(CHICAGO) AIG Advisor Group President and CEO Larry Roth gave the opening address at the firm’s “Why Women Are Winning” event. He later shared some of his views on the organization, which includes AIG Financial Advisors of Phoenix, FSC Securities Corporation of Atlanta and Royal Alliance of New York.
How did the women’s conference get off the ground? This is the second women’s conference. FSC in Atlanta held one with some of their top female advisors, about 18 months ago in 2006, with the idea of exchanging ideas, brainstorming and sharing best practices. It was a really big hit. A year later, other AIG advisor groups, discussed having another event open to top female advisors across the organization.
Now it is an annual event. And our intention is to really build something broader around it. We don’t want it to be just a one-time [once-a-year] opportunity, but we want it to have a web strategy and be part of break-out sessions at other meetings.
We have a very significant meeting, training and education budget. We would like to have a hybrid approach with both broker-dealer specific meetings and overall advisor-group meetings with women’s programs. We feel so fortunate to have so many smart people spread throughout our firms, and we don’t want access to these people to be limited.
Of our 7,500 advisors, slightly more than 25 percent are female. Many top practices are women-owned or have women in them.
Why do women FAs thrive in the independent model? If you look at certain law firms and big CPA firms that specialize in adapting the workplace to women who might have children and/or have left the workforce but then come back to it, the environment is so flexible.
Within our environment, you can design any type of practice that allows you to mix your personality and skills with any type of client, and that model is perfectly suited to those who need any type of flexibility in their schedule. And it is a low-cost-of-entry model.
You can always hire people to help you with those sides of the business that aren’t your cup of tea. You have a lot more longevity with your clients, too, because you can continue to do this into your 70s and 80s.