To help manage, maintain and grow their wealth, huge numbers of Americans solicit the professional guidance of CPAs, financial consultants, attorneys and other experts. These advisors typically work independently, focusing exclusively on their area of expertise, and with only a limited sense of each client’s complete financial picture.
For clients with complex financial planning needs, however, this narrow approach is detrimental to their best interests. It also hinders the advisor’s ability to be most effective.
In today’s highly competitive marketplace, establishing and maintaining a successful long-term client relationship requires you, the advisor, to anticipate and serve the broadest spectrum of your clients’ needs. The solution is strategic business alliances.
Strength in Numbers
The idea of collaboration may not agree immediately with your business instincts. But the most successful, comprehensive, long-term plans for a client’s financial growth and security are founded on an understanding of his/her complete financial profile.
To be successful in this regard, you need to consider strategic alliances: a formal network of top-quality advisors who coordinate their efforts on behalf of shared clients through a continuously updated exchange of information.
As an insurance professional, you can create a cumulative “think tank” by working with the clients’ other financial advisors. The team members pool knowledge and synchronize efforts to your clients’ advantage.
Partnering allows you to determine what strategies best balance asset growth, management and protection for each client. When, for example, might an investment opportunity outweigh a potential tax advantage? When might the opposite be the case?
Smoothly functioning strategic business alliances keep all parties in a real-time and integrated communications loop. This collaborative effort will generate more accurate data and a more comprehensive understanding of your client’s profile. That, in turn, allows you to offer each client better and more informed guidance.
You thereby gain increased client satisfaction and retention, referrals, and a collegial network of professionals to consult when questions arise in your work that might benefit from their expertise.
Building a Network
If a client has other advisors deployed on his/her behalf, consider engaging them. If not, you’ll need to forge relationships on your own. Understand, however, that an alliance is only as strong as its members.
So, do your homework. Invest the time to research potential partners. And form alliances only with those advisors who demonstrate a skilled professional attitude and who, like you, are dedicated to taking the best care of clients.
Look for partners among those whom the advisors themselves consult for advice. Ask yourself if you would be willing to refer your most valued client to this advisor.