Reflecting on the Biggest Value an Advisor Can Provide

In this video, the financial advisors discuss the significant value they provide to their clients. They emphasize several key aspects that set them apart:

  1. Extreme Ownership and Coordination: The advisors take extreme ownership of action items, ensuring that all aspects of a client’s financial plan, tax plan, estate plan, and more are coordinated effectively. They act as quarterbacks, ensuring everything aligns seamlessly.
  2. Implementation and Follow-Through: Beyond creating a plan, the advisors focus on the implementation and multiple steps of follow-through. They highlight the importance of ensuring that all necessary steps are taken to execute the plan correctly.
  3. Time Savings: They stress that the primary goal is to save clients’ time, not waste it. They aim to function like a CFO reporting to the CEO (the client) and handle the day-to-day financial tasks, allowing clients to focus on their high-level life goals.
  4. Reverse Engineering Meetings: Rather than meeting for the sake of meeting, the advisors aim to ensure that meetings are meaningful and efficient, focusing on high-level reporting and calibration of the client’s plan.
  5. Being There When It Matters Most: The advisors recognize that accessibility and availability during significant life events or decisions, such as job changes, marriage, divorce, or major financial choices, are crucial. They aim to provide extra attention during these critical moments.

Overall, the advisors’ value proposition centers around holistic financial planning, coordination, time-saving, meaningful meetings, and unwavering support during important life events, all aimed at helping clients achieve their financial and life goals

Video Transcript

In this video we’re going to talk about some of the biggest value adds that we provide as financial advisors. And Matt, you have 14 years of experience in this industry. What are the actual biggest value adds that an advisor can provide?

Ben, that’s a great question. We often get asked, you know, from prospective clients that have done it themselves their whole life, you know, why is the fee worth it? Or you know, what’s the value proposition here?

So I just wanted to think it’ll be helpful to really break that down. There are table stakes such as managing the wealth, rebalancing tax loss harvesting, selecting securities, implementing the plan.

I believe every firm should have those down path. Those should just be general expectations which of course save a client’s time. I think the big differentiators for the best advisors are the intangibles.

And the intangibles are really it comes down to who’s taking extreme ownership of action items actually getting done. So who’s quarterbacking not only the financial plan but also making sure the financial plan talks to the tax plan, the financial plan talks to the estate plan.

So some of the biggest things we’ve seen almost half the time is that on tax forms if backdoor Roths get done, are those reported correctly on the tax return? Well, I think it really falls on the advisor to directly communicate that to the client and to the CPA so that everyone’s on the same team.

So when a client has these different relationships, a client’s going to be too busy to remember everything that was said or done or implemented. So it really should fall on someone to quarterback the whole process.

That’s where I believe the financial advisor usually has the biggest high level picture of the client situation. So it should be their responsibility to make sure the estate planning is talking to the financial plan, the financial plan is talking to the tax plan, the risk management plan is in place.

So one common mistake we see not only from a tax perspective, from an estate planning perspective, is that maybe a will or trust gets set up. And the client thinks it’s done, and the attorney just says, great, the documents are done.

Well, those documents are great. But if you have accounts that state a specific person and not a trust as a beneficiary upon passing, the direct beneficiary always wins, right? So the trust that was created meant nothing if it was actually updated as a beneficiary on different count.

So the biggest value, in our opinion, is the quarterbacking, which then leads to the implementation and the multiple steps of follow through. So we see a lot of professionals stop at one or two steps, and if something takes five plus steps, usually something’s lost in translations.

It’s kind of like a game of telephone where by the end of the circle, the original message was definitely lost. If you have one person making sure that that message stays the same and actually gets followed through on the value an advisor can provide is just astronomical compared to the fee that they charge.

So this is the biggest value that we believe an advisor, and specifically something that we strive for at Awa to provide to all of our clients. The second aspect of value proposition, I believe, is reverse engineering the concept of I want to meet every three months, or meet every talk every month, or every six months.

An advisor should really be focused on saving a client’s time, not wasting a client’s time. So we never want to meet. To meet, view a good advisor like a CFO, you’re the CEO. As a CEO, you need to be focused on the high level aspects of your family, of your life, and your goals and objectives.

That means everything that you can should be outsourced to the CFO, and the CFO should report to you. But the CFO shouldn’t be involving you with implementation. The mundane day to day, they should be reporting to you and helping you decide on how to calibrate your plan moving forward.

So it’s the reverse engineering, the reversing that concept of let’s meet to meet and just talk about stuff. Let’s make sure that when we meet, it’s to save your time, not waste your time. And it’s a high level reporting that’s directly allowing your life goals and vision to take place.

The third aspect of a value proposition we found from direct client feedback is be there when it matters most. So when we, as an advisor, think it’s important for a client, we meet, let’s say twice a year, and we’re communicating all the time behind the scenes.

It’s great, everything’s good. From a client perspective, what we’ve heard is, that’s great, that’s expected. But the most important thing is that when something happens in life, maybe to a big decision for a child, or a big decision on a vacation house, or a job change, or a geographic change, maybe an event like a divorce or someone getting married, are you accessible?

Are you available during these big events? And these from a lot of clients feedback to us are ten times more important than just a regular review meeting. Are you there when the client needs you most?

How accessible are you? Can you get back to your clients within a 24 to 48 hours turnaround and make sure that there’s that extra attention to detail during those big life events? Most clients will have two to three things throughout a year that are absolutely crucial, that an advisor is involved with, and that advisor can help eliminate decision fatigue.

So be there during those critical moments and I believe the value will never be questioned. We welcome any questions you have and look forward to catching you in the next video.

Show Full Transcript

Recommended Videos

Lifetime Gifting
US vs International Stocks
10 Mistakes That Retirees Make and How to Avoid Them: Tip 6- Mismanaging Withdrawals
Tips for Raising Financially Responsible Kids
Our One-Roof Philosphy
Updates to AHN Mega Backdoor Roth 401k