PDS Planning Employee Spotlight – Alyssa Anderson

Growing up in a small town in Iowa, Alyssa Anderson graduated with a finance degree from The University of Iowa in 2009 before relocating to Columbus and joining the PDS Planning team. She has been with PDS for more than 12 years and considers her coworkers as part of her extended family.

As a Planning Analyst, Alyssa serves as a key point of contact for clients on a daily basis, providing assistance as needed and addressing questions and concerns when they arise. In addition to actively participating in client meetings and managing any post-meeting action items, Alyssa coordinates the analytical review of clients’ various planning needs on an ongoing basis, leads pre-meeting work sessions, and finalizes meeting preparations.

At PDS, we are proud to have a team of forward-thinking leaders, expert planners, and staff who approach our clients’ financial decisions the same way we approach investing our own money. Learn more about Alyssa’s role with PDS, as well as about how she spends her time away from work.


How do you think PDS is different from other financial planning firms?

I think PDS is different from other financial planning firms because we truly have our clients’ best interests as our top priority. Our fee-only approach helps to support the work that we do, in addition to being what is best and most fair for our clients.

While the fee-only approach certainly makes PDS different, I think there is more to it than just the costs associated with our services. Our fee-only approach is just one way that we try to simplify things for our clients, which is really our primary goal. Even when what they’re asking for may not seem like a big deal to us, we understand by handling it we can make things easier for them and we are happy to do it.


What is your favorite aspect of working at PDS?

I really enjoy my coworkers. There has always been a sense of being part of the “PDS family” that I just love and reinforces the teamwork-driven focus in our processes.

In addition, we have wonderful clients. Not only do we focus on their financial plans, but we look forward to catching up with them to find out what’s new and going on in their lives. I love hearing updates about kids, grandkids, pets, vacations, family events…all of it! Of course, the half-day Friday schedule we follow year-round is a solid perk, too!


Do you see anything new on the horizon of the financial planning industry?

Technology will continue to play a huge role in our industry – which is great and is beneficial by allowing tasks to be completed with greater ease and efficiency. Initially, I thought this greater use of technology and access to digital information may encourage people to invest on their own and choose not to work with a financial advisor. But, I’m finding in my personal experience, this is not the case.

I continue to see younger generations get more involved in their finances at an earlier age and seek out the expertise and experience offered by an in-person advisor. While there are many options to set it and forget it with electronic programs, I anticipate we see an increase in early investors who will continue to seek out the help of a financial advisor while perhaps doing some initial, independent research to get started.


Tell us about your family.

I’m very excited about the newest additions to my family, as I got engaged to Brent this past December! I became a very passionate and somewhat cliché dog mom almost two years ago when we adopted our pup, Leo.

I grew up in a small town in Iowa – what I call the postcard version of Iowa – and the majority of my family is still in that area, which means I love trips to visit family and friends.  I am the youngest in my family with three siblings – a sister and two brothers. My parents still live in the home that I grew up in, and my sister and one brother live close by. I also am an extremely proud aunt of two nieces and a nephew and spend a fair amount of time bragging about their accomplishments.

My other brother lives in Columbus, and I can’t thank him enough for putting Columbus on my radar and being the reason I decided to move here!


When you are not working, how do you like to spend your free time?  

Brent and I have been checking out a lot more of the Columbus Metro Parks lately to take Leo on walks on the various trails. I love to be outside in general – whether being active or simply hanging out in the sun on a nice day.

I love days when I’m able to have my hour at the gym – a good workout is a mood booster for me. I’ve been a distance runner for quite some time now. I completed my 12th half marathon in April of this year, my goal is to keep doing them as long as I’m able!

We also enjoy trying out new restaurants and going back to the ones we know we already love.

I’ve recently started reading much more and love getting hooked on a good book! I’m always up for a game of cards if anyone wants to play (any kind – teach me if I don’t know the game!).


Are you involved with PDS Cares?

Yes, and I’m so very grateful for this program. I’ve been able to contribute additional funds to organizations that mean a lot to me with the funds that we’re able to give through PDS Cares. I can’t say enough how amazing it is that the partners make this available and that my coworkers are all excited about the opportunity to give!

Particularly close to my heart is Stop the Suffering, which is the Columbus-area rescue where we adopted Leo from. And while I love supporting the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio with my fellow PDS team members, I also give directly to the Ronald McDonald House in Iowa City through PDS Cares because I have friends who relied upon the House during a difficult time in their lives.



Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that any specific investment, strategy, or product or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this newsletter, will be suitable for your individual situation, or prove successful. This material is distributed by PDS Planning, Inc. and is for information purposes only.  Although information has been obtained from and is based upon sources PDS Planning believes to be reliable, we do not guarantee its accuracy.  It is provided with the understanding that no fiduciary relationship exists because of this report.  Opinions expressed in this report are not necessarily the opinions of PDS Planning and are subject to change without notice.  PDS Planning assumes no liability for the interpretation or use of this report. Consultation with a qualified investment advisor is recommended prior to executing any investment strategy. No portion of this publication should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a client of PDS Planning, please remember to contact PDS Planning, Inc., in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives.  All rights reserved.