In this article, Blain Wease, President of Provincial Development Group, and Mac Bartine, CEO of SmartRIA, explore the 5 dimensions of growth and how a culture of compliance can help to support and organize execution of those dimensions. We’ll be exploring these in depth in our upcoming webinar.
Growing Your Firm in Any Season
The skill sets required to grow any business share dimensions from both art and science, and wealth management firms are no exception. We typically find one of two incorrect perceptions about the process of enabling growth. Perception one is to oversimplify the process. Perception two is an opposite response, to over complicate it and focus on too many things at once. If walking the delicate line between the art and science of growth were an easy balance to strike, most firms would be wildly successful with marginal effort.
There are many capable thought leaders about creating growth in the wealth management industry, but one thing is certain: if your primary motivation is not centered in helping your clients, it’s time to rethink your approach from the ground up.
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Breaking down the five dimensions of growth:
Following is a brief introduction into each of the five key components of growth, along with ways an integrated technology stack that includes a robust compliance platform like SmartRIA can make achieving your growth goals more achievable.
Dimension 1: Mastering the Fundamentals
Mastering the Fundamentals is the proactive heavy lifting to put processes in place, which enable your firm to consistently deliver on your value promises (what you actually tell prospective clients they can expect from you.) An example of this could be, what the first year looks like for a new client with $5M in AUM. Your fundamentals in this context takes into consideration the what, the how and the why (but not necessarily in that order) of what it’s like to be your client (services & experience).
Compliance Tip: If you want to ensure your team is living up to your firm’s value promises to your clients, consider building questions concerning your values into your annual reviews in SmartRIA: “How did you demonstrate Value XYZ during this meeting?”. This helps to demonstrate and reinforce your commitment to those values in your client meetings.
Dimension 2: Mindset
Mindset represents the way in which you think: the pathways of belief that have created grooves in your thought processes. These pathways have much greater influence on your behavior in and out of the office than is often recognized. A compelling example is the Abundance Mindset vs. the Scarcity Mindset, and the myriad of ways this influences how you interact with a prospective client, subconsciously, from your choice of words, to your body language, to your ability to ask illuminating questions, etc.
Compliance Tip: here’s where your culture of compliance comes in. If you find yourself thinking of compliance as a burden to you and your firm, consider the ways in which building a culture of compliance and sharing your dedication to compliance and the security of your clients can build trust with them, and fit it into your core values.
Dimension 3: Strategy
A well thought through strategy is key to helping you to determine who you should target, where you should interact with them and what you’re going to say if you have an opportunity to engage. Provincial Development Group’s approach to strategy is holistic, compressive, integrated, and is one the most powerful levers to create differentiation for your firm.
Dimension 4: Activity
Once you have the fundamentals in place, you’re operating from a healthy mindset and you have developed an effective and actionable strategy, you’re ready to deploy action. Provincial Development Group defines how to invest your energy and hours into opportunities that produce ROI, in the same way you think about portfolio management. If the plan is not actionable, the plan is not a plan, it’s a wish.
Compliance Tip: When you start taking action, build your firm’s value promises into your marketing review form in SmartRIA. Does the marketing piece pass the “celery test” of your firm’s values? Build in questions that remind both those who are submitting and those who are reviewing your advertisements that consistency with your values is as important as compliance with the law.
Dimension 5: Resources
Sometimes advisors get trapped into what we refer to as the “silver bullet” viewpoint towards their marketing resources. These resources should serve as an attractive ambassador for your brand, message, offerings and process, but they can never replace all the other components that factor into sustainable growth.
SmartRIA’s partnership with Provincial Development Group is about helping our mutual customers to create a growth mindset while maintaining a culture of compliance that builds trust with clients and supports key business growth activities. If you’re interested in learning more, join Provincial Development Group and SmartRIA for our upcoming webinar that dives deeper into each of these topics, and see some implementations of these ideas in SmartRIA to help you keep growing your firm, in any season.
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