On painting your future and lines in the sand, featuring Heidi King
Heidi King, CPFA, AAMS®, learned responsibility early. She had to.
“I’ve never had a choice to be frivolous,” she said. “I never had a choice to do what I wanted to do. It was always about others.” Her commitments continued as she grew into a young professional, lending a hand to family members who needed help making ends meet.
For some, this school of life creates resentment. For others, resignation. For King, it fueled her compassion. It gave her strength and became defining.
“I know how hard it can be to struggle and to save just $5. That’s really where the backbone of my practice is – literally just helping people get started, to see that it can get better.”
Her practice is built around the values of community – doing the right thing for people. It’s given her success. Many of her clients first come to her as people at important moments in their lives trying to figure out how to go forward.
She speaks from her experiences. “All of those life experiences make you a better advisor,” she said.
“If you can keep a positive attitude, I think it rubs off on everyone around you. I don’t see the point in wallowing in something you can’t control. I just put on a happy face and march forward.”
King had a fast trajectory in the business, a product of timing, gumption and her own talents. Relatively early in her career, while serving as a licensed assistant, she was given the opportunity to be an advisor – in the midst of a market downturn and recession.
“You just have to dive right in, right?” she said.
She drew from her experiences and tightened her bootstraps, as she had so many times in her life. It was going well.
And then her bank branch was robbed.
She was held at gunpoint.
Afterward, she drew a line in the sand.
“I needed a career change and a life change,” she said.
She passed along her book of business and took a 9 to 5 with an annuity company in another town. She said the experience was a positive one, but life wasn’t done throwing hurdles.
When she had her second child, it was a traumatic delivery that nearly cost King her life.
“There are all kinds of trials that I think shape you,” she said. “After that, driving to a corporate job an hour away was no longer a priority in my life.” Her husband, Blake, was her rock, King said, supporting her decisions at every step.
She was ready to return to Wilson Bank Investment Services. She wanted the flexibility to serve people on a personal level while maintaining the most important things in her life.
“I started over, which is kind of crazy in this business. I started a book and then I let it go for something else, and I came back and had to build it up from scratch,” King said. “It was difficult, but it was the best decision I ever made to leave and the best decision I ever made to come back.” The wisdom of her decision was made especially clear when her husband got cancer in 2019. As he had been her rock, she was his, and with their faith in God, and strength together, they got through it.
Through all this, she has persevered and kept a smile. She’s not one to think “if only,” she said.
“It’s not ‘fake it till you make it,’ but not everything has to be doom and gloom all the time. If you can keep a positive attitude, I think it rubs off on everyone around you. I don’t see the point in wallowing in something you can’t control. I just put on a happy face and march forward.”
This piece was featured in Aspire Magazine, a biannual publication from the Women Financial Advisors Network. View the latest.
Follow along on social media with #RJWomen.