top of page

Jenna Biancavilla

Pearl Capital Management

Jenna Biancavilla

@0:00 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Hello everyone and welcome to the Shades of Entrepreneurship. This is your host, Mr.

Gabriel Flores. Today I'm here with Jenna Bianca-Ville. Sorry. I even worked on the last name Bianca-Ville. Jenna, how are we doing?

@0:24 - Jenna Biancavilla

Doing well. Thanks for having me today, Gabriel.

@0:27 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Yeah, I'm excited to see the CEO of Pearl Capital Management. And the reason I'm actually excited about this one is because we're going to be talking a lot about financial strategies for individuals, for business owners, for retirees.

going to kind of get into all of it. But before we get into all of that, Jenna, please introduce yourself.

Where are you calling in from? us a little background.

@0:48 - Jenna Biancavilla

Oh, I am in Phoenix, Arizona right now, but it's about to get pretty warm here in Phoenix. So I am newly.

a snowbird or I guess if you leave Arizona we we call it a sunbird whatever I'm flocking to Michigan so that starts next week to get out of the heat and try leaving my team alone to run the business without me so this is going to be my first year trying trying being in two states throughout the year.

Background you introduced me as the CEO there's seven people on my team so yeah I have to run it all and wear all the hats and I don't know if I always call myself a CEO because when you're a small team you give yourself a title and I don't know when you earn CEO but I don't know if it's at seven or fifteen or twenty or fifty people so I still have maybe little imposter syndrome around that title but boy I'm wearing all the hats.

@1:47 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

I love it you know it's it's kind of funny people again it's a title at the end of the day but what that it really truly is is you are doing everything yeah you have your hands in all of the cookie jars.

So tell us a little bit about Pearl Capital Management.

@2:03 - Jenna Biancavilla

What is it? So Pearl Capital Management is a completely independent boutique wealth management firm. So we're not affiliated, stuck with some big wire house that puts profits before people and tells us what we have to sell, which is pretty stinking cool that we get to be a fiduciary and put our clients first.

And so we're considered a large trader or a large SEC registered firm. So we've got enough assets now to be playing with the big boys, but you know, as business owners, even though someone put the large sticker on us, I still feel like there's these just multi-billion dollar firms that are still the competition that we're competing against.

@2:45 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Now is this your first entrepreneurial endeavor?

@2:50 - Jenna Biancavilla

If so, I did have, I guess I still have a branch of a lending company. So there's the branch.

saying, you know, when you take a franchise of what someone else built, it's easy. And then I was a partner in a firm before I launched my own firm.

So I had my experience in and around and doing all the hats before I jumped in. And then since launching Pearl Capital in late 2015, early 2016, I've also launched a couple other businesses.

I've got a technology company now. I've got a masterclass that's launched. So once you're a serial entrepreneur or a multi-prinewer is this new term we're using, you can't really turn it off.

I think I have a great business idea every single week. And I have to remind myself, I don't have time for another business.

It's a great idea. So I guess if any listeners want ideas, I'm not sure about ideas.

@3:50 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

I love it. Now, let's talk about this transition because you kind of mentioned, you know, you were doing some work before.

You did it. were in the landing, working with the franchisee. Our franchisor now you decided to create your own business.

What made you decide to go crazy and become an entrepreneur and start your own business on your own?

@4:11 - Jenna Biancavilla

Oh, especially in the highly regulated, huge barrier to entry finance world. I know exactly. You had to be kind of crazy, right?

Just a small amount. So I worked under a large broker dealer and a large firm and of ran with a branch with a partner and was doing all the hats, but still had the structure and the compliance department, the legal department of the large firm.

And I did that for seven or eight years and didn't really, I knew I wanted to continue to grow, but I didn't know I was going to open up my own business around that period of time.

didn't have all my ducks in a row. But what I did know was that I wanted to put my clients first and where I was at was no longer the place that I could put my clients.

clients first. Because a lot of those big wire houses, they're profits first. I have to say, I don't blame them and we want them to stay that way because when we are investing, so I'm an investor, when we're investing, we want them to think about their shareholders and make sure that they're giving us profits as an investor in these companies.

