On the first Wednesday of every month, the family law office of Phillips & Peters celebrates Women Crush Wednesday! These are not sponsored or paid posts – just women business owners we love to support that are crushing it in Hampton Roads.
Leadership gurus and business moguls alike will tell their captive followers the importance of knowing their “why”. As in, why do you do what you do? Why do you get up and go to work every day? Simon Sinek says “the why provides focus, direction, meaning, and confidence”. Cindy Arocho knows her why and it’s evident in the way she carries herself and conducts business.
As the Growth and Development Director of the financial services company, Northwestern Mutual, Ms. Arocho’s path has been an adventurous one. She started her educational journey at Princeton University before beginning her professional career on Wall Street. From there she found time to serve the less fortunate of Mozambique. During her time of service in Southeast Africa, she learned of Regent University. In due time it would be the knowledge of that private college that lured her to Coastal Virginia.
Cindy has been a part of the 757 for the past 11 years; the longest she has lived in any one place. A few years after earning her master’s degree she planned to move to Austria for diplomatic consulting. That plan was interrupted when offered a job at Northwestern Mutual by her financial advisor.
“I kept thinking this is just a distraction,” said Cindy. Between Virginia Beach and Austria, who wouldn’t pick Austria? But Northwestern Mutual could see the talent and heart of their client so they pursued her with hopes that she’d join the team. After a time of quiet reflection, Cindy decided to walk through the open doors. “Doors kept opening up one after another. I didn’t look for it. I didn’t want to do it. However, now that I’ve been here for going on 6 years I have seen where it has utilized my skills.”
Since that time Ms. Arocho has been soaring. She’s broken records and landed herself in top spots among her company over the years. She was recently recognized by the Virginia Pilot as a 2019 Women in Business honoree. You’ll quickly find that Cindy doesn’t do anything without purpose or heart. It’s easy to see how her understanding of her “why” is one element of her continuing success.
“I know why I’m here. I’m here to change the face of what financial planning looks like as a woman.”
Women make up only 11% of all financial advisors in the United States. A study conducted by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards “describes the paucity of women financial advisers as a ‘feminine famine’”. That percentage is even lower for minority women.
“I’m here to help other women know that this is possible for them.”
Inspired by the “Like a Girl” campaign by Always, Cindy personalized the concept and started the movement #PlanLikeAGirl. “I plan like a girl. The way I plan with my clients is going to be very different compared to how some men plan with their clients and it’s not weak, it’s not wimpy. It’s very strong and very unique. Other women need to know they don’t need to be like the men in their office to be a great financial advisor. They can plan like a girl and do well.”
What started as an in-office and local movement eventually found it to the national Northwestern Mutual stage at the annual meeting. #PlanLikeAGirl T-shirts now sell in the NW Mutual online store with all the profits going to support a non-profit called Wrestle Like A Girl.
Ms. Arocho noted that when work gets hard and overwhelming, she can press on because she knows her why. “I want to bring integrity back into the industry. And personally, I know I’m supposed to build schools. I am to make money to help build schools in Eastern Africa and Eastern Europe.”
Knowing the hard-working and ambitious nature of Cindy Arocho we have no doubt that she will accomplish this dream and many others in her career. We’re thankful for the talent she brings to this area and the progress she lives out in her industry. We hope that you are encouraged by her journey and continue to live out your purpose and find your “why” in whatever you do.