What retirement issue has hit you or your clients out of left field, and how did you resolve it?
Although it is a bit obvious, the issue that has hit us and our clients has been the speed and magnitude of the decline in account values since the downturn in the economy. Since then, we have focused on making sure that our clients are appropriately diversified and poised to take advantage of the recovery. Another issue for some has been maintaining needed cash flow. For those clients, we raised the amount of cash needed to hold in the account to ensure needed income would be available.
What prospecting methods have been most successful for you in attracting retirement-planning clients?
The prospecting method that has been most successful for us has been providing “optimal” service and advice to current clients. By doing so, we receive a number of referrals through clients who appreciate our honesty, advice and experience.
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Do you face any frequently occurring retirement-planning mistakes with prospects?
Retirement-planning mistakes that we frequently see include clients holding onto concentrated positions. For a variety of reasons, clients (and prospects) seem to be committed to maintaining positions that we believe should be more diversified in this volatile market. Another mistake we see has been “miscalculation” of risk tolerance. Prospects who thought they were long-term growth investors have learned over this past year how volatile that strategy can be. With the market the way it has been, we have found, diversification among asset classes may be the best strategy to cushion one’s portfolio.