The ClientWise Blog

Build Better Client Relationships: 5-Step Client Engagement Process

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Feb 3, 2016 4:26:09 PM

With tax season right around the corner, this is a time of year when many advisors are focused on annual and quarterly client reviews. The challenge, however, often lies in finding effective ways to use those important conversations as a means to uncovering new business opportunities. The solution can be found in establishing a predictable and effective partnering process.

At ClientWise, we’ve developed a proprietary 5-step client engagement process that help advisors have more successful and collaborative conversations with their clients.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Communication, Client Engagement

Take the Quiz: How Good Are Your Communications Skills?

Posted by ClientWise on Jan 28, 2016 12:00:00 PM

Communication skills are the most important skills that you need to be successful in any industry. For financial advisors specifically, being able to effectively communicate with clients or potential clients can make or break the relationships. When advisors take the time to focus on improving their communication skills, they witness better connections with clients and find it easier to differentiate themselves. 

So, advisor or not, we'd like to challenge you with this:

Just how good are your communication skills?

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Communication, Team Development, Client Engagement

3 Key Ways to Maximize Your Financial Advisor Marketing

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jan 21, 2016 4:25:32 PM

Far too many advisors view their firm website with the same sort of fear and trepidation that results in dated, uninspiring advisor websites that say very little and rarely change. The most successful wealth management teams out there are the ones who don't miss out on the lead generation opportunities that the digital world has allowed for. So…how does a financial advisor even begin to distinguish themselves and their practice through technology? 

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Marketing Approach, SEO

Why You Need a NextGen Advisor on Your Team

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jan 15, 2016 4:22:54 PM

Let’s get one thing perfectly clear – millennials are NOT the lazy, self-absorbed narcissists who expect you to hand them a VP title and a six-figure salary. About the only aspect of the millennial stereotype that is true, is that they are indeed a technology-driven generation of information sharers. Millennials are values-based individuals with a heightened social awareness – exceedingly cause-driven and deeply charitable.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Team Development

Social Media for Advisors: Silence is NOT Golden!

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jan 12, 2016 4:24:27 PM

No matter how capable of a writer you are, the simple truth is that it’s vital you have an opinion and are willing to share it. Your clients are counting on that. If you want to be an excellent client service partner and an exemplary marketer, you need to have a voice. But what steps do you need to take to get your voice out there? 

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Marketing Approach

What Skills Does Every Leader Need to Master?

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jan 6, 2016 3:13:31 PM

Love 'em or hate 'em, there’s no arguing that in an industry structured to create franchise parity through salary caps and free agency, the New England Patriots have consistently managed to achieve performance excellence for the better part of two decades – with no apparent end in sight. How? 

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Leadership, Communication

Durability, Profitability and Sustainability: What's the Difference?

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 29, 2015 4:13:43 PM

These are perhaps the three most important benchmarks by which wealth management practice success is truly measured. Yet, many advisors struggle with drawing clear distinctions between the three. It’s understandable, as there are a number of areas where the definitions overlap and tend to blur into each other.

The purpose of all three is the same – to help you make yourself less relevant in the day-to-day operation of your business. That may sound a bit jarring, I know, but understand that I'm not talking about making yourself any less important, just needed in different ways as your business evolves.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Financial Planning, Succession Planning

The Best Present to Give Your Family in 2016

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 22, 2015 2:11:10 PM

On behalf of the entire ClientWise team, I would like to wish a Happy Holidays to all of our friends and family! While traveling recently, I took some time to reflect on my year and all that I have to be grateful for. While it seems during this time of year that “presents” are all the talk, it is the time we spend together that truly makes the holidays. Don't get me wrong, presents are nice too. In case you're curious what's on my list for good ol' Saint Nick: I asked for an Apple watch, new running sneakers (does anyone call them sneakers anymore?), and some fun socks to wear with my work clothes. Yeah, that's right, you can never have enough socks. But what is the best gift I can expect to give and receive this year? 

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

The 9 Elements in Every Successful Financial Advisor Business Plan

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 16, 2015 12:14:55 PM

In our last blog, we focused on the turning of the calendar as an ideal opportunity to revisit your business plan, with an eye towards capturing more meaningful business metrics. A number of you, however, asked us to take a step back and devote some time to outlining the essential elements that make up any effective business plan.

