Last week was very busy. I presented a financial plan to one client, began to prepare a more complex plan for another, delivered a life insurance policy to yet another client, and had a second meeting with a prospective client. All in all it was a pretty good week.
I recently took a step back and evaluated my planning value. I’ve determined that there are over 111 metrics I evaluate. Included in this number are various probabilities, debt ratios, a 72 point will inspection, etc. All together there are over 111 different points of inspection in the plan. The recommendations which stem from this are contained in an executive summary format so the client can easily read them at a later date. The point is this: It is very thorough and clients value it.
I’m also in the process of developing a Web site for my business. It’s about time I join the e-train. My intention is to have a site which includes a secure area so clients can log in with a password and view their personal information. Let’s say we’ve completed a financial plan and I have prepared an implementation schedule for them. I can post it to their secure area and if they complete something they were responsible for, they can check it off. Then an e-mail will be automatically generated and sent to me to confirm this activity. This addition will make it much easier to manage the planning process.
I’m finding what most clients want is an advisor who will be proactive in contacting them. If the client is consistently the one who is initiating the contact, they may come to believe that the advisor is not really interested in their situation. The advantage we as independents have over advisors in large firms is that they often have more clients than they can properly manage. As an independent, since our payout is higher, we don’t need as many clients to receive the same income as our wirehouse brethren. I’ll illustrate this with a story.
There was a man who was traveling so much he rarely got to see his family and when he did, he was exhausted from all the traveling. He spoke with a business consultant about it who suggested that he double his price. The man was startled and said, “If I do that, I’ll lose half my business.” The consultant fittingly replied, “Precisely!” You see, we don’t need to double our price because our payout serves the same function.
Have a great week!