So it's what they're supposed to be doing. But from an advisor perspective, serving clients, it's really frustrating to be stuck in this conflict of interest area where the company you work for puts profits and shareholders first.

But then you want to serve your clients first and you have to find a way to balance this and it's never perfect or equal.

So I hated that and I wanted to just serve the people I was promising that I was going to help them financially.

So I was switching from that company to a place that I thought I could do that and I had already told my clients, we're leaving, we're going, we're going to go where there's greener pastures.

then six months in this process, as we're moving, they sold, they did some shady things and I was, you know,

crap moment of, I don't know who I can trust. don't know where I can go. So it, it, it was a an old crap moment of, all right, can't trust anyone else might as well do this myself.

Let's see what happens. And I didn't tell many people I started the business that first year. I was kind of in shock and also really busy and scared I'd fail.

And, and so I had to get a year under my mouth before, was like, okay, I'm doing this. I'm an entrepreneur.

So we're like eight years in now. So now I fully identify as a business owner, but I did not have my ducks in a row, which is hard.

I'm a planner. So to say I didn't have a perfect plan was a tough spot for me.

@6:40 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

What would you say was the most valuable thing you learned during that first year when you're starting your business that has made you successful today?

@6:49 - Jenna Biancavilla

You know, someone said to me, it might have been at the tail end of horn. If you are going to say I started a business or I'm doing a thing or I want an award, it's going to be you.

have to toot your own horn and make sure that you're telling people that you're doing this because I kind of had this like, I was an employee, right?

was a worker that then started a business but just wanted to serve clients and so I had my head down.

was serving clients. was getting the work that I had the website that's like, oh, well, they'll just know that I do great work and they'll cover my website and hire me and the marketing part that I like, you need to tell people what you're up to part.

@7:35 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

I had to learn that one the hard way and that was a good learning lesson for my first year.

Now, one of the things you mentioned, you're a fiduciary, correct?

@7:43 - Jenna Biancavilla


@7:44 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

So for the folks listening, a fiduciary is someone who manages money or property for someone else. So when you name a fiduciary, this individual accepts the role that by law they manage the person's money and property on the behalf of you.

again, And this is what Jen is kind of getting that is her goal is to really help the benefit of you, the individual.

Now, you also mentioned kind of going through this process. There's a lot of, a lot of paperwork to get into the fiduciary kind of talk us through that piece.

What, what did you have to, what are steps did you have to do to even start your business as fiduciary?

@8:21 - Jenna Biancavilla

Well, and I'd like to further that definition, a little more clarification there because in financial planning, when we're housing money, we further say legally, we must put the best interest of the client before our own, before the firm, which is that big difference of working at a big wire house where you got to put the profits of the company versus the true fiduciary if they define it, and people try to define it however they want.

But if you define it as put the client's interest above your own and above That's the place I really like to operate.

that's my suggestion. I might be a little biased, but my suggestion to people is if you're hiring someone to manage your money.

Ask who the interests are putting first, at least know what you're getting into, if you're walking into a sales person's office, know you're being sold, ask the questions.

But as far as paperwork, gosh, this is, I could go into the weeds and really bore everyone, so I don't want to do that too much.

When people ask me how to get started in financial planning, and if they can start a registered investment advisory firm from scratch with no experience, I highly suggest not doing that and working at a firm first and seeing all the rules that you have to follow first, because if you, the SEC and FINRA and all the regulatory bodies that oversee us, ignorance is not an excuse.

If you don't know the rules and you don't play by the rules, you're out of business, and they take away your business, any moments notice, and they do it every single day, or they find you millions of dollars or worse, you could go to jail.

