An essential guide to tools and techniques for achieving efficiency, productivity, and profitability in financial advisory firms As a profession, financial advisors have been very well educated on how to be a financial advisor, but the industry does a poor job of preparing financial advisors to be great business owners. This book presents the Profit-Driven Architecture, a visual way of viewing the operational structure of a financial practice. * Provides a concrete way of understanding and improving the interrelationship of different parts of the operations of a financial practice firm * Explains how to increase the efficiency, productivity, and profitability of the firm, recognizing the interrelationships with one another * Reveals how to increase the capacity and value of the practice Given an aging population of financial advisors and increased focus on succession planning, increasing the value of a financial practice is a key deliverable of efficiency and this book showcases the best ways to do so.
David L. Lawrence, AIF(R), has over thirty-six years of experience in leadership and management. He is a veteran of the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War, having spent over 4 years on active duty as a non-commissioned officer, and later as a commissioned officer in the Naval Reserves. His service in two war zones, first in South Vietnam near the end of the Vietnam War, and later in the Middle East, provide a courageous backdrop to his leadership experiences. His compelling story of military leadership during a time of domestic political unrest is truly inspirational. Following his military career, David used the GI Bill to send himself through 7 years of college. David then spent 18 years with a major financial planning firm as a Senior Financial Advisor, Training Manager and District Manager. He has also worked for two large independent financial planning and asset management companies in senior management positions. His responsibilities have included managing large numbers of employees as well as setting up employee hiring, training, evaluation and compensation systems. His background and experience in integrating technological systems with management needs has given him a unique perspective on the use of technology as a leadership tool. David has spent the past several years writing and speaking. He founded EfficientPractice.com, a consulting company devoted to growth efficiency -solutions for professional businesses and in the -financial services industry. His speaking engagements have taken him all across the United States, Canada and the Far East.
Introduction xi Part One Management Efficiency Chapter 1 The Efficient Management Philosophy 3 Communication Is Key 4 The Irony of Micromanaging 7 Delegate, Don t Dominate 10 Summary 18 Chapter 2 Managing Resources 21 Efficiency versus Efficacy 21 Outsourcing 26 Downsizing 29 Managing Change: A Process of Inclusion 31 Summary 34 Chapter 3 Managing People and Communications 37 Step One: Pre-hire Preparation 37 Step Two: Background Information 38 Step Three: The Interview 39 Developing a Compensation Plan 40 Handling Confidential Information 45 Two Examples 46 The Holistic Approach 47 The Right Job Done by the Right People 53 Summary 56 Part Two Technology Efficiency Chapter 4 Client Relationship Management 61 Leveraging Technology 61 Summary 71 Chapter 5 Other Software Issues 73 Evernote 73 Digital Note-Taking Tools 74 Tablets and Storage Solutions 75 Rebalancing Software 79 Summary 82 Chapter 6 Systems Integration 85 Software Integration and Communication 85 Protecting Client Data 88 Summary 91 Part Three Process Efficiency Chapter 7 Building Procedures 95 Financial Plan Production Procedure 97 Flowcharts 100 Business Continuity Plans 102 Social Media Policies 105 Using Technology to Standardize Client Service Procedures 108 Summary 112 Chapter 8 Workflow Management Systems 115 Project Management Workflows 122 Workflow Systems: Efficient Methods for Tracking Tasks in the Office 125 Summary 127 Part Four Design Efficiency Chapter 9 Office Space Utilization 131 Creating a Paperless Office 132 Communications in the Office 135 Auditory and Visual Distractions 135 Outsourcing 138 Improving First Impressions 138 Feng Shui Tips for Your Business and Office 140 Summary 142 Chapter 10 Efficient Branding 145 Blue Ocean Strategy 145 Marketing Services 152 Efficient Websites 152 Summary 156 Afterword 159 Impact on Productivity, Profitability, Time Management, and Firm Capacity 161 Impact on Business Valuation 161 First Case Study 162 Second Case Study 165 About the Companion Website 171 About the Author 173 Index 175