From time to time, we'll ask an advisor a list of questions that we feel can benefit others in the industry. Their responses may edited for length and clarity.
The Woodlands, Texas
What’s your best piece of advice for rookie advisors?
Find a mentor. I had several when I first got into the business and I still have a few now. I realized very early that if I could leverage someone else’s experience and knowledge, I would become a better advisor. I try to mentor younger advisors now to return the favor and to help me remember the keys to success that were shared with me over the years.
What's your biggest challenge now?
My biggest challenge is focused around practice management. I have grown my practice significantly over the last few years and now need to maintain the high level of service we committed to with our clients. It requires planning for us to help clients fulfill their dreams, and communicating this with them in turbulent markets can become difficult if practice management isn’t being taken care of.
How are you facing that challenge?
I have hired additional support staff and a junior partner to help segment my book, organize my time and help operationally with planning, implementation and allocations. I'm looking to add more talent to my team and we are constantly trying to find ways to leverage our time and efforts to provide a Ritz Carlton level of service to our clients.
What's your best prospecting technique?
Service is the best prospecting technique. By handling our clients investment, banking, trust and risk management needs, we provide a high level of touch and understanding. Going above and beyond from a service standpoint is the difference in our practice. While we're always trying to improve the process, the better our service to clients, the better our ability to be referred.
How long have you been in the industry and what's the biggest professional change you've seen in that time?
The biggest change I've seen over the last 12 years in the industry is the shift from transactional to consultative. When I first started, we were looking for the next deal as soon as we walked out of the appointment. Starting at zero was very difficult to see every month and it took one of my mentors to teach me the difference. Since we made the change in 2010, our practice has grown a multiple of three, and now I couldn’t imagine doing business any other way.