My name has always been a pillar of my personal story. At birth, I was given the name Shannon Toole. My first name was inspired by the Shannon River in Ireland — it’s the longest river in the country and its name means “wise river.” The story gets even more interesting from here: When I was five years old, my parents went to court and added the “O” to my last name, “Toole,” to re-establish our original name from when our ancestors came from Dublin.
Of course, this is always my go-to story when I’m in the middle of an ice-breaker game (it’s also great for “Two Truths and One Lie”) — but it actually stands for so much more.
Wisdom is a gift that I’ve come to appreciate; it’s the gift that we are given by fully embracing our life’s journey. A journey that, just like the Shannon River, is full of challenges (rocks), growth (tributaries), and destinations (estuaries). All of these points on our journey give us the stories that ultimately connect us to other humans, whether they are our clients, employees, or teams.
As a seasoned executive leader in the wealth management industry, I thrive on driving growth for firms through well-designed staffing and succession strategies, as well as programs that nurture the proactive development of their talent.
I graduated from the University of Missouri with a Bachelor of Science degree in Consumer and Family Economics. My career started at General Mills, where I was immediately drawn to learning how to attract and keep high-caliber talent. That curiosity quickly transitioned me into joining the world of head-hunting during the fast-paced dotcom technology boom. This is when I found my recruiter’s heart – something that still has me constantly seeing, directing and networking talent. After years focused on recruiting top talent, I began to expand my expertise to encompass all human resources and talent disciplines. In 2004 I brought my talents to the financial services industry, where I eventually rose to become the Chief Talent Officer of Buckingham Wealth Partners. There, I oversaw the growth of the firm from 75 to 500 people and scaled the organization from 1 to 40 offices nationwide.
During my tenure, I created engaging career paths, redesigned the performance management process to focus on strengths and continuous feedback, and implemented formal training programs that fueled the development of employees. I also provided B2B coaching for 150 small, independent firms. Through that particular experience, I discovered something:
I’m uniquely suited to work with financial advisory firms like yours — because I understand what motivates you and drives you forward every day.
The question is, how can you and your firm retain a team of talent in a world where your employees need to feel a sense of purpose and connection to their job? That’s where I come in. I can provide: