We’re halfway through the first month of 2019, which means that most of us have already given up on the New Year’s resolutions we made so optimistically on January 1st. Even though you may have abandoned your resolve to drink less coffee this year, we invite you to consider three NEW New Year’s resolutions and set yourself up to be an even better financial advisor in 2019. These goals will help you meet and manage client expectations throughout the year, and don’t worry—we’ve provided our own advice on how to achieve each one. No quitters here, folks.

Financial Advisors in 2019: What to Focus On

  1. Communicate more (and better)

A 2018 article titled “Why Clients Fire Financial Advisors” begins with three words: failure to communicate. Though your clients may have different needs depending on age, account size, or risk tolerance, the general consensus is that checking in (especially during turbulent market periods) can help manage anxiety and expectations. This year, resolve to be more proactive about client communication.

Our tip: Start small by simply adding one more client touch point to your repertoire. If most of your clients only meet with you annually, try adding a quarterly newsletter with market commentary or firm updates. If your clients tend to check in with concerns more frequently, consider a bi-weekly roundup of these topics and share your responses across your platform. Worried about oversharing, or sending too many updates? Add an unsubscribe button.

  1. Share the wealth (of knowledge)

Investors are more educated than ever, but that doesn’t mean they don’t get nervous. The volatility can be especially stressful for younger clients who haven’t experienced market turbulence before.  Though it may seem tiresome to quell these concerns (or talk them out of wanting to change up their strategy) it is important to acknowledge that those concerns are coming from a fear of the unknown.  You may feel like you’re repeating yourself, but that client might be learning something for the first time. By sharing your knowledge and experience, you will not only help your clients make the right decision, but perhaps keep them from jumping on the phone so quickly in the future.

Our tip: Try meeting your clients halfway by providing resources that they can reference in the future. Whether it be an article or whitepaper on market turbulence, or hosting a quarterly webinar where you can provide commentary directly (and make that recording available in the future), sharing information is key to educating your clients and being an even better financial advisor in 2019.

Bonus read: 10 Unexpected Reasons Volatility Drives Clients Nuts

  1. Do less (so that you can do more)

We challenge you to automate one aspect of your practice. There is no glory in doing things the old fashioned way in 2019. This resolution could be as simple as adding a project management tool for your internal team, or as complicated as implementing a new CRM. There are endless options that can help you manage your practice, your clients, or your clients’ portfolios with more efficiency and confidence.

Our tip: Start by thinking about what makes you nervous for this year. Do you need to grow your business? Try automating outreach through social media and email marketing. Are you losing sleep over how long it’s going to take to rebalance your portfolios? Bring in a portfolio rebalancing tool to save you time and energy. If you’re worried about protecting your clients’ portfolios during volatility, try implementing a risk management tool that can help you better manage the true sources of portfolio risk.

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