Does the state or federal government owe you money?

You, your family members, and clients may have unclaimed money from a state or the federal government

It never ceases to amaze me which state or government owes me my own money!  The amazing part is that 95% of the time that I’ve found this money, I’m still living at the same address as stated on the unclaimed property file.

So, start the year off checking for your “found money”.

Even if you’ve lived at the same address for “a zillion years”, check the “missing money” websites for any state you’ve ever lived in.

Most of the money I’ve found is from insurance companies, health companies, electric companies and department stores – I’m perplexed as to why! I still live at the same address.

Happened this year again.   And yes, Google… I have not moved!

Every year, I also search on behalf of my relatives, friends, and clients.  Just today, I  sent 6 of them messages that a state is holding their money.

So far, no one has found more than a few hundred dollars… but that’s found money that can go to investments.  Every dollar does count!

Here’s the links to use and share:

All states:

Federal Gov:


Savings bonds   and


(c) 2016 Elevating Your Business,  Helping financial advisors simplify businesses so they can advise more and live a better life.  Are you a financial advisor?  Attend our free conference in January 2016 —


Found money?  Have a comment on this article?  Let us know below.


How advisors can earn more in 2016

There really are no magic bullets to growing a firm, but below are a few possible goals and strategies to get you started on the road to be more successful in 2016 than you were in 2015*.

A few goals to get you thinking about growing:

  • Increase the number of clients from ___ to _____ by ____(date).
  • Add ___ new paid services by ____ (date).
  • Increase the value of the average transaction per client from ____ to ____by ____(date).
  • Increase the number of transactions per client from ___ to ____by ____(date).
  • Decrease expenses from ___ to ____per client by ____(date).
  • Decrease the number of ways we market from ___ ways to ____ ways by ____(date).
  • Hire ___ new employees/contractors/outsourcers by ___ (date).

Here are some strategies to consider

  • Determne a better long-term business model (one that meets my personal goals) by _____(date).
  • Become known for _________________________________.
  • Hire ____ , ____ and ____.
  • Create _________, _______ and _______ for current our ideal clients and their friends.
  • Create a niche, ideal client system, and strategic/comprehensive plan to attract better prospects.
  • Conduct ____  trainings to update staff on industry trends, keep on top of new technology, and cross-train on various administrative duties.

Ok, we’ve given you a few ideas to get you started!

*If your practice currently doesn’t have a clearly defined niche, ideal client profile, clear visions (for 12 months, 5 years, and your exit)  and a stategic/comprehensive plan, chances are that IF you put these systems into place, you’ll grow faster.   That’s what we’ve seen our ideal clients do.

Now it’s up to you take some action and create the right goals and strategies for your firm. Let us help you successfully grow your firm.


Take a free business vision class:

Ask us for a free consultation and we’ll show you how we help our clients grow. Visit

The Power of Purpose, PBS Special

I came across this program on TV this week. I highly recommend that you watch it, too.

Even if you already know your purpose, the show will provide you with new insights.

Knowing your purpose is a major clarifier, you can use the information to up the ante or  change your life and business.

Being lifelong learners, as I’m sure you are too, I learned the importance of knowing what gifts, passions, and my calling were early on in life and yearly, during planning week, I revisit them. From time to time, I’ll add or even change some of my answers.

Don’t let this happen to you!

A car accident in 1994 pushed me into living my purpose;  helping people realize their dreams, even if it seems to them that there is no way they can happen. I truly believe that you CAN have it all — and sooner than you think!   If it’s really important, you’ll stop the excuses you tell yourself  and do whatever is necessary to “do it” –including reaching out for whatever help you could use.

When I changed careers, and started coaching school, I had to agree to participate in a 3-month program called “Personal Foundation” and delved deeply into, among 24 other life coaching topics, our purpose, gifts, and calling.

Life changes dramatically when you deeply know more about yourself! I can attest to that!

Today, my clients use the Personal Foundation as part of their personal and professional growth.  It’s true.  The more you know about you, the more you fashion your business model around the life you want to lead.  You see, the best business model is one that is designed around your passions, purpose, calling and gifts.
Learn more this PBS program at

Learn more about the Personal Foundation Program:
Rate the strength of 10 areas your personal foundation now: Go to

GRAMMARLY Recommendation


My colleague, Michael Hartzell, a marketer extraordinaire, at, and I were talking about a few business topics. Michael likes to stump me and throw website URLS at me to see if I know about the site already. Most often I do.

