Financial Experience Podcast

Ep. 47: Financial Wellness Grows Inside The Workplace

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Brian Nelson Ford, Head of Financial Wellness, Truist

On This Episode

“It doesn’t make sense to worry about things we can’t control because we can’t control them. On the other hand, it doesn’t make sense to worry about the things we can control because we can control them.” Brian Nelson Ford shared this key piece of advice on our recent podcast as a reminder to us all in periods of great uncertainty. He’s used this principle and others to build a personal finance education company that has become a key facet of workplace financial education inside Truist Bank.

Brian and Hunter discuss how the subject of personal finance can be intimidating and how it’s become one of the leading causes of stress. Ford saw an opportunity inside companies to improve their cultures, increase feelings of financial confidence, lower financial stress and, ultimately, save personal relationships. During his time in business school, the passion he had for personal finance led him to a lightbulb moment in creating a company called 8 Pillars. Ford’s 8 Pillars centered on research-based, affordable and deliver financial literacy in a fun, engaging way. He explored the actions of financially confident people, and he developed the 8 Pillars from their answers. These research-based principles enabled his company to cut through the white noise and information explosion that consumers face. And ultimately Suntrust Bank (and now Truist Bank) saw the benefits of integrating Ford’s philosophies into workplace financial education programs.

When asked what he is looking forward to in the coming years, retirement planning tops Ford’s list. One of the most exciting ideas to Ford is the integration of workplace financial wellness programs into HRIS. Teaching employees about the importance of emergency funds and continuing to normalize the trend of an employer-sponsored emergency savings account is what inspires him. 

Tune in to the latest episode of the Financial Experience Podcast to hear more on improving financial wellness through the workplace.

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More About Brian Nelson Ford

Brian Nelson Ford serves as the Head of Financial Wellness at Truist Financial Corporation. He assumed his current position in December 2019, upon the closing of the merger of equals between BB&T Corporation and SunTrust Banks, Inc. In his role, Mr. Ford is responsible for the design and implementation of internal and external financial well-being programs, including Truist Momentum, a financial wellness program for the companies of all sizes.

Mr. Ford served as Financial Well-Being Executive at SunTrust beginning in 2015. Prior to joining SunTrust, he was the founder and CEO of 8 Pillars Financial Education Company – one of the leaders in Workplace Financial Wellness. As a result, Mr. Ford has been widely recognized as one of the foremost experts on the design, implementation and measurement of Workplace Financial Education Programs for employees. He is often featured in national media publications, including: Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times, CNN, Yahoo Finance, CNBC, and Forbes.

Mr. Ford is an accomplished and well-respected author and speaker. He has authored The 8 Pillars of Financial Greatness, a book focused on helping individuals and families put their financial lives in harmony with their deepest values. He has also authored an award-winning children’s book titled Marshmallows and Bikes – Teaching Children (and Adults) Personal Finance. Among the companies that he has delivered keynote addresses to, include: The Home Depot, Holiday Inn, CFPB, Chevrolet, Overstock.com, Delta, 1800 CONTACTS, Toyota, Ancestry.com, eBay, Hilton.

Mr. Ford earned Bachelor’s Degrees in Business Management, and Marriage, Family & Human Development from Brigham Young University, as well as a Master’s Degree in Personal Finance from the College for Financial Planning.

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