Enjoy the current installment of “weekend reading for financial planners” – this week’s edition kicks off with the news that New Jersey is about to launch its own version of a fiduciary rule for advisors, driven not by New Jersey legislators but directly from the New Jersey state regulators, as a state-level fiduciary movement appears poised to surge again in the face of federal regulators failing to address the fiduciary gap.
From there, we have a number of additional articles of notable industry news, including: the SEC’s ongoing hiring freeze is threatening to reverse its recent increase in the examination rate, as by 2019 it’s projected there will only be 1 SEC staff member for every 20 RIAs the regulator oversees; state securities regulators continue to step up on regulation and enforcement, with actions against unregistered individuals reaching a new record in past year (likely as a result of the surge of fraudulent cryptocurrency offerings); the College for Financial Planning has partnered with US SIF to launch a new sustainable, responsible, and impact investing designation (the Chartered SRI Counselor, or CSRIC); and the CFP Board’s Center for Financial Planning is partnering with Wharton on a new course in Client Psychology.
We also have several practice management articles this week, from a look at how hybrid robo-advisors and their salaried employee advisor jobs are providing a new career track alternative for financial advisors, to the importance of getting good at retention of existing advisor employees (given the incredibly high cost of turnover for experienced employees), a deep-dive look at what it really means to “manage” a client relationship, and an exploration of whether financial advisors should be learning more “conflict resolution” skills to help clients (especially couples and families) navigate their money conflicts.
We wrap up with three interesting articles, all around the theme of recognizing that we must sometimes embrace imperfection: the first is a powerful reminder that going beyond about 80% of the way on “surface shine” is rarely about actually improving the outcome and more about just satisfying ourselves; the second discusses how we often look to experts and their habits to figure out an optimal approach to something new when the truth is that we really need to just get started (because the “optimal” is rarely necessary to start!); and the last explores how the key to improving over time is to recognize that failures will happen, and those who improve the most are the ones who are willing to actually talk about them, and avoid the natural tendency to just sweep the embarrassment under the rug and move on before we have a chance to actually learn from the experience.
Enjoy the “light” reading!