So pretty high regulations, I'd really work in a firm and learn the rules first. for opening a firm and and the rules are silly for the longest time we had this just was less lifted like a year ago we had a no testimonials so someone went on google reviews or Yelp reviews and wrote a testimonial the SEC was getting mad at us and saying take that down because we have no control over Yelp reviews but they had a no testimonials role and in every other business that's that's the king of how to market yourself and we had a rule against it so their silly rules sometimes as well that is that is very interesting and you know one of the things you're talking about too is individuals when you're going to connect with a financial planner to kind of ask some various questions what advice would you give to an individual when they are looking for a financial planner what what should they be thinking about what questions should they be asking how how do they make sure they find the right fit oh that's a great question i think interviewing and finding someone that serves your unique needs

is so important, and there are financial professionals for every stage of life, and you're probably not going to have the same one through all stages of life.

so that's really painful for people when they outgrow the starter advisor, that's at the big name shop, and I'll try to not name drop the starter advisors, but there's a lot of starter advisors, and they help people save like $50 a month just to get started and get out of that, and like they get you going, but they're not going to be the person who has a tax efficient way to sell your business and tax efficient retirement strategies, so you don't run out of money in retirement, they're just different skill sets.

you want to interview for exactly what you're looking for, and make sure the person you're talking to is specialized in what you need.

So I can't give the advice of this is what every listener should get, instead it's find someone who you identify with.

It should be a longer-ish term relationship, so make sure you like the guy or girl. Don't hire someone that you're going to avoid because you're paying them.

So make sure you're going to want to call them, and then also ask them how often you get to speak to them, how often you get to meet with them, because if you want to see them quarterly, but they only offer yearly meetings, know that ahead of time.

@12:22 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

When you see a client, what are some of the most common, either mistakes or challenges that they seem to be dealing with or facing, or maybe the most common questions that they have for you?

@12:35 - Jenna Biancavilla

So we are a place where most people graduate into, because we're that more boutique shop, we can do some high-level planning.

Also, I'm a business owner, so I really attract business owners because we speak the same language. And the guy that's working at Big Name Financial Institution doesn't know what it's like to manage a staff and run payroll and actually run a business.

And so also the big companies usually aren't allowed to connect dots and business owners want as much delegated as possible.

So usually when they come to us, what they love is that we connect all the dots. we have them sign a release, we talk to their CPA directly and we make sure that the financial plan and the tax plan have this smooth continuity.

Most of our clients, their tax preparer just prepares taxes for one year. they'll talk about a two or three year plan.

We come in and do tax planning, a little bit different. So we'll write a lifetime tax plan for a client and maybe even a multi-generational tax plan for a client if we think that we're passing money down to the next generation or businesses.

And then we hand this gigantic four-year plan to the tax preparer and say, we might pay a little bit more money this year, but look at how this is going to save us over the lifetime.

so this is a long-term strategy, not a just lower it right now and shoot ourselves in the foot in the future strategy.

So that's the number one thing people come to me for. So I'm not saying it's the number one problem people have, but I have this niche where that's what people are referred to me to help them with because there's not a lot of people doing lifetime tax productions.

@14:19 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Now you mentioned, you know, your clients are primarily like that business owner kind of area. Now, what would you, what's kind of recommendations or what, what are the biggest things that business owners should be aware of when they're planning either to grow and scale or an exit strategy?

@14:39 - Jenna Biancavilla

A big thing they should be aware of is usually tax, unfortunately, going to eat away at, I don't know, up to 50% of what you're selling your business for.

And you're, you're thinking, yes, I'm selling my business for $20 million, this is great. then you sit down and actually have.

Someone do the math and you're like, oh, I get 10. And then after I pay my M&A guy and all of these things, get nine and you're your big ex, it wasn't as big as you thought.

And so there's a lot of tax strategies you can put in place to not get that big hit all at front if you plan ahead of time and early, but if you wait until after the fact, you just pay all the money in tax, unfortunately.

@15:25 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

think that's a great point. There's a lot of hidden fees, a lot of things that folks don't really take into consideration because we haven't gone down that path.

Now, with that said, what are some tips because inflation's high right now, right? cost of living is expensive and people are trying to figure out ways to save money.

So what are some tips?

@15:46 - Jenna Biancavilla

What are the what are the some tips to make the most of our money? How does how can we budget a budget better?

Ooh, actually one of my favorite tips. This isn't exactly budgeting, but I think any business owner who's got some.

Some cash that's moving knows that you need to keep money in your checking account so that you can pay payroll bills, whatever is coming out, but it feels like dead cash, right?

It's not being, it's not being utilized well. So a lot of banking institutions will set up a sweep account for you where anything in excess of maybe, you know, 10, 20, $30,000, whatever you want to keep in your account.

