This article was written by Baird Private Wealth Management, presenting sponsor of the 2017 EWGA Cup Series and a champion of women both on and off the golf course.
It started with a simple conversation in the spring of 2016, and it quickly gained steam as a potential partnership idea that made a whole lot of sense for both parties.
Baird is an employee-owned, international wealth management, capital markets, private equity and asset management firm with offices in the United States, Europe and Asia.
Private Wealth Management, known at Baird as "PWM," focuses on helping individuals and families preserve and grow their wealth. In addition to its network of Financial Advisors and Client Specialists, Baird has a team of in-house specialists in such areas as retirement planning, charitable giving and estate planning who provide individualized help to clients.
Emily Phillips, a Financial Advisor for Baird PWM, the EWGA Treasurer on the Association board of directors and an EWGA member since 2011, approached a few of the key leaders within Baird’s PWM and Marketing groups with an idea for a potential partnership idea. At the time, Baird was looking for a company or organization they could work with to expand their audience of women, as well as an area Baird could potentially find women Advisors who would be interested in joining Baird.
“One of PWM’s key initiatives for years, now, has been to grow its female audience and find more women Advisors,” Emily explained. “Given my experience with the EWGA, and knowing the kind of great, rewarding relationships I’ve been able to build with the amazing ladies I’ve met through the EWGA, it seemed clear to our leadership here at Baird that the EWGA would be a good fit."
At the same time Baird was exploring the possibility of reaching out to the EWGA about a potential partnership, leaders within the EWGA were looking for a partner within the financial services industry. With the help of Emily, Baird emerged as a top candidate. However, there was another firm that EWGA leadership was considering; a larger firm with more name recognition.
Despite the appeal that would have come from partnering with a larger firm, EWGA leadership determined Baird was a better fit for a variety of reasons that outweighed its relative size.
“Baird and the EWGA have a lot in common in terms of culture; Baird’s clients are EWGA members and vice versa,” Emily said. “They operate similarly, with how they work with clients and how they treat their employees. Plus, working with Baird was much easier because of how flexible and nimble they are when coordinating partnerships. There’s less bureaucracy, which helps both sides maximize the benefits of working together.”
So with both sides working on making the partnership a reality, the last piece in the puzzle was getting the resources in place to close the deal. As it turns out, the timing was impeccable, because Baird PWM had just allocated a new budget for the BWA – Baird’s Women Advisors – and their marketing efforts. Given that allocation, Baird PWM, working with the BWA, had the resources in place to engineer the partnership.
“It was the first time the BWA actually had a pre-determined marketing budget, so all of the work we had done to identify a partner and work with the EWGA on what a sponsorship would look like was a worthwhile effort that eventually led to a great partnership,” Emily explained.
With much of the heavy lifting out of the way – shared interest in a partnership, resources in place and a relationship structure outlined – the two sides finalized the commitment in early 2017 and Baird officially became the Presenting Sponsor of the 2017 EWGA Cup Series.
Throughout the year, Baird Women Advisors have been given the opportunity to join the EWGA as members, meet with their local chapters, build relationships with new, professional women and, of course, play some golf! And with a successful partnership in the books and a relationship to continue into the future, Baird PWM continues to grow its BWA marketing effort to help grow its female audience.