Selecting the right advisor can be a daunting task for investors. The wrong choice could mean the difference between goal achievement and failure. Though all of us differ as to personality, the common ingredient of emotion is the culprit we must keep in check if we’re to succeed. Sure, some personalities are more logical and some more emotional, but no matter how logical an individual is, it’s still the emotions which rule the decision-making process. Therefore, the task of proper advisor selection is critical and should not be undertaken without a well-defined plan. How should the investor approach this task? I suggest breaking the process down into a few simple steps. In this post, I’ll discuss three such areas to explore.
Step No. 1: Get a Referral, but Then Ask Why
Clearly, a referral from a close and trusted friend is best, but even then, it is not a guarantee against failure. A satisfied client may make the referral, but what if the client’s satisfaction had little to do with the advisor’s prowess. In other words, if the client is happy with their advisor, what factors have created this belief? Is it the advisor’s personality? Is it tied to investment performance? Is it the way the advisor carries out his or her duties? In short, when an investor receives a referral, they should always ask what it is about the advisor that has caused the referring party to make the recommendation.
Step No. 2: Ask for Qualifications, but Don’t Get Dazzled by Designations