If $100,000 depending on what you're spending daily, it'll sweep up to a money market. And so you can get, be getting paid 5% on your operating account, and then every day it sweeps back down, and every night it sweeps back up.

So you get that 5% money market sweep on your operating account. So yeah, we talk about inflation and interest rates being bad, we can also use these to our advantage if we just set up the right types of accounts with our banking institution.

@16:54 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

So that'll be a great tip. Call your banker, ask if they can implement a sweep account for you. Man, that is an awesome option.

awesome idea. You know, I never really actually thought about that. And, you know, one thing I've actually my wife's worst subject to talking about is always retirement.

I'm always asking, I'm always like, Hey, this is where I'm at retirement. This is where I'm going. Because my biggest fear, you know, you're kind of talking about building and scaling and saving money.

But my biggest fear is running out of retirement savings. So how, how do I ensure to not outlive my retirement savings?

@17:24 - Jenna Biancavilla

Well, it's the same way that you budget while you're working. know what your inflows are, and you know what your outflows are.

And you make sure you're living within your means. However, inflows your income, it's not coming from your job anymore.

It's coming from your pensions, your social security, your savings. And so you need to calculate out what your new retirement paycheck is going to be.

Easy math is you can look up a kind of a financial rule. It's called the 4% rule. This is kind of a very basic concept of

you can roughly live off of about 4% of what you have saved for retirement if you're retiring around 65 and roughly hopefully not run out of money.

I can't do any guarantees without knowing our people investing because if you're investing the money and something that's losing money, this 4% rule is not really going to work for you.

But that's a kind of a tried-interest strategy and something for you to just do a calculation on your own.

Am I going to run out of money? Can I live off of 4% of the assets in addition to social security pensions, whatever other guaranteed income you might have coming in?

And if you can live off of that, then you've saved enough.

@18:40 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)


@18:40 - Jenna Biancavilla

And your investments are right, I guess.

@18:44 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Yeah, yeah. Investing in a sound strategy is making sure to diversify your investments is always something I always encourage.

I'm not a financial planner or anything, but I do encourage looking at different ways and talking to individuals like Jenna who know much more than me.

in the financial world. Now, one of the things you talked about is your primarily focus, right? You're with business owners.

You also mentioned that SEC does not allow these testimonials, which I got to say, folks, that's really the bread and butter of how to start a business is you amplify your testimonials and you say, hey, this is the work I've done.

Here's a proof of it. How did you build your brand when you have so much limitations because of the SEC?

@19:31 - Jenna Biancavilla

Oh, it is like the movies where they're navigating and the lasers, like, kind of. Like, don't trip a laser.

Follow the rules. Stay within bounds. I'm a rule follower, so I'm just really lucky that I somehow have entrepreneur gene and rule follower gene because usually these two things happen now.

You're not having, but in this industry. You don't want to be breaking rules, and some of them feel silly because every single regulator that gets elected wants to say, I'm regulating Wall Street.

It's somehow like the elect me cry, and then they get there, and they're like, they have so many rules.

What can I make up? Right? They're like, I can't even think of what new rules they can come up with.

But they do. And then we have to figure out how to follow the next year's next legislator's new set of rules.

But how I built the business, it was a lot of in-person networking, it was a lot of get out and meet people and shake hands and show them that I know what I'm talking about.

I think originally when I was young in the business, I started the business at 29. You're not supposed to start a financial planning business as a 29-year-old female.

The industry says no. No. All the movies. tell you. We all know what the advisor looks like in the movies.

He doesn't look like me. And so I needed to like show someone face to face. I'm smart. I know what I'm talking about.

I use technology. I'm with the times. I have more relevant recent strategies than the guy who's obsolete. And yeah, he looks like the guy in the movies, but he doesn't even like he still wants you to fax your documents to him.

So showing them that sometimes experience doesn't always equal better. And then you might get better value out of someone who's a little different.

And the other half of it was me accepting that I wasn't a good fit for everyone. Some people wanted that old school advisor that it looks like they have in the movies and just me coming to peace with.

I'm not a good fit for everyone, but the people I'm a good fit for. I'm going to provide tremendous value for.

