Once upon a time, virtually all financial planners were actually life insurance agents or mutual fund and investment brokers, who were compensated by selling products and perhaps gave a little financial advice on the side. Over the past several decades, financial planning has been pushing towards becoming a recognized profession, and its practitioners recognized professionals. At the same time, the business itself has become more complex, challenging, and time-intensive, a natural by-product of shifting from the sale of products to the delivery of advice. The net result of all these trends are a greater pressure than ever for financial planners to maintain high productivity levels.
In response, financial planners have sought out ways to make themselves and their firms more efficient - such as requiring clients to come meet at the advisor's office, or to dictate that clients must gather all their data up front and bring it already-fully-assembled to the planner - to manage the costs in terms of both their time and staff, in order to run a successful financial planning business. The reality, however, is that such strategies don't actually eliminate the work to make the planner more efficient - it simply delegates the work to the clients, and makes it their problem instead!
While such an approach may be necessary for some business models, it's less than ideal for many - especially firms that pride themselves on the quality of service they provide their high net worth clients! So what's the alternative? Instead of just delegating work to clients, reimagine how to turn these challenge points into true value-adds for the client, or better yet use some of the emerging technology in today's digital age to eliminate the problem entirely!Continue reading "Are Your Time Saving ... »