As a retired financial planner and investment advisor who worked in the financial services industry from 1991 to 2002, this is one of the best and most incredible stories about success I could tell you. In the heart of full disclosure, I have the privilege of coaching and being a great friend to the man I’m about to tell you about, and his name is Jac Arbour.
The Legendary Leadership Event
Once upon a time a couple of years ago, I worked with a very famous man most of you reading this article may have never heard of; Harvey Mackay. Harvey is a seven-time New York Times bestselling author who hails from Minneapolis, Minnesota. During his heyday in the 1990s, Harvey was like a king of the free world. He traveled the word by private jet speaking to Fortune 1000 companies for over 30 years. If you were to meet Harvey today, you would see one of the most legendary leaders the world has ever seen. Harvey and I worked together for a little over a year during which I helped him build his online academy at www.HarveyMackayAcademy.com. You can also hear the podcasts I created for the academy if you search “Harvey Mackay’s Street Smarts.”
The story I’m here to tell you is not about Harvey. The reason I share Harvey’s name is that he’s not only legendary, but he gets all the credit for helping me meet Jac Arbour, the young man who lives in Augusta, Maine. Jac is one of dozens of successful business owners who paid $10,000 for a three-day event Harvey and I hosted in November 2018. I created the event to help “legendary leaders” become even better leaders who could make a positive impact on the world. Amid the celebrity cast assembled by Harvey to speak at the event, there was Jac Arbour standing 6’ 6” inches seated in the middle of the room, and every time you saw Jac, he wore the biggest, most-genuine smile in the room.
Our First Encounter
To be honest, I didn’t notice Jac at first because I was busy doing my job; host the event and make sure our special guests had the time of their life networking with the rich and famous cast assembled for the three-day event. It was at the first day’s lunch at the former Ritz Carlton in Phoenix, Arizona that I fell in love with Jac, and our friendship began.
I was eating lunch at a table on the rooftop of the hotel when Jac sat down and said, “Hi, I’m Jac Arbour. I haven’t met you yet, but I want to tell you this event is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!” And that’s when our friendship began. Jac learned that I was a retired financial advisor even though he didn’t know the tragic ending to my career in that industry.
Everything Jac does including smile, walk, talk, speak, publish, and live a rich life is B-I-G, hence the emphasis on the energy I felt when I first met Jac. Immediately, Jac struck me as the happiest guy I’d ever met. It would be over the next couple of years I’d learn most of the hows and whys Jac has become so successful and such a young age, relative to most of us.
After the event ended, Jac flew home to Maine, and our friendship continued to grow. We stayed in constant contact and when the project with Harvey ended, I was back to coaching CEO’s, small business owners, and successful corporate executives in the art of strategic planning and what I call the “inner game” of leadership and being a great human being.
How Jac Got Wealthy While He’s Young
Jac got out of the rat race in his early thirties by doing what most of know we should, but don’t do; make money and develop the discipline to save and invest it at a young age. Jac dodged the bullet most of us take in life when we live beyond our means. It’s true most of us buy stuff we don’t need and can’t afford. Then, we wonder why we’re working too hard in jobs that kill us from the stress and anxiety of doing meaningless work that has nothing to do with our gifts, passions, or true purpose in life.
Making and saving money may seem like an obvious way to get rich, but there’s more to the story. How do you find work that gives you joy and income? You discover your purpose early in life, then you go for it with your heart. Living and working “on purpose” is the secret to living a long, happy, healthy life. Jac discovered his purpose early in life and went after it like everything he does with full commitment and lots of hard work. Watching Jac work with his network of successful people, and his growing team is magical. He’s a superb young leader, and one of the most extraordinary humans I’ve ever known. Jac works without appearing to work because he’s always having fun helping people from all walks of life.
I’m still learning more of the details about Jac’s story because he is not the man who will tell you this story himself. Jac is extremely humble. Also, if you grow up in any small, rural town in America, and you are rich, happy, healthy, and successful, many people will resent you because of their head trash. Here’s what I can tell you about how Jac discovered his purpose, started making, saving, and investing money, and launched the dream small business of his life.
Jac was born in Waterville, Maine, and now lives in Augusta. He recently turned 36 years young. Like most kids on the planet earth who want more money to spend that any allowance, Jac started doing odd jobs for his neighbors. The odd jobs included shoveling snow, raking leaves, and cleaning pools. Unlike me, Jac somehow had the common sense to save most of what he made while I was the kid who spent his money as soon as it hit my hot little hands.
It wasn’t long before Jac owned a landscaping and pool cleaning business that he managed while working his way through high school. Jac attended and graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick. Upon graduation, Jac was on his way to being in the next business of his dreams working as a Certified Financial Planner who specialized in providing his clients with insurance and investment solutions. Unlike many people who pretend to be financial planners, as did I, Jac is the real deal who’s held to the highest standards of ethics in his industry. Jac is a fiduciary which means he must do what is right for his clients instead of selling the products that line his pockets with big commissions.
Jac’s financial planning business continued to grow while he bought real estate, fixed it up, and either sold the properties or fixed them up so he could make money from rents. As Jac continued to master both tasks very well, he wrote his first book, May You Drink from the Saucer, Timeless Truths for An Extraordinary Life. To say Jac wrote the book on living a successful life is true. Imagine that!
As the title of my article suggests, Jac learned the art of making lots of money, saving most of it, and how to invest successfully in real estate at a young age.
Why I Work with Jac and His Team
To people who know me based on the many years I worked as a financial advisor, I am one of the most cynical people about those who sell insurance, mutual funds, and other investments. The industry is full of people who will sell products with little or no regard for what is best for their customers. And to be fair, there are many trustworthy professionals you can find, buyer beware. It’s far better to swim with dolphins than learn to swim with sharks without being eaten alive. Dolphins are kind, and sharks, not so much.
The reason I work with Jac is I believe in his cause. When Jac asked me to work with him, I asked, “Jac, what makes you different from all the other advisers who work in your industry?”
Jac said, “I want to give 50% of my profits to end food insecurity in Maine.” That blew me away. I asked him to describe the details because at first, I had a tough time believing he could do this well. I didn’t know what food insecurity meant. Jac told me, “Cliff, over 20% of the kids who go to school in Maine live with families who can’t afford to feed them over the weekends or summer breaks.” He told me the hows and whys of starving kids, and that his purpose was to take half of his profits from corporate, school, and non-profit retirement plan management, and donate it to the food banks that provide backpacks full of food so that kids could eat when they’re not in school.
As soon as I heard this part of Jac’s story, I was in. I agreed to coach him and help him expand his business. Now, just over two years since we first met, Jac has hired several new advisors, one in Scottsdale, Arizona, where I live, and he’s on his way to transforming his small business into a national company that will help people “live, work, and retire on purpose” while donating money to feed starving children.
How to Be Happy, Healthy, and Wealthy Yourself
In closing, if you want to be like Jac, you can learn to do what he did by reading many books, finding successful mentors, refining your work ethic, and most important of all, discovering your purpose in life and how you can make a difference helping other people get what they want. That’s how to build a rich life.
The business of life for me and Jac doesn’t get any better than this. I get to serve another legendary leader doing what I love; business strategic coaching.
If you want to connect with Jac, his firm name is J.M. Arbour Wealth Management in Hallowell, Maine. You can find him at his website which is www.JacArbour.com.