Member Success Story: The Winning “Playbook” for Retirement

a table showing the impact on finances before and after working with a money coach: 9.25 financial well-being score versus 9.875; working with a coach for 0 days versus 270 days; incomplete action plan for retirement versus complete and improved; cloudy outlook on retirement versus confident

Employees face a formidable opponent: retirement.  With time ticking away and the scoreboard showing little to no savings, two-thirds of employees are seriously worried about winning the financial future they desire.1  Gilbert, like many of his peers, needed a “playbook” for long term retirement planning, so he reached out to the MSA Financial Wellness program for direction.

Gilbert was immediately matched with Rick – a MSA Money Coach and retirement specialist.  Training began and covered all the strategies Gilbert was unsure about:  “This included a large variety of retirement topics: health care costs, long-term care and life insurance, investing to beat inflation, creating an income stream from savings, maximizing social security benefits, and several others.”  With Rick’s guidance, Gilbert learned the “plays” he needed to make in order to up the score – to increase retirement funds.

Throughout their time together, Rick and Gilbert talked about anything and everything Gilbert would need to know for achieving a financially secure retirement.  They set up an action plan concerning how to access distributions, which accounts to use first, which ones to save for later, and how to rebalance savings and income along the way.  Rick coached him on other topics too:

  • They discussed target date funds, annuities, Medicare, life insurance, and Long Term Care policies.
  • Rick showed Gilbert how to evaluate the cost of coverage and compare the different types of insurance.
  • Gilbert mulled over the idea of moving after retirement, and Rick helped him investigate where to go, what the tax implications would be, and more.

Gilbert had this to say about working with Rick:  “We had a number of sessions and covered every topic I had in detail….  Rick was thoughtful about responses to my questions, flexible in addressing a wide range of topics, and willing to research and reach out to colleagues to collect additional information to help dive deeper into my inquiries.”

MSA members have all different levels of financial skills, and our coaches make sure to meet each member at his or her level and help them grow from there.  With Gilbert it was no different.  He said, “[My Money Coach] adjusted his feedback based on the level of understanding I already had about the topics.”  Gilbert went on to say that “Rick also keep the discussions interesting and entertaining.”  Rick went above and beyond to make sure that Gilbert’s experience with MSA was helpful and fun, and he made sure that no stone was left unturned.

Gilbert came with questions and uncertainty about how his retirement would play out.  Through one-on-one consultations, Gilbert and his Money Coach covered a multitude of options, answered questions, and created a game plan, so Gilbert had a step-by-step approach for enjoying his retirement and remaining confident that his finances would last as long as he needed.  In Gilbert’s words, he gained “a better understanding of options/preferences and an improved game plan.”

Gilbert entered the program with little financial stress (9.25/10), and even then, after working with a Money Coach, he improved his score by 6.5% (9.875/10).  There is always room to improve your finances, even when you’re ahead of the game.

Only a third of employees think they’re financially set for retirement,1  which leaves plenty of employees who are dropping the ball or sitting on the sidelines with little to no retirement savings.  Are you one of them?  A Money Coach can train you on how to achieve short-term and long-term financial goals/challenges, so you can be financially victorious.

You can succeed just like Gilbert with the MSA Financial Wellness program.  Get your very own winning playbook by calling MSA today at 888-724-2326.

The Snapshot of Success
Gilbert's-Snapshot-of-Success

1The Principal Financial Well Being Index℠: American Workers.  Des Moines, IA: Principal Financial Group, 2013.  PDF.