Bob Rubin was our guest on Episode 65 of the Agents of Innovation podcast. He is the founder and President of Rubin Wealth Advisors, a financial advisement and management firm with headquarters in Boca Raton, Florida
With more than 30 years of experience in wealth management, it was only five years ago that Bob inverted his business from a focus on life insurance to one of financial advising. This was mostly a response to his clients’ needs, the evolution of the market demands, and how he zeroed in on the types of clients he wanted to focus on.
For the most part, Rubin’s ideal clients are 50-something year-olds that are successful and comfortable with technology, who want things done quickly and easily. Rubin Wealth Advisors also services many baby boomers who are reinventing retirement. He told us the story of a client who retired at age 75 but was quickly bored and decided to go back to working a few days a week. Bob is also interested in working with entrepreneurs, especially those who have start-up businesses that are in the $5 million to $40 million revenue phases. With this focus in mind, most of the marketing material from Rubin Wealth Advisors is prepared for these kinds of clients. It helps keep Bob and his team focused on the kinds of clients they want to work with.
“We are really all about the entrepreneurs,” said Rubin. He takes a keen interest in asking entrepreneurial clients about the obstacles they face and the ones they have overcome to help them be the best they can be in both their business and their personal finances.
“The thing that makes this country really cool is we have the ability and the right to be unequal, to be better than the person next to us, to work harder, and we don’t have a caste system, we don’t have a class system here. It doesn’t matter who you are. You don’t even have to have a degree, you can just work really hard, maybe a little bit of luck, a lot of elbow grease, and you can build a business, and overcome those obstacles, because building a business is really hard. It’s a really hard thing to do, and being able to overcome those obstacles – and it’s not just about going around the wall, or over the wall, but it’s going through the wall. I admire that.”
“Entrepreneurs really are either just optimists – everything is great – or they go into depression,” said Rubin. “Being an entrepreneur is a very lonely existence sometimes because you don’t have somebody to talk to; you might need to go out and raise money. When you go out and raise money, you gain a superpower. You learn who your friends really are.”
He also reminded us that, “All the aspects of being an entrepreneur – the risk-taking, it’s both exciting and exhilarating, but it’s also scary and lonely at times. So, a lot of times we offer emotional support to these guys because they just need to talk something through. They’re scared, but ready to do something big.”
A graduate of the University of South Florida, Bob has served on the board of trustees of Florida Atlantic University since 2010. He spoke to us about the two charter schools that are located on Florida Atlantic University’s campus in Boca Raton. The K-8 school, Alexander D. Henderson University School, has been rated the second-best school in the country; it is also a Google lab school. FAU High School has been rated the seventh best high school in the country. Both of these schools are in their own unique school district under Florida’s Department of Education.
“It’s great for the kids at Henderson and for the FAU (college) students,” he said. Because it’s a charter school, it’s a sampling of about 800 students of all ethnic and economic backgrounds who are getting exposed to a college environment. And, in some cases, there are students at FAU High School who are graduating high school and college at the same time.
FAU also has an innovation and entrepreneurship program called FAU Tech Runway. Start-ups will house themselves there, with complimentary space and mentorship. In the FAU business school, led by Dean Dan Gropper, there are entrepreneurial programs such as start-up competitions and elevator pitch programs, with cash prizes, along with trying to get many of their students into internships and learn things that are useful to employers. The FAU business school will bring in employers of large industries in the area to ask them what they are looking for in future employees.
Bob’s son, Scott, who is 27 years old, has Autism. “Scott is the coolest,” said Rubin. “He didn’t speak until he was 14 years old, he was completely non-verbal.” Scott now works two jobs. He rides his bike to the bus stop and takes the bus to work.
For the past seven years, he has worked for Alltech, where he tags and sorts clothing. “This is pretty special that a special needs adult has a job that long because the unemployment rate in the special needs community is somewhere between 80 and 90 percent,” said Rubin. Scott also works at Rocco’s Tacos as a dishwasher and “he brags about it,” said Rubin. “He laughs while he works, he thinks it’s the greatest thing.” A proud father of three boys, Bob lights up when talking about Scott. “What God gave him, he uses better than all of us,” said Rubin. “He’s just a special, special person.”
Bob’s wife, Michelle, founded a group called Autism After 21, which works on lifestyle changes and employment training to help people in the special needs community to get jobs. She has a camp that runs on the FAU Boca campus that serves about 120 young adults with Autism each year – they generally range from high school to college age. It is funded by private donors and also gets support from a state agency called Vocational Rehab.
“She’s having some success with both teaching employers the special things you need to do to have to employ a person like this and then teaching the potential employee the potential employee, the applicant, what they need to do to be a good employee,” said Rubin.
Bob Rubin closed his interview on the Agents of Innovation podcast by talking to us about what he believes are the keys to success for any businessperson. It all revolves around customer service: Show up on time, do what you say you’re going to do, say please, and say thank you for the business or thank you for the opportunity.
“I think if you if you do those four things, it’s a key to success in business,” said Rubin. “If you do those four things, you’re ahead of 99 percent of the people.”
To listen to our full interview with Bob Rubin, tune in to Episode 65 of the Agents of Innovation podcast, which can be heard on Apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Stitcher, SoundCloud, or wherever you listen to podcasts. You can also follow the podcast on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. We welcome your comments below and encourage you to write a review on Apple podcasts!