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Financial Planning > Behavioral Finance

6 Smart Tips for Working With Millennial Financial Advisors

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As the leader of a successful financial advisory team your greatest asset is your human capital. And if you’re looking to increase the sustainability of your business it might be wise to look into hiring a younger generation of advisors to help grow and prepare your team for the future. Millennial financial advisors hold incredible knowledge and first-hand experience regarding the new generation of investors and approaches to their financial planning. Their relationship management skills are beneficial in connecting with the heirs of your clients’ wealth. 

Millennials are also an asset because they bring a very different kind of thinking to the table; born from involved parents, incredible access to information and the perspective that anything’s possible. While a more seasoned advisor may find it difficult to bridge the gap between his or her mindset and that of the younger generation, it’s worth it to invest in their growth to ultimately help the sustainability and succession planning of your practice.

The six tips below will guide your thinking as you begin to grow your financial advisory team and welcome these next-gen financial advisors.

Tip 1: Embrace Their Ability and Willingness to Work as a Team
Millennials may be independent in many respects, but they are also used to working in teams and thrive off collaborating with their peers. Use this as a catalyst to break out of your habit of working alone, and begin using co-creation as a tool in your weekly meetings.

Allowing them to be part of the creation process with you and your other team members will increase their buy-in and solidify their investment in both the process and the outcome.

Tip 2: Give Them Structure With Agency
Encourage the enthusiasm that millennials have about getting the job done, and provide structure (not instruction) in helping them achieve their goals. Processes are crucial to helping a financial advisory team run smoothly, but let the younger advisors who are running those processes play a part in creating them. 

Tip 3: Don’t Say One Thing and Do Another
Millennial advisors are incredibly perceptive. They’ve grown up in a generation in which they’re constantly pitched information, and they’ve learned how to filter it. They can smell dishonesty from a mile away. You’re better off being straightforward, even if the message is negative, than saying one thing and doing another. They will respond well to your openness, see it as a sign of respect and provide you with the same in return. 

Tip 4: Refrain from Micromanagement
While they love encouragement and recognition, Millennials do not respond well to being micromanaged. They were raised to believe that they can accomplish anything, so give them the opportunity to prove it.

You’ll kill two birds with one stone if you motivate instead of micromanage, because not only will your team members be more invested and committed to their goals, you’ll also see that they’re better prepared to step into a role with greater responsibility when the time comes.  

Tip 5: Let Them Make a Difference
Next-generation advisors care deeply about making an impact. In many cases they are more likely to take on a task as an opportunity to incentivize change rather than generate money, so you can bet that they are incredibly committed to impacting the mission of the company. Make sure they are clear on what your vision for the future is and feel their contribution is directly impacting the outcome.

Further, make them an integral part in creating that vision and you’ll have an incredibly committed group of young team members.

Tip 6: Call Them ‘Team Members’ Recognize the talent you see in your employees and give them the credit they deserve by referring to them as your “team members” rather than your “staff.” At ClientWise we even encourage clients to refrain from using the term “junior advisor” because it is demotivates employees and creates confusion for the clients who work with them. When you bring someone on to your team, hire them with their ideal role in mind and treat them as such from the beginning as much as possible. 

Millennial advisors can be an incredibly important asset to your team—both in working with the clients you have now and those you will take on in the future. It’s crucial that you clearly articulate their roles, give them a say in creating these roles, and allow them to feel as though they are making an impact.