Braden Osten

Capitalizing on Clients’ Values

I work with a wide array of clients who rely on me to listen to and understand their past experiences, current challenges, and future aspirations. By truly listening, I can apply my financial expertise to help achieve those goals.

What inspired you to join Bernstein?

It became obvious to me during the interview process that the entire firm cares deeply about the caliber of advice we give to clients and even more so, how it is served. Another common link between every person I met was their unwavering confidence that Bernstein’s advice is unconflicted and unbiased. Reflecting on my own research and other firms I’d encountered, I recognized the rarity of this case. My earliest market experiences were during the depths of the Global Financial Crisis. This inspired me to largely focus my studies on the structural challenges the industry faces as a whole that oftentimes lead to biased or conflicted investor advice. Fortunately, I knew from Bernstein’s history that this would never be an issue as our only business has ever been investment management and advice. Maintaining that focus has allowed us to always give advice that is in the best interest of our clients. After all I’ve seen, that standard of integrity was of the utmost importance.

What is the most fulfilling aspect of being an advisor to your clients?

I feel fortunate to have been raised by parents that worked in finance and medicine. That upbringing lead to my belief that health and wealth are the most sensitive parts of our personal lives. I’m sympathetic to the stress one experiences when they do not have clarity or confidence around their financial well-being. Money can cause a laundry list of worries that I aim to reduce so my clients can focus on living fulfilling, healthy lives. I seize the opportunity to step in and help my clients “pre-experience” their financial future so they know what is next—and get down to the true essence of their wealth beyond the dollar values on a page. Listening to my clients describe their values and aspirations, such as providing educational opportunities for their children or passing a legacy to a philanthropic cause, and then illustrating the real-life implications of those choices is the most interesting and heartfelt part of my job.

If you didn’t work for Bernstein, what else would you be doing?

My background in finance and economics, coupled with the desire to help address existential, global challenges, such as the climate crisis and inequality, would accompany me onto another path. Also, after building my career at Bernstein, the value systems of an organization have become just as important to me as the actual work itself. So, naturally, a dream job would be to help lift up organizations and communities that are helping change the world. Some ideas for how to do this would be working with the World Bank to reduce global poverty or working in impact investing to help allocate investment capital to businesses that are addressing climate change or have been historically underserved. Both of these dream jobs would leverage my passion for finance and economics to try and make an impact in these existential crises. I believe that private investment capital is a key component to impacting many of today’s most pressing societal challenges.

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