In 1992 Warren Schulten began advising clients on the West Coast after working on Project Apollo as an employee of NASA. Two decades after starting a Long Beach-based wealth advisory firm, his son Mark Schulten joined the team and rebranded the entity to The Schulten Group, now known as TSG Wealth Management.
Under the duo’s leadership TSG has expanded beyond its California roots and into neighboring markets in Sunbelt states. Schulten’s firm is now one of the largest in the Wells Fargo & Co. advisor network.
Please tell us about your career. For example, what jobs have you done in the past and how did they lead you to this job? What are your current job duties and how long have you done them? How many hours do you work each week?
I’ve been in the investment world for over five decades, but I actually started my career in aerospace. I grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and graduated from Xavier University with a degree in physics, followed by an MBA from Purdue in industrial management. At the time, it was popular to pursue a major in the sciences due to the launch of Sputnik. In 1962, I moved to California to work on Project Apollo with NASA.
Putting men on the moon and bringing them home was a heavy job, and after a couple years I decided to change careers. My father was an active investor, and I always had an interest in the stock market. In 1965, I joined E.F. Hutton’s financial advisor training program.
My son Mark joined my practice in the early 90s, and now we are an independent wealth management team with Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network named TSG Wealth Management, which stands for The Schulten Group. We’ve achieved unbelievable growth thanks to Mark, his partner Allen Schreiber, and our CEO, Brian Borst. We now have 16 offices and over 100 employees.
Currently, I keep in touch with our long-time clients and work approximately 20 hours a week.
You are still working well past the age many people retire. Why?
I absolutely love the business. One of my favorite parts of the week is reading what the pundits have to say about the markets, interest rates, etc. on Saturday mornings.
What’s the best part of working in your 80s? Please describe the pleasure or satisfaction you get from working.
I think it’s good to keep the brain working and I enjoy being around younger people. When my wife and I are not traveling I try to come to the office every business day to keep in touch with the team members and clients. In my opinion, staying active both mentally and physically is good for everyone. It sure beats talking about your health problems.
And the worst?
I wouldn’t say anything is the worst or even negative at all.
Have you slowed down on the job or are you still putting in the same number of hours as always?
I have definitely slowed down my work schedule, now putting in about 20 hours per week. However, keep in mind that we’re in the relationship business. A lot of the work is done outside the office, meeting people, staying active in the community, and so forth.
Do you think you’ll ever retire? If so, at what age?
I’ll be 85 in January, and I hope to continue working for a few more years. After that, who knows!
If you were to retire, what do you suppose you’d do with your time?
When I do retire, my hope is to stay active playing tennis and golf. I’d also like to take more time to be involved in the community or doing charitable work.
What advice would you give to someone who was weighing whether to continue working past retirement age?
Everyone is obviously different, but I would advise people past retirement age to think hard about other activities they’re interested in – both mental and physical.
If you had to do all over again, knowing what you know now, what would you do differently in your career?
I’ve been blessed in many ways, and I wouldn’t change a thing.
What’s one of the biggest lessons you learned from your time on the job?
Listen more and talk less.