Matt Griffin likes to talk in analogies — as if he's a football coach and his clients, the team owners. The goal, he says, is they'll trust him to make the plays that bring the big win for their retirement-even if that means they're coming from behind with few assets to start, and just 10 to 15 years before they hope to retire.

"As the owner, you discuss risk with me, and we'll talk about how we can win the game conservatively or moderately, but it's up to me to pick the players," says the financial consultant and program manager at Family Trust Federal Credit Union in Rock Hill, S.C. (LPL is the third-party marketer.)

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