Episode 03 - Investing and Delegating

Uncategorized Sep 30, 2022

 

Episode Notes

Kevin Mailo, co-founder of Physician Empowerment, talks with another fellow co-founder, Dr. Dimitre Ranev, about finance and investing. Dimitre is also co-host on the Primary Medicine podcast and along with being a practicing physician, gives talks on stocks, tax planning, and the like.

Dr. Ranev acknowledges that he wasn’t always knowledgeable about financial health. He credits Kevin with spurring him into the initial research which is when he discovered he had an affinity for it. He invests in equities, crypto, and is looking at moving into real estate as well. While he manages his portfolio himself, he stresses that not everyone is equipped to do so or will enjoy it.

In this episode, Kevin Mailo and Dimitre Ranev discuss the journey towards financial savvy and how wealth is about more than simply money. While Dimitre enjoys managing his own finances, Kevin does not, and they encourage anyone who would rather not stress about their investing to delegate that task to a professional. Every successful athlete has a team behind them and according to Dimitre, physicians are no different. It’s just as important to care for your mental health and the wealth of your well-being by putting your best support team in place.

 

About Dr. Dimitre Ranev

Dr. Dimitre Ranev is a family physician based out of Ottawa, Ontario, and Gatineau, Quebec. He is a  faculty lecturer at McGill University. He is a gifted teacher known for engaging his audience with clear, concise explanations. He is passionate about financial education, as it is the path to personal and professional freedom. 

Resources discussed in this episode:

Physician Empowerment: website | facebook | linkedin

Dr. Dimitre Ranev | Medical Doctor / Faculty Lecturer at McGill University: linkedin 

 


 

Transcript

Kevin Mailo  

Hi, I'm Dr. Kevin Mailo, and you're listening to the Physician Empowerment Podcast. At Physician Empowerment, we're focused on transforming the lives of Canadian physicians through education and finance, practice transformation, wellness, and leadership. After you've listened to today's episode, I encourage you to visit us at physempowerment.ca - that's P H Y S empowerment.ca - to learn more about the many resources we have to help you make that change in your own life, practice, and personal finances. Now on to today's episode.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Hi there. I'm Dr. Kevin Mailo, one of the cofounders of Physician Empowerment and one of the cohosts of the Physician Empowerment podcast. And I am so excited to bring to you today another cofounder/cohost, Dr. Dimitre Ranev. And Dimitre is very close friend of mine. We did family medicine training together all those years ago at McMaster family practice in downtown Hamilton. It's been a lot of years of friendship, and starting Physician Empowerment together and podcasting together on the Primary Medicine podcast. And so I'm so excited to launch our newest project, which is the Physician Empowerment podcast. So Dimitre, why don't you introduce yourself, share a little bit about yourself, talk about your practice. Tell us a little bit about who you are.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

Yeah, sure. So that's still my practice first. Currently, I practice in both Quebec and in Ontario, I live in Ottawa, but I cross the bridge to Gatineau, which is the small town across the river. And I am a family doctor but I found a niche, which is that I do trans care and sexual health. In fact, I teach those topics at McGill University as well. So that's my sort of my medical hat. In Ottawa, I work for Executive Health, I'm part of the Telus Health team, where I get to meet executive people and actually do the good old medicine, you know, spending half an hour with somebody, forty minutes, new preventive care, which you don't have time to do anymore. But at least I get to do that in Ottawa. And I learned a lot from these people, because they're executives, they're motivated and talking to them is always very illuminating experience. And there's a lot of wisdom. So I'm very fortunate to be exposed to that as well. But I'm also involved with Physician Empowerment. I'm also involved with the Primary Medicine podcast, I love podcasting. I love talking to people. I love learning things from people. And that's why I'm excited that we're starting this because we have a lot of interesting people to talk to. Colleagues and so forth.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Yeah, there's so much there. So we graduated over 10 years ago, we entered practice over 10 years ago. Why don't you go ahead and tell us a little bit about your financial journey. So you educate in finance, you are, you know, a teacher in finance. And Dimitre, for those of you that have not been to one of our conferences, does some incredible talks on tax planning, as well as the markets. So equities, bonds, crypto, you do so much, and you know so much, but I know you weren't always there. So why don't you go ahead and share a little bit about your journey on that path to finance.

