RG 201 – From Sushi Kitchen to Disrupting the Financial Advisory Industry w/ John Stoj

John is an investment advisor who has managed over $3.5 billion dollars and a sushi kitchen! His career started on Wall Street 25 years ago in commercial banks and hedge fund management. He realised that the financial services industry was flush with companies and professionals more focussed on their best interests rather than the customer. He believes that good financial advice is worth more than what it costs. John made his first dollar moving the lawn as a child.

John’s first job out of college was working on a mortgage back securities desk. When he was on Wall Street he went from job to job aiming to make more money and was fine with doing it for himself and not thinking about other people. Later on when he came off the street he realised that he used to like it so much because the wage was uncapped, he loved that your hard work was rewarded. It took the financial crisis to push him into being a solo entrepreneur and then he became jaded with the system. He left his banking job and went to form his own money manager but he eventually left finance completely and went to start a sushi restaurant. This was partly because he loves seeing people enjoying themselves but also because it’s an easy food to scale. He only needs to teach people to cook rice and the rest is assembly so there are fewer risks.

He was pushed out of this sector when he had a son and the sushi business ran overnight and he couldn’t maintain the hours. He sold the business and took some personal time off. He started helping some friends with their investments and realised that this was what he loved doing. When looking at financial advisors he advises that you look at how they’re getting paid, for example it’s a red flag if they’re offering free advise but there’s something to sell later down the line.

Top tip

  • Most important habit – Early morning start, quiet time
  • Most influential person – dad
  • Most important tool – notebook
  • Biggest failure – not listening to his gut
  • Contact – johnfstoj.com
  • verbatimfinancial.com

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