@21:50 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

You know, it's interesting you mentioned the good fit piece because you kind of stated how you organically noticed the individual kind of financial planners, not my.

area of focus, but my real customer is the business owner, and you also kind of, as you mentioned, worked previously in this kind of world, what was kind of like the easy part for you, or has there been an easy part for you in the transition of saying, you what, now I have my niche, I know who my people are.

Has there been anything that kind of came relatively easy, or what is the most enjoyable piece about that transition?

@22:28 - Jenna Biancavilla

Well, I can't say that I've fully transitioned, I gotta be honest, I wish I was better at fully defining my niche and just saying I only work with business owners, but I have a lot of individual households that I still work with and I still love, and if I had, I don't know, I get a lot of women who are a divorcee or a widow that come into my office and are just like, know, in not finance terms, and I still love educating, and I still love

I've taken this client. So I am not following every single business book I've ever read that said find a niche and stick with it.

I still keep things a little broader. I probably should sit down with a business coach and get stopped over the head for this one.

@23:13 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

So that's not the right answer. know it. No, I actually, I actually enjoy that. You know, one of the things we did, we started nonprofits, the business accelerator in the program and we decided to go business agnostic.

And the reason we did that is because what we realized during the accelerator piece in particular is it kind of removes the, removes the competition away from it.

Because when you have a business accelerator just focus on the same niche, it kind of gets a little competitive.

But I do like the diversification within different industries because it allows you also to expand your knowledge beyond just the business owner perspective, because certainly don't get me wrong, being an entrepreneur.

have a lot of different, you know, like Because you mentioned, lot of rules that we must follow, but the household rules, the

Household sometimes doesn't have this fall the same rules as the business owner. So with that said, what are some of the difficulties of starting this business?

@24:09 - Jenna Biancavilla

The difficulties of getting it started or the difficulties of working with a lot of different types of clients.

@24:15 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Let's do both. Let's start with the starting out your business.

@24:19 - Jenna Biancavilla

What has been difficult about starting out the business? You know, I have to say I went through all of the entrepreneurial struggles that you read in the business books.

when I was working with a team, right before I started Pearl Capital, I hired, fired, managed, trained, and ran my own client book of business.

And you know, it like a team of revolving door of 20 people that no one stuck. So I was always training, managing.

And when I started Pearl Capital, I like, well, don't want to do that again.

@24:52 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

That was terrible.

@24:52 - Jenna Biancavilla

I'm going to figure out how to get all of the right third party businesses to put this together. So I don't have to do that.

Um, which we all know, like, you need to hire your first employee. You need to have a growth plan, you need to have a scale plan.

So, uh, didn't do that for the first couple of years, finally accepted that I was going to hire again, waited too long, didn't hire soon enough.

So like all the, the same stories we all go through, where we, we have to get to that next level.

Um, originally built the business around me as, you know, the advisor and then had my admin team to support me.

@25:26 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

And then, you know, got the next gut punch. You don't have a business. You just created a job for yourself.

Like, it won't run if you're not giving advice.

@25:34 - Jenna Biancavilla

okay, go to the next level. Hire other means who are also giving advice, who I can really take a vacation and take a day off.

And so I, I've had like the, the very quintessential, expected entrepreneur journey where I waited too long to do the next thing that the business book told you to do.

Um, so I, I wish I would have just read the book and listen to the advice or listen to a podcast and like.

@26:00 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Did the thing but i had to i'm i guess i'm stubborn i had to learn the hard way on some of those but i think that's the point is you learned.

I mean i'm growing we're here stop i think that's the biggest thing about entrepreneurship is is it's not easy and sometimes you're gonna have those gut punches.

But it's about persevering to continue on right it's just continuing to move forward now in the next one you mentioned what we're what we're what would you say are some of the difficulties working with you know i very non-nitched clientele.

@26:33 - Jenna Biancavilla

I i i do feel like people fit a mold where they come with high level problems i love the the complex real life math puzzle that is every individual situation so the similarity is most people who come to me are complex which is fun i don't get a lot of like easy easy financial plans and and financial plans and

If I did, I'd probably hand them to one of my team members, because I love problem-solving. I like puzzles.

think I'm kind of spreadsheet puzzle nerd, which is usually also not a trait of an entrepreneur.