But this time he gave me, not only 1 site that I didn’t know (and should use) but two.
Michael knows me long enough to know that the “how to proofread” classes I took (3 or 4 in my lifetime so far) didn’t work. He knows that this area of life and business is a weakness of mine. (If you’ve been on my newsletter long enough, you know this, too.) I often hire proofreaders, editors, and marketers to help me. But sometimes I don’t care enough to pay for the help, or I want to get an article to my clients (or subscribers) fast, proofread it the best I can, and rightfully or wrongly, send it out as is.

Being a thought leading, idea, tips, problem-solving, planning, teaching, action taking efficiency person, I’m already “in” the next best idea (my strengths) once my thought or solution is written down.

So today I’ll share with you a simple and efficient app I purchased on Michael’s suggestion.

It’s called Grammarly, and it takes the spell-check program I use up a few levels. Grammarly offers a free, low-key option. However, knowing myself, I purchased the paid, yearly option because it comes with a Microsoft plugin, something I use in both Outlook and Word.
I used it to check the original edition of my newsletter, the one I write in MS Word, and it found 54 things for me to take a look at. I’ve read that the program is not perfect. But in my opinion, it’s a step up from just using MS by itself. It plugs itself into Outlook and Words, it has a Chrome plugin, too.
Now if t could only read my mind, and insert the words I meant to put into my articles, words I actually read but are not there, that would be even better!

The program does not work well with Outlook 2013. While there is a plugin download, the Word part of it works 100%. But the Outlook part removes features of Outlook mail that I feel is important. So I had to remove it. I hope they fix that 🙂

Use my affiliate link to learn more or to sign up for the free version at (my affiliate code)



Free Business Workshops for Financial Advisors

2016 Free Virtual Count on Success Summit for Registered Investment Advisors, Financial Advisors, and Planners  January 11-27

Financial industry experts will deliver 10 different sessions – with topics ranging from cybersecurity, automation and systematization of operations, marketing, social networking, human capital, and succession – at this year’s free Count on Success Summit.  The virtual summit features thought leaders from various practice management fields.  It will be held online from January 11-26, 2016.

“Because the event is held online, it’s a rare and affordable opportunity for advisors to learn how to grow or make improvements to their firms,” says Maria Marsala, Operations & Marketing Manager to Financial Advisors and the event’s organizer.  “Advisors can invite their teams to listen to the most relevant presentations and then take new and revitalized action in 2016.”

This year’s forward-thinking practice management speakers developed their topics expressly for registered investment advisors, financial planners, and wealth managers.  PFPs, insurance, and risk management professionals, as well as CPAs, accountants, bookkeepers and their teams, will also benefit from attending.

Virtual attendees will have 24 hours to listen to each speaker’s presentation and begin preparing new strategies to improve their firm and serve their clients’ needs in 2016.  Plus each speaker is providing a template or checklist to help the attendees take action on their topic.

“According to Google research, every 7 seconds, someone is online searching for information on a financial or insurance product.  But most advisors today don’t have the tools to reach them. This event will show advisors, among many other topics, how to position themselves as the obvious choice in a crowded market,” said Jeremiah Desmarais, TED speaker, and keynote for the event.

The Count on Success Summit provides a unique opportunity for RIAs and financial advisors to learn from respected practice management leaders without traveling. This is an excellent opportunity for advisors to sharpen their business, communications, marketing, and social networking skills from the comfort of their own offices.”

Session highlights from the 2016 Virtual Count on Success Summit will include

  • How to Turn LinkedIn into an Autopilot Lead Generation Machine
  • How to Confidently Turn Your Practice into a Business
  • How to Survive the Robo-Advisor Threat
  • How to Evaluate and Choose the Right Financial Platform Technology for Your Practice
  • How to Overcome the Buyer’s Bias Phenomenon
  • How to Gain More Street Cred by Engaging With Reporters
  • How to Avoid Regulatory Compliance Issues & Develop a Successful Succession Plan
  • How to Make Getting Great Referrals Easy
  • How to Use Strategic Business Alliances as a Marketing Strategy
  • And more…

For more information visit

Maria Marsala
(360) 271-8418

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