On Using Assessments to Screen Prospects

While visiting Santa Cruz last year in August at the FPA Far West Roundup, I stepped into a surf shop on the wharf and saw a magic 8-ball for sale (I’m still not exactly certain what magic 8-balls and surfing have to do with each other). I hadn’t seen one of these things in quite some time, and it reminded me that, much like many of the other toys and games our children play with, the[…]

Structuring The Getting to Know You Process

Imagine that you can ask your prospective client only two questions before deciding if they are a good fit for your practice. What would you ask, and why? The statement above is an example of a structured interview question. Structured interviews are a systematic way to get to know a client, applicant, or other new colleague that links interview questions to topics or competencies that are critical to understand at the beginning of that relationship.[…]

Value Above Technology: Advisors as Coaches

Executive coaching is estimated to be a $1 billion industry. These counselors, psychologists, and former “C-level” executives coach leaders to build competencies and skills required to be effective and successful at their high-level, high-stakes job. While coaches use technologies and numerous methodologies to assist in their practices, personal interaction is at the heart of the business. Like a C-level role, the job of household money management is multi-faceted, and includes many complex tasks: budgeting, creating long-term goals, investing, estate[…]

Inter-generational Wealth Transfer Woes

A hot topic in the financial advisory space—or maybe more accurately a sore subject—is the high rate of attrition of heirs when clients die and leave their managed wealth to beneficiaries. We have discussed this topic before, noting that a host of factors are at play including critical features like communication with the family-economic unit, relationship building, and personal differences resulting from a generational divide between the heirs and the advisor. But at the end of[…]

The Value of Client Behavioral Management

All of the studies and resulting data that have looked at the issue appear to agree that client behavioral management is one of—if not the most—important functions of financial advisors. In one of the seminal research studies—although not technically an inquiry into the role of financial advisors in relation to client behavioral management—the researchers concluded that of all the activities undertaken by large corporate pension fund managers, strategic portfolio allocation accounted for on average 93.6% of[…]