 

Dimitre Ranev 

Yeah, so it's interesting. The path to finance was spurred on by you. Because before the idea of the Physician Empowerment came up, my financial background was put your money and cash in the bank and collect interest. That was my retirement plan. But when you sat down and said, listen, we need to do this project. Doctors are not financially literate. And this is an issue because it's affecting their livelihood and retirement. That's when I sat down and started looking at investing, looking at investing in stocks and bonds. And I love this stuff. I was like, I was skeptical. I didn't think I'd love it. I don't know, maybe you felt something in me because you asked me to do this part of the of the talk. But I was so immersed. And you know, I made this huge presentation. And it I felt like that was me, like teaching this and understanding this was me, I felt in the flow of things. And you know when you work on something, and it doesn't feel like work. That was me when I was doing that. So I thank you for all this financial education, I wouldn't have started that journey unless you had spurred it on. But I feel like it's something that I love doing. I love teaching as well.

 

Kevin Mailo 

Yeah. And so you've done a ton. Like I said, you give this great talk on, you know, tax planning, you know, understanding the taxation system, which many of us do not understand. And these are things that none of us gets teaching in, throughout our med school and residency years. And unless you really go out and seek that information, you just don't know. And it's scary how much you don't know that you don't know. That was kind of the eye opener for me in finance. And I think that was probably it for you as well, Dimitre. So, you know, you're known nationally for your work as a financial educator of fellow physicians. Tell us about your own personal financial habits, right, you know, in terms of whatever you feel like sharing in terms of personal spending, and investing, crypto, some of these spaces that you've been in.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

Yeah, of course. I think one thing that I really want people to understand is that your investment journey is very personal. And you have to find out what works for you and what works for you may not work for everyone. And that's why it's important to talk to people and see what they're doing and learn from them. But personally, you know, I started off investing in mutual funds before I realized that perhaps wasn't for me. And currently what I do is I have an investment portfolio in crypto because I'm a millennial and that's what we do. And as I said in the conference, it's great practice for not freaking out, because crypto goes down 30% one day, and that's okay. So it's training, it's training to be strong, and not sell when you shouldn't. But most of my investments are in equities. So I do dividend investing, I do investing in index funds, and I use some technical analysis to try and, you know, have more control over when I buy and sell things. So that's most of my investment journey. I'm looking into investing in real estate, actual real estate, as well, because I think it's it's important to diversify, and have something more physical than, you know, ETFs and dividends, and also invest in precious metals. So I've touched a bit of everything really. I really have to get into real estate more, but I've touched a bit of everything.

 

Kevin Mailo  

That's outstanding. Yeah. And for those of you, again, that have been to our conferences, you'll know that Dimitre and I have this nice little rivalry between real estate and the public markets, going back and forth, because I really believe in real estate, but I do invest in equities as well. And so, Dimitre, you know, you manage, you day trade, or, well, I don't even know if I'm using the term correctly, you manage your own portfolio, right? You do self directed investing. Many physicians do it, but I can share with you, you know, having done this for years, many physicians do not do it well. yeah. And one of the things that I struggled with, when I briefly tried this, was, here I am working an exhaustive shift in the emergency department, I am out of mental bandwidth to spend analyzing, you know, my stock portfolio and trying to make plays here, right? And I just found that I was frankly tired and didn't have a head for numbers, still don't have a head for numbers, and ultimately delegated this off to a very high quality manager, which I am so much happier for. But I know there are physicians that are still trying to do it themselves because they want to save on fees. My own opinion is I don't necessarily think that's wise, not only in terms of, you know, the returns or potentially protecting you against some downside losses, like we're seeing this year on the market, but more just in terms of like, personal wellbeing, and work life balance, like do you really want to go and do a second job after your clinical work, managing your stock portfolio. But I know, Dimitre, you do this, and you do it very well. And you're respected for your work in this. Tell us a little bit about how you do it, right, like your headspace, you know, how you create time to do it, how you manage risk, which I think a lot of physicians struggle with as well is tolerating risk in their portfolios. So why don't you share a little bit about your perspective or your philosophy? How about that, in this space of self directed investing?

