Enjoy the current installment of “weekend reading for financial planners” – this week’s edition kicks off with the latest of DoL fiduciary news, including the revelation that the Justice Department does not intend to defend the “class action lawsuit” provision of the fiduciary rule in the current Appeals lawsuit that fiduciary opponents have filed, a memo from LPL that indicates it expects the DoL fiduciary rule to stick and will be limiting the ability of its brokers (but not those on its RIA platform) to solicit 401(k) rollovers (suggesting that LPL may be pivoting its entire business to be more RIA-centric), and an announcement from Raymond James that it will be converting the payout grid for its independent channel to be entirely “product-neutral” with just a straight revenue-based payout (starting at 81% and rising as high as 90% for top producers).
From there, we have a few practice management articles this week, including a look at when to think about using debt proactively as a business management tool in advisory firms (especially since private equity investors often demand more in dividend payments than lenders demand in interest payments!), when you consider soliciting input from clients when making a potentially significant business decision, and how to create a “Client Retreat” event to deepen the relationship (and the breadth of solutions) for your clients.
We also feature several articles specifically focused on finding work-life balance, whether as an advisory firm owner or an advisor employee, including how to approach the work-life balance question as an employer (it’s all about setting clear expectations of what it takes to succeed in the firm), how to change your situation if you’re an employee unhappy with your balance (it’s all about starting the conversation with your firm/supervisor about what you want to change, and discussing ways to make it work for both parties), and how financially successful “lifestyle practices” can actually be (the idea that a lifestyle practice with good work/life balance can’t also be profitable is a myth… at least when done right!).
We wrap up with three interesting articles, all from people who have experienced early retirement or extended sabbaticals, talking about what they learned that surprised them about retirement (or a “faux retirement” sabbatical) in their first year. Key points included that more time at home makes it far easier to eat healthy and exercise more, but that the “best” days are still the ones where there’s something to “do” when you wake up, that you may find even more opportunities coming to you once you’re retired (which means you need to be careful to figure out what filters you will use to decide whether to say “yes” or “no” when they come along!), and that while you’ll have more time to deepen spousal and other family relationships, don’t underestimate how much you may miss the social environment and camaraderie of your “work family” as well!
Enjoy the “light” reading!