Welcome to part three of the three part series on identifying opportunities for innovation in your financial advice or financial planning business.
So far, we've looked at what takes the most time, yesterday we looked at what has the most cost, and today we're going to look at what can you leave behind.
Now, looking back on those lists that you made, you're probably going to identify a few things that you can leave behind, and this is absolutely going to be different for everyone. There are a ton of factors that go into this. So here are just some examples.
One of the big ones, and we talked about this yesterday, is clients that are a wrong fit or that are unprofitable. There's no reason you need to keep clients that are unprofitable. There are a lot of new business models coming out, people that work with clients where that same client could be profitable to them.
So if you haven't gone through a client segmentation exercise in a while, and you don't know pretty easily which clients are profitable and which clients aren't, that's a good thing to do. And then honestly, don't feel bad if those are clients that you leave behind, if they're just not the right fit.
Outdated tech is a big one, and this can be challenging because it can be tech that you've had for a while. But so often in order to find the next thing we actually need to get rid of the outdated thing, and technology is one of those big areas.
Quarterly and annual reports, if you're sending those. One of the things that I love doing is somewhere in the report, sort of two thirds in, somewhere in the back, putting in a little note that says, if you're reading this, please let us know. And we'd love to send you a $10 Amazon gift card or something.
That's a really great way of finding out, and a fun way of finding out, if clients are actually reading those reports. If not, guess what, you can leave them behind. You don't have to spend all of that time and energy.
Long meetings. Again, this is going to vary person to person. But if that's something that does feel a bit exhausting. So often we do feel like we have to fill this time. If you schedule an hour long meeting, you can kind of just talk and fill the time. A lot of people have a lot of other things to do, yourself and your clients included. It can be really, really efficient to just have a 15 or 20 minute meeting, cover one topic and do that a couple times throughout the year. And that actually helps build a much deeper rapport than talking to someone only once or twice a year. So leave behind a lot of those long meetings.
Manual scheduling. I really do know that can be a total pain, like I said for everyone, but this list can be a whole lot longer. There can be a lot more things on it. So it's going to be dependent on you.
And in all honesty, this exercise might seem a bit simple. We've looked at what takes the most time, what has the most cost and what can we leave behind. And in all honesty, this is exactly what I did time and again in my first seven years in the profession. I ended up working my way up to be an owner in the company. I was sort of the chief operating officer and I joke that I streamlined myself out of a job because I was constantly going back and saying, okay, I improved it this much. How can I improve it a little bit more? And I had so much fun doing that, that I left and I started a completely virtual [financial planning] business, hyper efficient leveraging the heck out of all kinds of technology, which I just love doing. And I realized I love helping other people do that.
So oftentimes it's those simple exercises that can actually have the most impact and it's most impactful if we actually do them over and over again, like physical exercise, longterm benefits there.
So now that you've gone through this, hopefully taking notes, maybe created a worksheet, it's something you can revisit on a quarterly basis.
How can you continue your innovation journey?
If you haven't yet listened to The Innovating Advice Show it's available on all major platforms. Every Tuesday, I am interviewing amazing financial advisors and planners all over the world on how they are continually innovating their business so that I can pass that information along to you.
And then a weekly video series, short sweet with actionable tips for all those do it yourselfers out there. Totally appreciate that. So that's another way to support you as you continue innovating.
And if you're ready to dive in, I love going into businesses and doing this exercise with you along with a number of other exercises, looking at the foundation of your business, what's working, what isn't, where do you want to be in the next few years. And then we've got to tackle technology.
It's always a big one. And then where it makes sense looking at more future proof fee and service models, segmenting clients, getting really clear on what your service models are, so that you don't end up with unprofitable clients. They understand if they move to a different service level, that they're going to pay more. Getting clarity around that for you and your clients.
And then looking at where is the future of your business? How are you attracting and retaining the next generation of clients and advisors? How are you bringing diversity to make sure that you're representing and supporting the general population?
So when you're ready to do that, go ahead and click that button below. There's a link to schedule a call. Let's hop on, it's always great to connect with people directly.
I look forward to continuing to support you through the podcast, through the video series, and hopefully for some of you working with you directly.
I hope this was helpful. I wish you all the best on your innovation journey!