@27:13 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

love I'm a nerd. I'm a nerd.

@27:15 - Jenna Biancavilla

I love the data. with that, I think there is a blueprint that I get, which is complex problems, and they don't know who can solve them, so they come to be solved here or just unorganized.

They need someone to like pull it all together, organize it, get a better plan in place.

@27:34 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Yeah. That's me.

@27:35 - Jenna Biancavilla

It just feels like chaos, and you want it to feel like a real plan. also business owners, I don't only serve the business, I'm not just a business financial advisor.

They're humans, individuals, families with their spouse and their kids, and they bring their personal problems. there's a lot of overlap, and usually my business owners, the goal is sell the business have Have an excellent business.

retire, then they turn into recovering business owners.

@28:08 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

It's very true. Never. You're kind of, I feel like even though you sell your business, as you were mentioning, Jenna, you're always an entrepreneur.

You're constantly now, let's kind of go through, because you've mentioned, you do see a lot of diverse clientele. So let's let's kind of go through some advice for various stages.

Let's say, for example, what advice would you give for an individual, just young individual coming like the 15 year old to a 20 year old, they're just kind of getting into career.

Maybe they're thinking about starting their own business. They're just starting to bring in a paycheck. What are some things that they should be thinking at a young age to help support them for generational wealth when they later on in life?

@28:52 - Jenna Biancavilla

The first thing, and this is good advice for everyone, but really for young people is lifestyle creep. dollars, put it in percentages.

The other thing you want to know is if we're saving for retirement, Roth IRA, you pay tax now, traditional IRA, you pay tax later.

So you don't pay tax now. So those are two buckets. can also do this with Roth 401k, traditional 401k, same concept.

We like Roth when our tax brackets are low. So if you think this is a low earning year for me and I have a lot of upward projections and I don't imagine being back in this low tax bracket, pay the tax now, get it in a Roth, never pay tax again.

So when you're in higher tax bracket, you don't have to pay tax. And then the exact opposite, if you're in a really high bracket, high earning year, you can maybe not pay tax now.

then if in your retirement, making less money, pay tax then. That assumes our tax brackets don't change. if the government changes our brackets, then that's terrible advice.

So like a lot of assumptions in there.

@31:00 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

I mean, granted the last time it took several years for them to change the track back. So hopefully one's not coming in anytime soon.

Now, one of the things you also mentioned was savings. I believe that savings is really important no matter who you are.

What are some saving avenues individuals should be exploring outside of the typical banking savings? I think everybody knows about a savings account with a banking, but I'm not sure if everybody knows that there are other saving avenues.

@31:27 - Jenna Biancavilla

What are those? Ooh, so for savings, I mentioned that sweep account for business owners that goes up to a money market.

And I did mention that money markets are paying about 5% right now. That's a current number. So we're in 2024, coming into the summer of 24.

So that's not always going to be the case. I am supposed to make little caveats and disclaimers I say percentage rate of returns.

But money market. or high-yield savings accounts are paying a lot of money right now. So for people who are listening now and getting this advice now, make sure your money's not stuck in large bank institutions, savings account earning less than 1%.

I personally have my high-yield savings account over at American Express. It's a big bank, so there's the security there, and it's a great high-yield interest rate, no minimums, no fees.

It's been great, and I have no affiliation with American Express, so if someone wants to call me for an affiliate link, I'll happily take it.

@32:38 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

There you go, yeah, totally exactly. In fact, you know the video that in fact, go ahead and send me that.

I'll put it on the newsletter, which is a great time to plug the Shades of Entrepreneurship New Letter, folks.

You can subscribe at, so please do that. And the interesting thing about, as you continue to grow, especially, I think I read this recently on CNBC News, think it's like $89.

8% of Americans actually do not have a high-yield savings account. When you think about letting you, people talk about making your money work for you, that's essentially what a high-yield savings account or a money market does, right?

You put it in there and you'll gain interest. Sure, there's some certain risk with the money market at times, but if you look kind of, I would say, my personal experience when I'm looking at the stock market and I look at 30 years, so the time frame, because that's about how long it's going to take me to retire, it hasn't lost money in a 30-year time frame.

