Three reasons you're lucky to be in the financial services business
By Bill Bachrach
Bachrach & Associates
My wife, Anne, recently returned home from a vacation in Morocco with her mom. Several times during her trip, local merchants commented on how lucky she was to have been born in America, to which, of course, she agreed.
Have you ever noticed how easy it can be to take for granted some of the better things in our lives?
This is a perfect time to reflect on how great the financial services business is, to think about how lucky you are to be in this business, and consider how to maximize the intrinsic value that exists in your own business and life.
This is a great business and it is a great time to be a financial adviser.
The reason I was attracted to this business when I was a young man beginning my career is because it meets what I call the “Big Three” criteria:
Money — Within a few years, you can organize your business to have the right number of clients who pay you the right amount of money so your business generates all the money necessary to cover your business expenses, pays for your present personal lifestyle, helps get your own financial house in order, and provides enough money to save and invest to fund your future goals and personal lifestyle. Not all businesses or careers give you this degree of financial opportunity.
Time freedom — Within a few years of becoming a financial adviser, you can have the right number of clients, the right kind of clients and the support team that allows you to deliver a very high-quality experience for your clients. You should be able to accomplish these things working 30 hours per week or less, while taking eight to 10 weeks of real vacation per year. Not all businesses or careers afford this level of time freedom.
Help people — Even at the most elemental level, financial advisers help people with basic financial planning, goal setting, investment management and insurance. At a higher level, a financial adviser can choose to do more comprehensive planning, assist with tax planning, estate planning and comprehensive insurance planning.
At an even deeper level, a financial adviser can choose to help people consolidate all of their financial affairs. These clients delegate this oversight to their financial adviser, who coordinates and simplifies everything so they are free from having to think about their money. At every level, financial advisers help people make better choices so they have a higher probability of achieving their goals and fulfilling their values, thus making their lives better, especially during times like the past couple of years. How many businesses or careers provide all the money you need and want, plus time freedom, and the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others?
The benefits described here are the intrinsic rewards this business offers. Unfortunately, many of our financial adviser brothers and sisters are not enjoying all of these rewards. They work too many hours, trying to serve too many of the wrong clients, for too little money, and don’t make a significant impact. This has become so prevalent that many advisers are surprised when they hear from an adviser who is capitalizing on his value and reaping the intrinsic rewards available to all advisers.
One adviser we work with, Peter Oldziey, describes how incredulous advisers are when he shares his experience about his business. To paraphrase Peter, “All of my clients are ideal clients who pay us exactly what I ask, follow my advice 100 percent of the time and adore us. When I tell other advisers this who don’t know how much money I make and how much time off I take, it almost seems like they either don’t believe me or assume I must have some unique powers not available to everyone in this business.” Peter is a great guy and a great financial adviser, but he does not possess super powers.
This level of success will not happen by accident, but it does happen for many, many financial advisers. And you can make it happen for yourself.
To turn this article into action that will make a difference, consider the question: “What has to happen for me to actualize the intrinsic value this business has to offer in my professional and personal life?” Or put another way, “What could I be doing that I am not doing now to help me capitalize on all the benefits available to me in this business?”
Break this down further into a few sub-questions:
- “What changes or refinements do I need to make in order for my business to have the right number of clients who pay the right amount of money so my business generates all the money I need to cover my business expenses, pay for my present personal lifestyle, get my entire financial house in order, and provide enough money to fund my future personal lifestyle?”
- “What changes or refinements do I need so my clients get the stellar service they deserve with my personal time involvement being 30 hours per week or less?”
- “How can I improve my client value delivery so I make the largest difference possible in my clients’ lives?”