 

Dimitre Ranev  

That's a great question. And I would start by saying, what's really important is to know yourself, and to realize that doing your own investing, or self-directed investing, isn't for everyone, even though people tell everyone, you should do this because your fees are low. If you can't find the time to do it, then it makes sense to pay an extra fee for somebody else. If you don't enjoy doing it, or if every time you open your account, you're having a panic attack, then paying the extra fee to somebody to help you is fine because I realize that you need to have a team just like you know, an athlete has a team, right? They have doctors, they have psychologists, we have to have a team as well. And part of the team is somebody who helps with financial planning. It could be yourself if you like doing it, or a financial advisor or even a portfolio manager. So again, people need to realize that self-directed investing isn't for everyone, even though it's sold for everyone, it's not. In their headspace I'm in, I don't do day trading, by the way, that's a loser's game, unless you are really smart and you can do that for a living, you're not a doctor. You could say that I do swing trading or I mostly do trading on long periods of time. But it's about having a habit. It's about saying, I'm going to check the portfolio a specific day every month, I put it in my calendar, and it's the thing I need to do just like brushing my teeth or going for a run and exercise. And after a while you do that you have to have a habit, some kind of headspace where you're saying once a month, I'm going to check the portfolio, twice a month, I'm going to check the portfolio and you do it. And the thing is, the more you expose yourself to this the more comfortable you become and the easier it is. But that's my headspace. And that's not everybody's headspace. Again, you don't enjoy that. I don't think you would enjoy checking your portfolio once a month, right? So if you don't enjoy that, don't feel like you should be forced to. There's people that can help. And, again, how much is your time worth?

 

Kevin Mailo  

That's the big one.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

How much is your time worth? Yeah. It is that extra fee of 1% worth spending when you can be doing something else you enjoy, right? With your family or going for a run or going on vacation. Ask yourself that. I've learned that the hard way. Stuff I don't enjoy doing I just delegate now. I don't, I delegate, I don't enjoy doing some things. And I'm like, well, somebody else will do it for me,

 

Kevin Mailo  

And that, for myself personally, was a big growth step. But as physicians, we tend to micromanage. And I think it's a very good thing, when it comes down to procedural work, making sure that we're really taking that history carefully, getting to the diagnosis, looking real carefully at that CT or whatever. I get that, that's important, that's what we're trained for, that's we have to do. But when it starts to, you know, spread to other areas of our life, it can be really counterproductive, right? And, you know, hospital based physicians, we work with a whole team. Everybody from our registration clerks, to, you know, our cleaning staff, to our nurses, to nurse practitioners, we're all part of a team. And there's an element of delegation across all of that, you know, and people delegate up to me, or I delegate down to them, or whatever. And in our financial lives, it should be no different. And the really sophisticated investors, the really high net worth individuals, on the things they don't understand or do not want to do, and don't have the mental bandwidth to do it, they actually delegate out. They're happy to pay somebody...

 

Dimitre Ranev 

100%.

 

Kevin Mailo 

They're happy to pay somebody to make them more money. And I learned that the hard way in real estate, I used to manage my own doors. And my goodness, was that a lot of work. And I am so past that, right? And so much happier. Right? What I'm paying in management fees on my doors, way better than dealing with these things myself. So this is where delegation just isn't about creating wealth. It's about building a better life, because if you're not enjoying your life right now, then, like, what are you doing? Right? And that was the question I looked in the mirror and asked myself a few years ago. Like if I'm not happy now, when am I going to be happy? Delegation has been a big part of that, especially in my financial life. So I like sharing that. Because I think that's important. And many physicians struggle to get out of that micromanaging mindset.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

It's, yeah, we we do. And to me, it was a revelation as well. And it was through Physician Empowerment that it sort of... and from listening to people talk actually, again, in my executive health position, we have time to chat. And that's one thing that people say: delegate. Why am I happy right now, it's because I'm not dealing with every little thing. These guys have a team of 200 people under them, right? They can't deal with every little thing. They cannot micromanage, they'd go crazy. So it's something that you need to sit down and ask yourself, what can I do? What is possible in terms of my financial health? And if it's, and if I'm not comfortable doing this, finding somebod. There's lots of people that can help: financial advisors, portfolio managers.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Great accountants, tax lawyers, there's so much out there, like a bookkeeper, right? You know, small things like that. You know, that make such a big difference in our financial lives.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

I was listening to a podcast, a financial podcast about Tiger Woods. And it just, again, he has such a big team. Like he's a talented person, but he's talented enough to know that it takes a team to make this athlete, it takes a team to make a good doctor. Again, you don't want to be in a position where you're doing your finances, you hate doing it. And because you, something that happens, the stock market goes down 20%, you make a medical error because you're thinking about that as opposed to thinking about the patient in front of you, right?