So I kind of generally assume, yes, it's a bit of a risk, but if I keep it in there for long enough, I will see a return on my investment.

And so again, it's just another way to think about it. Now, let's say, let's talk about the retiree. Somebody's a little bit now further along in their career and they're getting ready to retire.

@33:54 - Jenna Biancavilla

What are some things retirees should be thinking about before they go ahead and say, you know what, I'm ready to retire.

And I keep talking about tax, but answer is think about taxes. So a lot of people don't know that money that we save in the traditional 401k in the traditional IRA that we haven't paid tax on yet.

When you hit your mid 70s, there's something called required minimum distribution or RMDs. And so the government forces you to take a certain percentage out of that account and forces you to pay tax, whether you need it or want to spend it or not.

And so a lot of retirees don't know this, and they continue to save all of their money in this pre-tax account, and then they hit their mid 70s.

And they're just like, how am I in the highest tax bracket I've ever been in my life while I'm retired?

I don't need to spend this much money. This wasn't the plan. And so knowing about required minimum distributions, having a plan ahead of time and usually

that that looks like is retiring from your job, not taking your pension or Social Security or something for a gap year or a couple gap years and maybe doing some Roth conversions and getting some of that money that you haven't paid tax on yet and your IRA over to that Roth or even just start pulling it out, pay the taxes.

then you can start taking your Social Security pensions, things like that later and you get a larger amount because the amount of your Social Security you get is tax based on how much your income is.

So if you're killing money out of your IRA, then the amount of Social Security goes down because more of its tax.

And so there's just all of this stuff that's really intricate. If you do a really long multi-year plan, you can see it.

If you're just focusing one year at a time, all of a sudden you hit mid-70s and you're like, what is RMD?

@35:48 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

This sucks.

@35:49 - Jenna Biancavilla

So that is a really important thing to know about as a retiree.

@35:53 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

You know what? I got to tell you, Jennie, just reminded me of something. And you just reminded me of how little I know.

know about the financial world and how much I need my own financial planner I swear because folks, again, the beauty of it is there are a lot of people out there that are so much smarter than us that are in these worlds that really understand what it means to create generational wealth.

mean, a lot of this podcast is focused on helping educate people to one be successful in entrepreneurial journey but also to build an established generational wealth, right?

Because that's the goal. I have two young girls and that's really my goal is to build that generational wealth.

So Jenna, people are interested that you got them talking about you. They really like what you're doing. How do they contact you?

if they are interested in hiring you for their financial planning services?

@36:46 - Jenna Biancavilla

How can they get a hold of you? Oh, I have a scheduling link. It's You can just jump into my calendar but that might fill up quickly if there's no meetings available because I just said this out loud.

You can email the team, which is email at and we can put that in your show notes. You can just email the team in request of meeting with us.

I call it my free mini plan. I removed the free consultation because it's not a sales conversation. I actually give actionable mini financial planning advice right there in the meeting, and I tell them, if I were you, I do this, this, this, this.

Now they know how I give advice, the type of advice I want to give. If they even need me, because someone who's a do-it-yourselfer and is just like, I got it, I'm going to implement it, don't need you anymore.

That's a great first meeting. Everyone feels like it was a good use of their time. They're probably going to go refer me because they're like, hey, girl gives away free advice.

Usually it least turns into a referral, but for the people who are just saying, I don't want to do this, I want to trust you to help me with it.

Those are the people I want to work with anyways, and they know how I give advice. So that's why I do kind of a non-sales-free mini plant.

So it's a pretty value-add experience for reaching out for the first time.

@38:12 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Excellent. I got to tell you, I'm selfish, folks. I'm going to be able to use this link before this is ours, because I am definitely getting on sliding an agenda as DM's as quickly as possible.

Because again, the amount of knowledge, this thing's just that 70-year-old thing that you mentioned, taking out amount of the distribution at the age of mid-70s, I did not know that.

So I'm like, oh, oh, that is very interesting. I'm in a very unique position where I work for non-profit.

So I do have a pension, but I also have a 401k and a 403 and a 457. And I'm also putting in one into my IRA.

