk about ideas. He fondly remembers the older members who gave generously of their time and expertise, and how much it helped him. “I’d be more than happy to meet and spend time with any young NAIFA member, and even the older ones, because I do think I have information and ideas that would help them grow in what they’re doing.”

“You are not going to be quite what you would be if you don’t have other people lifting you up.”

 

Christopher Cain
Cain Associates Financial Group
7 Kilburn Street, Suite 320
Burlington, VT 05401
[email protected]
802-863-5584

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