Through the years, I have done a less than adequate job of telling prospective clients how we can help them.
Just recently, a prospective client suggested we get together for lunch to once again attempt to answer the age old question of "how can we work together and what can you do for me?"
Quite honestly that is like asking a doctor to prescribe a new drug without the allowing him or her to do a full medical history and examination!
How should I have answered this prospective client? I should have told them "It all Starts with a Plan."
The plan is where we get the chance to do a full financial history and examination. It is where we help the client get organized, provide them with a personalized client website where they can track their financial lives and we can interact with them in the financial industry's form of an examination.
We use some pretty slick technology to do that interactive plan. This video does a much better job than I have been doing of explaining that process.
It is only after this process that we can provide specifics recommendations on how we can help the client achieve their specific goals and objectives.
They can then make the decision if they agree with the specific recommendations, ask for clarification, or collectively we can explore other options. Depending on the complexity of the client's estate, we may include their trusted CPA, attorney or insurance agent as part of the process.
Once we are in agreement on the course the client should take, we can then decide who is best suited to implement that client's recommendations.
For clients with substantial and complex financial lives, this may include additional services beyond planning and investment help such as our family office suite of services whereby we design a customized group of services for them to free them from the complexity of managing large wealth. Please note that we don't necessarily have to manage investment assets to provide these services.
For the business owner, it may be a differing set of services designed to help them prepare for the eventual transition of their business to future generations, a core management group or an outside buyer.
In the case of both the complex client and business owner, we work with their existing trusted advisers and other specialists to facilitate the desired outcome.
If you are looking for help with your planning, let me tell you where it starts. It All Starts With a Plan! Find out more here.