If we haven’t met yet, I’m Anna Lautenbach, one of several new faces here at Walkner Condon over the last few months and a CFP®, tax consultant and accountant, among other things. Because the pandemic has cut down on in-person meetings and client events, I wanted to take a few minutes to formally introduce myself in writing instead, so I could tell you a little bit about who I am and some of the values that guide my work.
I Am Not Your “Typical” Accountant
I’ve heard this many times from my clients – and there are several reasons behind it, not the least of which is that I drive a GMC Denali 2500. You have to be prepared for the harsh Wisconsin winters, right? I also use it to plow, so it’s not just for looks. In all seriousness, one of the big reasons why I’m told I’m not a “typical” accountant is my communication style. I love to communicate with my clients. I feel having a good relationship with them is imperative to how I work with them. Those relationships, many of which last years upon years, are a big part of why I love what I do.
To complement my relationship-based approach, I also have professional work experiences outside of accounting. I am a landlord and have bought and sold a variety of businesses. I know what it feels like to wear the shoes of a business owner and how important a supportive accountant is to your business’s success. I like to use strategies that help my clients maximize tax savings and minimize tax due.
I Have a Unique Style with My Clients
As with taxes, communication is key. Getting to know you isn’t about checking off a standard list of questions. I want to truly understand your hopes and dreams, so we can build a plan that will take you to them. I like to work with my clients in a buy-and-hold style to help them achieve their retirement goals. But it’s not just about waiting to enjoy life once you’re retired – you should have room to enjoy your current desires, too. I look to help people find balance and live for both now and the future. I also focus on net, after-tax returns and take into account taxes and frequent trading costs, rather than chasing returns by frequently changing positions. I view investing with a long-term perspective and attempt to help take the emotion – from reactions to the market and events – out of trading.
I Have an Unquenchable Desire to Learn
I spend a lot of my time learning new things. Not only do I love learning, but being as knowledgeable as possible about financial planning and taxes is a benefit I can share directly with clients. That is why I spend a lot of my time earning designations and joining professional organizations like NAPFA, an organization for fee-only financial advisors. This allows me to expand my knowledge base and consult with my clients on a variety of topics, a versatility that is especially important because financial health is something that is all-encompassing. It’s not just taxes or just investments. It’s all of that taken together. So, learning as much as I can helps me better understand clients and allows me to help them with more areas of their financial plan.
My Work-Life Balance
When I’m not working, I love to be outside. The snow and freezing weather makes me really appreciate my happy place, which is anywhere as long as it involves being on the boat. I love warm summer days on the lake, something I really miss right now as snow-plowing and snow-shoveling season begins. I also enjoy exploring the trails with my family on my Side by Side, a UTV that is great for driving on dirt, mud, snow and more. In addition to the Side by Side, I have a variety of bikes, including a fat tire bike, which is great for the snowy months, a gravel bike and a tri bike. And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention my passion for running – a perfect day for me includes a trail run.
Tell Me About You
Now that you have a better picture of who I am, I’d love to get to know more about you. Whether you’re a small business owner trying to juggle all your responsibilities or you’ve got big plans for your retirement you want to share, I’m here to help. Here’s a link to my calendar, so we can schedule a Zoom meeting or call to find out if we are a good fit.
And, as we get closer to the new year, here’s a pertinent blog about items to check off your tax planning to-do list before time runs out.
Walkner Condon Tax Services and Walkner Condon Financial Advisors are separate, independent entities.