The ClientWise Blog

Is Your Next-Gen Talent Here to Stay?

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Oct 12, 2016 8:30:00 AM

With nearly half of the advisor population (43% according to Cerulli) over the age of 55, it raises two critical questions. Who’s going to take care of all your clients when you finally decide to retire? And how are you going to be able to successfully monetize your life’s work? The short and simple answer for the vast majority of advisors is to step up and do a far better job at cultivating and nurturing the next generation. 

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Topics: Succession Planning

When’s The Right Time to Sell Your Business?

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Sep 27, 2016 11:50:00 AM

A mere 3% of today’s advisors have a written continuity plan to protect their business (and more importantly their clients’ best interests) in the event of their death or disability. Fewer than one in three (31%) advisors age 60 or older have a formal written succession plan in place. For a profession that prides itself on planning and preparing clients for the future, most of you are doing a pretty horrible job when it comes to planning your own.

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

Topics: Succession Planning, Business and Operations Management

Is Your Kid the Right Succession Plan for Your Business?

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jun 15, 2016 4:17:02 PM

Perhaps no generation is as misunderstood as millennials – the people who represent the future of our financial services business. We tend to haphazardly paint their ranks with an incredibly broad brush as self-centered narcissists, lacking all manners in social skills as a result of growing up behind a computer screen.

Spend any considerable amount of time with these 20-somethings, however, and you quickly begin to realize how socially-aware, compassionate and relationship-oriented so many of them are. They simply have a different approach to communicating and engaging than previous generations.

But what if that millennial is your own kid, and possibly the future leader of your firm?

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

Topics: Business and Operations Management, Team Development, Succession Planning

The Clock is Ticking: Succession Planning for Advisors

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Feb 17, 2016 12:42:04 PM

Let’s start with a few irrefutable facts. Today, the average age of financial advisors in this country stands at 50.9 years old. According to Cerulli Associates, over the next ten years the transition of advisors into retirement will be unprecedented – involving 35% of wirehouse advisors, 25% of independent broker-dealer advisors and 30% of RIAs. A decade from now, more than one out of every four of you will have left the business.

The question is…what will happen to all those clients? Who will provide a continuity of care?

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

Topics: Team Development, Succession Planning

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.

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

Topics: Financial Planning, Succession Planning

Succeeding at Succession for Financial Advisors

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Nov 17, 2015 5:48:04 PM

As a conscientious advisor, you take your fiduciary duty to your clients quite seriously. Your entire raison d'être is to serve as their voice of fiscal reason, advising and planning to help ensure they’ll be financially well-protected. Yet when it comes to planning for your own legacy, most of you are woefully unprepared as regards to your single most valuable asset – your practice.

Far too many firm principals convince themselves that they have a succession plan in place, when in fact what they actually have is some vague idea of what they hope will happen. In my new book, You've Been Framed, I shine a light on the ultimate advisor hypocrisy I call the "The Big Fat Lie". You swear up and down to your clients that you’ll be there with them through every life transition…but truth be told, you really don’t have a plan to ensure delivering on that promise!

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

Topics: Leadership, Succession Planning

Financial Advisors: Questions to Enhance Your Succession Planning

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jun 24, 2015 2:55:00 PM

Screen_Shot_2015-06-24_at_2.50.51_PM-2It takes very disciplined thinking to fully consider your succession planning strategy. Often, succession planning is confused with continuity planning. While continuity planning is an important piece of the puzzle if you plan to transition the leadership of your business, it does not consider the future of your business with the same thoroughness as succession planning.
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Topics: Business and Operations Management, Succession Planning, Outcomes-Based Planning

Part I: Start Planning While You’re Still Growing

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Jun 11, 2015 12:23:42 PM

Succession planning is the buzzword of the year. People are discussing it in every office and reading about it in every publication, but so few of us are actually doing it. Statistics show that only one-third of financial advisors have even started thinking about succession planning for their businesses, while those who have are so close to retirement that their efforts might all be for naught.

