Forget assets under management — a better measurement of success for advisors is clients’ financial confidence, according to Evamarie Schoenborn, vice president of investment products and services at Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co.
“Oftentimes we talk about AUM and that’s a measurement of success in the firm, but actually it’s financial confidence of our clients that is a better measure of the success because that’s what we are helping our clients achieve,” Schoenborn told ThinkAdvisor.
Schoenborn joined Northwestern Mutual a year ago. Previously, she worked at the broker-dealer Ameriprise Financial in Minneapolis for more than 21 years.
In her current role, she’s responsible for the product lines that Northwestern Mutual advisors offer to their clients, specifically in the investment management space.
During a visit to ThinkAdvisor’s New York office, Schoenborn explained why she thinks there’s a lot of value in financial advice beyond the dollars.
“I think so often as an industry we point at AUM and oftentimes don’t talk about that impact we have on clients’ lives,” she explained. “If you have conversations with clients on what does their financial advisor mean to them, it’s not often talked about ‘he manages my money’ or ‘she manages my money.’ It’s more about the relationship they have and how that advisor makes them feel more confident about reaching their goals.”
The study — which annually looks at Americans’ attitudes and behaviors toward money, financial decision-making, and the broader issues affecting long-term financial security — showed that Americans that work with an advisor feel more confident than those that do not. According to the study, 54% of those that work with an advisor feel “very financially secure” compared with 21% without an advisor.