Today’s guest blog features Kenneth Unger, Founder of The Academy of Preferred Financial Advisors where he shares effective and efficient strategies on practice management, marketing, client servicing and business development. Unger strives to educate and motivate and has been featured in and appeared on numerous financial television and radio shows and periodicals. He is also the author of the best selling book, The Keys to High Level Production.
You’re a financial advisor, with a main focus on managing the wealth of your clients. But you’re also the owner and CEO of your company.
One of the biggest hurdles that lead to many a company’s demise is that most people are either good at one role or the other, not both. Although you may be a brilliant financial advisor, operating and owning a successful business may not come easy.
So, how can you not just manage, but have a flourishing symbiotic relationship between the two roles?
The good news is that finding the balance of being a successful financial advisor and business owner is achievable, without overextending yourself, with planning, a competent support team, and guidance.
Let’s take a look at the fundamental responsibilities of each role:
- Creating sustainable success and growth
- Making major decisions
- Managing overall operations and resources
- Being the main point of communication with other senior officers or team members
- Assuring client satisfaction
- Maximizing prospect generation
How can you unify these two very different roles and focus them on the same primary goals of your firm? How do you achieve this without exhausting yourself by working 60+ hours a week, skimping on vital tasks of the company or your responsibilities to your clients?
The most thriving businesses have strong core standard operating procedures they create and adhere to. These same core standards can help you achieve success in both your role as CEO and financial advisor. Three areas that you can work on now are planning for 2019, developing your professional support team, and finding guidance.
Planning for 2019
Failing to plan, is planning to fail.
You may have heard this quote time and time again. But have you done anything about it?
A critical part of your success is creating, understanding, and using a business/operating plan for 2019. You need a plan that clearly defines the strategic objectives of the company and the actions that will need to be taken to achieve those objectives.
Many financial planners tell their clients that people don’t plan to fail, they just fail to plan. As a financial advisor, it is your responsibility to help your clients define and realize their goals and needs. In order to do this, you must first follow your own advice: define your own goals and objectives and you will set the foundation of success for yourself and your clients. The planning process of your practice is a role that both the business owner and financial planner in you must complete.
Developing Your Professional Support Team
Your most important asset is human capital, or more lovingly called, your professional team. Your team members are who you delegate vital tasks to. They are responsible for positive interactions with your clients, maintaining and cultivating the vision and mission of your practice, and to uphold the ethics and integrity of your business. Your professional team is an indispensable feature of your company.
Your role is to be a leader they can confidently represent. You need to cultivate a workplace environment that encourages positive attitudes with growth-based and client-centric activities. If you set your team up for success and they will in turn help you be successful!
We can all use guidance in so many aspects of our lives, and advisors are no exception. The best athletes have coaches. Politicians have trusted coaches/advisors. The best businesses do not reach their full potential without the help and guidance of mentors and trainers. In this industry, there are many financial advisor coaches and trainers. At the Academy, we have found one of the main areas they fall short in is offering the advisor proven business operating tools and strategies that are specific for their business. At the Academy, in our training program, we not only help advisors learn valuable tools such as learning how to review a tax form, but offer an exclusive CEO Track. We do this because we find that many of the best-producing financial advisors are struggling to improve their operational efficiencies. Their goal is to run a thriving practice and having qualified guidance has proven to be vital for their success.
2019 is going to be a prime year for advisors to take advantage of the confusion investors are running into with today’s current market volatility. When you add in new tax laws, there is an even greater need for financial advisors to cultivate new business and solidify existing clients. Now is the time to embrace this opportunity! The amount of effort you put into your plan will put you in one of three categories: optimal, mediocre, or marginal. Which one do you want to be in? If you don’t have a plan yet, now is the time to take action! Are you ready to take your practice to the next level? Can you imagine making 2019 your best year? Don’t procrastinate…make it happen!