While there are no defined rules regarding crafting a plan, keep in mind that your plan (much like the ClientWise Professional Advisory Model) is intended to map out your future business – the clients you want to work with, the needs and challenges you’re uniquely suited to address, the processes around solutions, and the team you will surround yourself with to deliver those solutions.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Organizing Priorities, Financial Planning, financial advisor business plan

Pt 1. Elevate Your Financial Advisor Business Plan

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 10, 2015 3:58:40 PM

You spend your days counseling clients as to the critical importance of careful and proper planning. Yet a great many of you either don’t have a business plan, or haven’t revised and updated it since you first started practicing. So ask yourselves a few questions: Does your firm today look identical to how it looked on Day One? Do you have the exact same service offering, same team members and same assets under management? More importantly, do you expect and desire the firm to evolve over the next five years?

Commit to making a fresh start to 2016 by dusting off your old business plan, meaningfully revising it, and actually using it for its intended purpose – a roadmap for your business. If you never actually wrote a business plan for your practice, it’s not too late to start. And it can be a tremendous opportunity to actively engage your team members in helping to shape your future firm. 

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Business and Operations Management, Business Development

Why Women are NOT a Niche Market

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 8, 2015 3:07:43 PM

I can’t begin to tell you how many financial advisors, when asked to identify their target niche market, will list women as one of their targets. 

How exactly can a group that represents more than half (51%) of the entire U.S. population possibly be considered a niche? Think about it for a minute. You would rightly scoff at any advisor who identified “men” as their target niche, yet for some reason, a great number of advisors feel that the majority of our population somehow qualifies as a niche.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: target market, women financial advisors, niche market

7 Sure-Fire Ways to Fail as a Leader

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 3, 2015 4:30:41 PM

It’s a simple fact – most attempts at building a highly interdependent team end in failure. Not as a result of bad people or lack of effort, but rather, because the leader never becomes a part of the team or leads from a team perspective. Instead, the leader holds himself/herself above the group, dictating policy and direction rather than building consensus and fostering team interdependence.

Surely, it makes sense, especially in the case of the wealth management world. Some advisors can attempt to transition from “Lone Ranger to Leader” on their own, but do not understand what it truly means to foster an interdependent team environment. The challenge comes in finding a clear way to impart and instill the right leadership behaviors. Sometimes, articulating what NOT to do can be a far easier, effective and compelling way to teach the right actions and activities.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

It Pays to Know Your Type

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Dec 1, 2015 3:24:22 PM

Building Better Team Cohesion and Communication 

Why do you do what you do? What motivates you and what causes you stress? How do you respond to conflict? How do others on your team differ? 

Self-awareness is the key to growth and improvement – both for you personally, as well as for your team. However, to genuinely understand your behaviors and motivators, you need an objective measurement tool. Relying on simple subjective assessment is just far too arbitrary, and often grossly inaccurate.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Team Development, Learning

Oh Baby! ClientWise Announces Newest Team Member

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Nov 30, 2015 1:37:21 PM

It is with great happiness and joy that ClientWise welcomes new team member, Brooke Suarez (Age: 12 hours). There will be a hefty onboarding process of diaper changing, 3am crying sessions, and lots of kisses for Brooke. The finders fee goes to our amazingly dedicated and hilarious Relationship Manager and her husband, Alessandra and Eliud (respectively). 

Jokes aside, congratulations to Alessandra and Eliud for adding the perfect gift for this holiday session. The team cannot wait to meet this beautiful new addition! She's so adorable, we figured the rest of our followers would love to see as well. 12 hours old and she's already set for her first hair-modelling commercial! 

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Growing Your Business with Purpose and Intent

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Nov 24, 2015 4:02:38 PM

Ask a large group of advisors to list their primary business goals, and odds are “growing my business” will be at or near the top of almost every list. But ask the same individuals WHY they want to grow their businesses and a great many may have difficulty in offering a compelling reason. For many of us, growth has been equated with success as far back as we can remember. Just as a shark that stops swimming ultimately dies, we’ve been conditioned to believe that a firm that stops growing will similarly wither away.

Instead of viewing growth as a goal, you need to start thinking about it as a means to an end. That’s what growth with purpose and intent is – growth aimed at helping you achieve and live the life you want, rather than merely growing for growth’s sake.

Read More

Enjoyed this article? Click here to subscribe!

ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Organizing Priorities, Leadership