Austin Streeper, North Star Resource Group
IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Austin Streeper, financial advisor, North Star Resource Group.
What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?
The most challenging is time management. As any business owner will tell you, there are a million different things that fall under the title of “job.” The key is figuring out where to allocate your time most efficiently to help you reach your goals. Luckily, I have a partner/mentor, team, and amazing spouse to help keep me on track, but there is still not enough time in the day. I am continually learning from mistakes to improve time efficiency.
There are two things that are extremely rewarding aspects of my job. First is scheduling freedom (which is exactly why time management is so challenging). Being able to adjust my calendar to spend time with my wife, chaperone a field trip with one of our boys, or even just watch them at a sports practice is amazing. Second is the happiness of reaching client goals. I love the “puzzle” that various client situations pose and the game plan to solve them. As I dig into things, their goals become my goals. Nothing compares to that meeting or email response when a client realizes they will accomplish whatever goal we started planning for potentially decades in the past.
Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?
I have great admiration for my colleagues on the Emerging Leadership Board at UW Carbone Cancer Center, especially the ones who have fought and defeated cancer. They are all extremely successful in their field yet find a way to use their resources to give back. They push me to do more.
What has been the high point of your career so far?
Starting my practice from scratch in a city where I didn’t know anyone took a lot of hard work and sleepless nights. Having that practice be successful, maintain double-digit growth every year, and building it the right way, is a result that I am very much proud of. So, I think I’m at the high point of my career [right now], and I expect to redefine that goal as I continue to surpass it.
Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?
It’s kind of weird to think back on my career when, in my opinion, I still have a lot of career in front of me. However, if I could give my 21-year-old self advice, I’d say embrace what you are good at and be open to taking risks. Determine how you can utilize your skills to accomplish your goals and don’t be afraid to take a risk to get there.
What would you say are the best things about living and working in Dane County?
There are numerous local and national articles that highlight a lot of great things about Dane County. That’s why we moved our family here. However, one thing I found over the last decade living here that is not on that list is the people. There are so many people that truly care about improving life in Madison and Dane County. Not only do they care, they act to make this a better place for everyone.
Do you have any secret talents or abilities that people would be surprised to discover?
Growing up on a dairy farm taught me fantastic problem-solving skills that still come in very handy today, but if I had to pick a secret talent it would have to be sewing. It comes in handy when fixing small things around the house, but to be honest I use a tailor for most stuff. It’s just quicker. Another secret talent that I use more often nowadays would be brewing beer. I didn’t really seek this skill out but kind of fell into it when we bought our home. My neighbor was already an experienced homebrewer and I had a modified fridge that could accommodate kegs. Kegs, as I would learn, makes brewing a lot quicker and easier, so we started brewing together. He would provide the brewing expertise and I would provide the storage. Thanks to my neighbor, our batches came out pretty good, which led to friends and family requesting batches for various events.
What are your guilty pleasures?
I guess my sports team allegiances would qualify here since we are in Wisconsin. Growing up, we only got about five channels on the TV, with one of them being WGN. Since the Cubs were always on WGN, I got to hear Harry Caray call games and over time I became a fan of the “lovable losers.” One of my most memorable moments of being a fan is when I drove to Cleveland with some friends for games one and two of the 2016 World Series. It was amazing.
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