 

Kevin Mailo  

Yeah, I remember that actually vividly from the 2008/2009 financial crisis. And I remember having preceptors that just couldn't get off their computers, constantly glued to their portfolios, constantly thinking out, you know, they were late walking into the room to go see a patient and remember, I was young back then, right? Like, I didn't have any money, I had debts, right? Is there any chance you're gonna wipe out my debts? Like, that's all I was thinking. Maybe the bank will crash and I don't have to pay those hundreds of thousands of dollars, right? That was the one hope I had. You know, and I remember, like, watching it affect them. And so these are the things that we need to be mindful of, right? Like, our success in our clinical careers really depends on where our headspace is.

 

Dimitre Ranev 

Exactly.

 

Kevin Mailo  

You know what I mean? And this is why Physician Empowerment is so much more than money and why we talk about wellness and practice management. Because, you know, when we are really, really working in internal harmony, we're very successful in our professional lives, and successful in our financial lives. And so being mindful of the effect of our finances on our practice and personal lives is so, so huge. It really truly is mindfulness.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

It is. I think I'm gonna just end by saying, and I was talking to Vu and he said something really, really important. You know, how he talked about tests having specificity and sensitivity, right?

 

Kevin Mailo  

Yeah. And sorry, let me let me just reference this is Vu Kiet Tran.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

Great guy.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Yeah, he's got his own podcast. He's an ER doctor based out of Toronto. But anyhow, continue.

 

Dimitre Ranev 

So tests have specificity and sensitivity. But doctors have specificity and sensitivity too. If a doctor is irritated, or in a bad mental state, his specificity for diagnosing something is not good. Like if you didn't sleep last night, because your portfolio cratered. And you're thinking about that you're not, you're gonna misdiagnose, right? You have your own specificity and sensitivity. So you have to take care of that. So you know, that's funny that going through this investing journey, that's what I learned the most, is just being mindful. Just being mindful, because the stock market is a brutal mistress. It's going to spit you out. It's going to tell... you know, you have this ego as a doctor, right? Like, I'm always right. The stock market doesn't care. She doesn't care about your feelings. It's a great educator, I think, if you can stand it. And I think it's been very productive in terms of making me more mindful and a better person. But if you don't enjoy that, you can learn this harsh thing other ways. So get somebody else to do it for you. I think that's my biggest advice. Be true to yourself. Sit down, ask yourself, do I really need to do self-directed investing? Do I enjoy it? Or can I find somebody else? So that's the first thing you need to ask yourself before you go into that.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Yeah, exactly. I love it. Absolutely love it. So listen, I think we're there. I'm not gonna keep you any longer. I absolutely love the episode, really excited that you're going to be hosting, you know, and bringing so many great stories, so many great experts forward to talk about finance.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

And, again, you see, they have their own personal journeys in investing. And I'm hoping that our audience can pick some things from them, and do things like they do, and see what works for them.

 

Kevin Mailo  

And there are many, many paths to wealth and financial security. So don't feel like you have to follow somebody else's. Dimitre and I have very different paths to financial security, and we're both doing great. You know, but I'm hoping to come over to a little bit of real estate.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

Yeah, I'm coming over. I'm coming over.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Yeah, I know. I know.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

I'm a believer.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Finally, finally, after years and years.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

What, seven years? Yeah, seven years.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Exactly. So listen, that's it. I just want to thank you.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

It was such a pleasure, Kevin, to talk to you and all the best.

 

Kevin Mailo 

Really loved it.

 

Dimitre Ranev  

Take care.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Thank you so much.

 

Kevin Mailo  

Thank you so much for listening to the Physician Empowerment Podcast. If you're ready to take those next steps in transforming your practice, finances, or personal well being, then come and join us at physempowerment.ca - P H Y S empowerment.ca - to learn more about how we can help. If today's episode resonated with you, I'd really appreciate it if you would share our podcast with a colleague or friend and head over to Apple podcasts to give us a five star rating and review. If you've got feedback, questions, or suggestions for future episode topics, we'd love to hear from you. If you want to join us and be interviewed and share some of your story, we'd absolutely love that as well. Please send me an email at [email protected] Thank you again for listening. Bye.





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