3 Tips for Rookie Advisors From a Seasoned Wealth Manager

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I’m a knowledge seeker and sharer at heart. I find joy in educating people and sharing the nuggets of knowledge I’ve acquired through my experience as a wealth manager. Mentoring young advisors and helping them scale their businesses has become a passion of mine. With 14 years of experience under my belt, here's three tips for young advisors just starting their careers.

Live by the Client

I believe this rule is the most important: always live by the client. When you put your client first, you’re continuously providing value, especially when you’re also providing education to them. It’s my goal to positively impact my clients’ lives everyday. Passing along how I operate and interact with my clients is something I find great joy in. As I watch advisors make this transition, I realize that they too feel wholesome and take great pride in serving their clients.

Step away from the financial industry norm

Putting your clients first isn’t exactly the financial industry’s normal practices. Many people are shocked to learn the majority of the financial industry has not positioned themselves to act in the best interest of their clients. It’s interesting to me that people continue to work with financial advisors (brokers) that are not willing to be transparent and lay it all on the line with their clients. Pledging to be a fiduciary and promising to put your clients needs before your own, just makes sense to me. Doing this would mean you would have to give up your security licenses that you worked so hard for (no more commissions.) And I understand why the industry is having a hard time doing this. Frankly, they don’t know how to operate without receiving commissions because brokers are used to being managed. However, when brokers and financial advisors shift their mindset and learn to serve people first, their value skyrockets and their business scales. In essence this mind shift is entrepreneurial. You’re stepping away from the sale of third party transactions and running your own business with less demands, rules, and restrictions. As a young advisor, it sounds scary to go off on your own. But their are easy ways to transition. For example going fee-based to fee-only over time. By starting to charge fees as well as commissions you can slowly give up your licenses while building your business. 

Pledge to be a Fiduciary

The industry has some-what inquired a bad name for itself. Commissions has cost the American people a significant amount of money, $17 billion according to the Department of Labor. Fiduciary to me is a state of mind; a moral expectation to serve my clients first and foremost. To uphold my fiduciary duty is also a state of heart in my eyes. I believe that the majority of us are in this profession because we have servant hearts. We love helping people. Upholding my fiduciary responsibility is who I am and it’s honestly the only way I know how to do things. By choosing the fiduciary path I commit to the legal standard to act in the best interest of my clients. When you think about it, your clients are making major life choices based on the advice you’re giving. This responsibility is significant to me. Watching people achieve their goals over a period of time based on the recommendations I’m providing them is the result of how I choose to reflect my fiduciary responsibility and it’s unbelievably fulfilling.

Make the transition

I’m sure many of you are tired of hearing about the fiduciary rule or maybe the word has begun to even stress you out a bit. If you’ve been keeping up with the rulings, then you probably already know that the new fiduciary law still allows for commissions under the Best Interest Contract Exemption, or BICE. And maybe that’s a relief to some of you. But, I believe that this first ruling is just the first of many regulations we will see. To me it’s simple, pledge to be a fiduciary and you won’t go extinct or stay stationary and sooner or later cease to exist.

If you found this information helpful be sure to check out our post “Fiduciary Rule: 5 things for Brokers to Consider.”

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Lastly, what are your biggest concerns surrounding the new rule?