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Topics: Client Acquisition, Client Engagement, Succession Planning, Business planning,

Part I: Business Plan Elements Every Financial Advisor Must Cover

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Apr 29, 2015 2:16:24 PM

Sometimes a task that feels like back-tracking can actually give you the momentum to move forward. Our discussions surrounding succession planning have led many of you to ask some significant questions regarding your business: How are you running it today? How would you want it to run in the future? How do you imagine it will continue to run in the event that someone else takes it over?

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Topics: Business Development, Succession Planning, Business planning,

6 Keys to Evaluating a Financial Advisory Business For Sale

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Apr 27, 2015 2:40:25 PM

 

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

Topics: Business Development, Succession Planning, enterprise value

Include Your Competitors in Your Professional Advocate & Succession Strategy

Posted by Ray Sclafani on Apr 14, 2015 4:25:22 PM

Did you ever consider that an untapped asset in your corner could be those people whom you view as your greatest competition? A mistake many advisors make when building out their center of influence and professional advocate networks, is that they fail to consider including the people who do the very same thing that they do within their network of resources.

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

Topics: Succession Planning, professional advocate, networking,, Center of Influence

5 Takeaways for Succession Planning from Built To Sell

Posted by Alix Purcell on Dec 12, 2014 10:49:00 AM


In his best-selling book, Built to Sell, John Warrillow writes what appears at first glance to be a guidebook for creating a solid sales platform. In actuality, the tips outlined help solve one of the biggest challenges of running a sustainable financial advisory business: The art of creating value in your business that is separate from you as the founder or owner. While geared to benefit any business, many of these tips can be applied directly to our industry to help advisors prepare for the eventual succession of their business.


According to Fidelity research, 75% of financial advisors have no succession plan for their businesses. Many advisors ignore the importance of succession planning because, at their most successful, they feel invincible. This is an understandable and powerful feeling that leads 43% of advisors to believe they’ll work "forever". They don't consider succession planning a “top of the list” necessity.

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

Topics: Selling, Succession Planning

10 Questions to Ask Before You Partner with Another Financial Advisor

Posted by Alix Purcell on Dec 8, 2014 12:24:00 PM


Teaming is becoming an increasingly popular way to provide improved wealth management services to increasingly sophisticated investors seeking more comprehensive and effective guidance with their financial planning and investments. In most cases, a partnership is as beneficial for the advisors who partner as it is for the investors who work with them. In fact, our ClientWise statistics indicate that practices with multiple partners generate on average 38% more revenue per team member and manage 97% more assets than their solopreneur peers.


And yet anyone in the industry will tell you that partnering isn’t a simple endeavor. More financial advisors choose to work alone rather than attempt to build a partnership or financial advisory team. Why? Because, like any relationship, problems arise when they haven’t fully explored how their current and future endeavors will align. Avoid this problem by asking yourselves the following questions before partnering with another financial advisor:

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

Topics: Team Development, Succession Planning

Gen X Listen Up! 6 Strategies to Team Successfully with Gen Y Financial Advisors

Posted by Alix Purcell on Oct 30, 2014 11:00:00 AM


The Million Dollar Question:
How do you get legacy wealth and business into the hands of younger financial advisors with ease? Of course, “with ease” is the key phrase here. While it seems like an obvious choice, the process of passing off business from an aging advisor planning to retire to a younger, less experienced advisor is never easy for either side. The path to partnership and team building between these two entities can be made smoother by careful attention to the following, but it needs to start well before succession begins and be present throughout the creation of the business:

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

Topics: Business and Operations Management, Team Development, Change, Succession Planning, Millennials

7 Key Issues for NextGen Financial Advisors

Posted by Alix Purcell on Oct 28, 2014 10:00:00 AM


It’s no secret that financial advisors under 30 bring a lot to the table when it comes to wealth management. Everything from their tech-savvy solutions, to their ability to connect on a very different level with younger investors make them valuable assets. But in what specific areas should they use these skills, and where should they focus their attention to speak to what the next generation of investors is looking for? We asked a panel of young, rising star advisors at a recent conference and here were their insights:

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

Topics: Business and Operations Management, Team Development, Succession Planning, Millennials