10 Things Clients Want from Their Advisors

One of the things I’ve observed over the years is that good service does not sell. Great service sells.

Watch this video or read the transcript below to learn how to make your service great.

One of the firms I really admire has done something that is so good that when you put together your service proposal, you have to refer to it.

The firm is Cadaret Grant. The late Mac Cadaret was a wonderful guy, Art Grant is a friend. The men and women that work there have built a tremendous organization. They took the time and the presence of mind to ask clients what top ten things they wanted from their advisors. I thought you’d like the answer.

These are the ten things that clients say they want from their advisors.

1. First thing clients want is honesty.

They want the advisor to demonstrate honesty. Tell the truth regardless of how it helps or hurts. That’s pretty common sense. Learn to say – I don’t know.

2. The second thing they want is to have confidence in their advisor.

They want the advisor to be professional at all times. You can display your knowledge and experience without being technical or complicated.

3. They want the advisor to respond quickly.

Clients told Cadaret Grant – “Nothing is more frustrating or insulting than chasing an advisor or waiting for a call back.” Get on the phone!

4. Choices – clients don’t want choices to be made by the client alone.

They want to rely on the advisor’s knowledge of this broad range of solutions.

5. Clients want independence in their advisor.

They want to know the advisor is free of pressure to provide an employer’s products – that they’re being totally unbiased.

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6. Clients want no conflicts of interest.

You know, if clients don’t want the same advisor as the one used by a former spouse that just makes a lot of common sense.

7. To know that one’s needs are always on the advisor’s mind.

Any advisor who has too broad a range of interests may not have enough time to think about the client’s interest. Perceptions matter, in fact perception is greater than reality.

8. Modesty.

Another thing clients want in their advisors is modesty. A successful advisor has desirable behavior.  Egotistical, arrogant and ostentatious behavior is abhorrent.

9. They want their advisor to be stable and reliable.

It is better not to move your office every two years, replace your assistant frequently or change your method of doing business too often. What happens if something happens to you? If you’re always changing things, then who backs you up when you have the flu?

10. Be consistent. Clients want transparency in their advisor.

Explain how you’re compensated and don’t change that. Clients become suspicious to change. Change means greater cost to them. Changing the fee you charge should be a one-time only event. Be transparent. I don’t think clients mind commissions and fees, they just don’t like the mystery surrounding them.

So those ten things mean so much. Build those into your model. You’ll benefit if you do. Believe me.

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