Jenna, we're going to get on the books and we're going to have a conversation, because I'm very interested. Now, now again, what other kind of things kind of I don't think I think we kind of missed the business.

this owner advice. And I would love to kind of loop back around to that. What for a business owner that is either about to sell or exit their business, what advice would you give them?

@39:12 - Jenna Biancavilla

I just want some consultants on this. Having, I think having the right consultants around you, so someone who can help you prep the business for sale, so you can really start planning this by years in advance, that's ideal because most of us are not operating at premium efficiency to be selling the business at top dollar.

So you can have that advice. It'll usually almost always pay for itself. Having the plan on what you're doing with the proceeds of the sale of your business before you enter into that contract, because if it's multi-generational, you want a dynasty, you want this money to last beyond you, beyond your children.

We have some awesome tax efficient things that we can put in place. If that's the goal, if the goal is this is just for me and my retirement, I'm not taking care of anyone else.

There's other tax efficient ways to do it, but you need to know what your plan is and then ask someone what's the best way to implement this plan ahead of time because once you sign the dotted line and you get the check, you just pay the tax and you don't have any of those strategies available to you anymore.

So like anything, ask questions ahead of time, don't ask for forgiveness afterwards because the IRS isn't very forgiving.

@40:31 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

That is very true. I got to tell you, Jenny, you made a really good point. Planning your exit for business owners, planning your exit at the beginning is very important because usually an exit occurs because of a life stage event occurred, Either the pandemic happened or somebody came and had an offer you cannot refuse even though you weren't planning to sell or maybe you know, you caught an illness, you know, something that occurs in life tends to come.

kind of push the the business towards that exit. And so just just being prepared for that is very, very important.

I really like your your answer of just asking questions, you know, getting there and asking questions, you know, you mentioned, as you started, you just got out there and networked and built your relationships that way.

And that's that's really how you built your business. And I can't tell you enough, folks, getting out and networking, building, connecting with other people, asking questions of understanding, having a humbled approach to business is very important to understanding that we don't know everything, right?

I try to tell my wife I know everything she doesn't believe me still, but we'll get there one day.

But you know, just having the humbleness to ask the questions and truly taking the feedback is very, very important.

Now, Janet, there any last words you'd like to tell the listeners?

@41:52 - Jenna Biancavilla

Well, you mentioned, you know, the pandemic or a health event and things that happen to us that we can't foresee as business owners, which...

Obstacles happen. I love Ryan Holliday's obstacle is the way if if you're anyone's a reader here But as a financial planner, I feel like too many of my business owners are not Saving enough for themselves.

not paying themselves enough because we as business owners know the ROI on our money If I take this money and put it back in my business, I know exactly what I'm getting out of it versus ROI on stock market on real estate investments on things that are like I don't understand and I don't have control over We don't like that.

So we don't like paying ourselves and putting it something. don't have control over We like just pumping it right back into the business which for so many business owners ends up being a catastrophe if like one obstacle happens that we couldn't have foreseen like a global pandemic which a lot of People didn't see coming.

that's a last piece of advice is pay yourself what your worth take some money out of the business hold it for yourself for your future for your children for a rainy day for that unforeseen obstacle that we can't predict.

@43:09 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Well well said Jenna Bianca Villa I'm gonna say CEO of Pearl Capital Management even though she's still struggling with that.

Thank you again so very much I think a lot of great advice again folks that are interested her information will be on the newsletter the week before the episode airs the week the episode airs and the week the after the episode airs so you can subscribe to the Shades of Entrepreneurship newsletter by visiting the Shades of you can also follow us on the social sites Instagram linked in Facebook and TikTok at the Shades of E where there will be reels of Jenna in our conversation and then you can also stream this entire conversation on their podcast or on YouTube.

Jenna again thank you so much for your time I really do appreciate it enjoy your time

@44:00 - Jenna Biancavilla

out in Michigan as the new new resident over there. I'm surprised you didn't want to go to Michigan during the winter.

I hear it's just phenomenal out there. I'm to let you know, guess.

@44:11 - Gabriel Flores (The Shades of Entrepreneurship)

Well, again, I thank you again so much for folks listening. Thank you and have a great night. 

bottom of page