February 12, 2020

The Undeniable Value of Investing in the Growth of Your People, with Cody Foster

Episode 66:

Cody Foster is one of the Founders of Advisors Excel. In 2004, after leaving a corporate job to partner with David Callanan to be independent financial advisors, they realized the support system for independent advisors was dramatically insufficient. So, in 2005, along with Derek Thompson, they formed Advisors Excel with a goal of building a world class support structure for independent financial advisors across the country. Today they have over 500 employees and are responsible for over $7 Billion in annual sales. Their success in achieving this has led to their story being featured in Success Magazine, Darren Hardy’s book “The Entrepreneur Rollercoaster” and Tony Robbins’ #1 New York Times bestselling book, “Money, Master the Game.”

Cody graduated from Washburn University in 1999 and has made Topeka his home ever since. He is a big believer in the future of the Capital City of Kansas, and has been a lead investor and developer in quality of life initiatives including The Cyrus Hotel, The Pennant, and Iron Rail Brewing. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Greater Topeka Partnership and was one of the five founding investors in Top Tank Topeka, a unique entrepreneur challenge patterned after the successful TV show, Shark Tank. As much as he enjoys business, his real love is family. Cody and his wife Jennifer, a Topeka native and fellow Washburn graduate, have been married for 16 years and have two children, Dylan and Ella.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Cody talks about 2019 being his best year professionally and his most challenging year personally, the challenges this presented, and how his team responded
  • How he and his partner intentionally developed their team to be able to carry-on if something were to happen to them
  • Why it is so significant to prioritize our health
  • Why it is important to figure out what is most important to you and then invest the most in it
  • How to be conscious of not taking time for granted
  • 70% of AE’s workforce consists of millennials and Cody explains why he embraces this and how they let their people know that they are valued, that the work they do is important and that he and his partner are committed to their long-term growth.
  • How they have grown from just over 47 employees on January 1, 2010 to 651 on January 1, 2020 and why Cody feels like they are now finally ready to realize the massive success they are capable of
  • The rewards of their organization putting in over 7,000 hours of community service in Topeka and the rewards that brings each team member personally and professionally
  • How consistency doesn’t mean that their vision doesn’t evolve, but that they stay true in the process to the core values and convictions that they built the company around

Ways to contact Cody:

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