From the May 2009 issue of Investment Advisor • Subscribe!

Let the Sun Shine In

Sidebar to the Angie Herber's column "Coming of Age"

In difficult times like the current environment, it's important to divulge as much about your firm's finances as you feel comfortable for two reasons.

First, making all your staff aware of the current economic situation and its impact will make them better, more understanding employees.

You'd be surprised to find how many otherwise bright younger folks just don't connect the dots between what's happening out in the "world" and what's going on with their employer. They may understand how the markets affect your clients, but not realize the impact on the firm. Opening up your finances not only makes them feel they are part of your team and your family, it can also enlist their help and support in ways that might not have occurred to you.

Second, opening up to your younger advisors more fully prepares them for partnership and firm ownership. It might be hard to remember when you were that young, but believe me, they have lots of misconceptions about what it means to be the owner of an advisory practice. The more you can let them see what the reality is, the more helpful employees they'll be, and the better partners they'll make in the future.

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