Someone on the streetcar just came up to you to comment on your haircut, and inquire on where you go to get it done. While smiling awkwardly, pleased with the attention but trying not to attract to much, you mentally make note to be a regular at that salon for the foreseeable future.
You take your car to mechanic before taking your 15-year old crapshoot to get an emissions and safety test, and the guys say they can flick some switch and give you some advice, without charging you anything, and tell you exactly how to pass the test. They become your regular oil changers.
The same goes to your local bike shop, butcher or bookshop. We are touched when people in the service industry go above and beyond, realizing that a little care and effort into the ‘work they do’ and not the ‘sale they have to make’ is far more valuable than any other transaction they do in a day.
Far too often we come home from deciding to join a new gym, only to be completely turned off by the degrading treatment we receive from the personal trainers, while you realize they will never let you be happy with your workout unless you are paying $75 a workout with them. Further, far too many individually also report similar behaviour with their advisors, and don’t know what a good advisor looks like, as any experience has just been a sales attempt where an advisor has tried to sell them an insurance policy they really don’t understand. With the problem of debt and financial ignorance growing problems, there needs to be a focus on client-focused advisors as well as the traditional sales-based advisors. Here are some tips on where and what to look for in a great financial advisor:
1. Accessibility: The most important. As you start to save more and more money, you realize the ability to reach your advisor is important. Whether you call, e-mail, text, or visit, depending on your relationship, is is very important to get an advisor that will pick up your calls. Nothing irritates a client more than a advisor mentioning he was too busy for a 30-second phone conversation for 2 days straight. Thus is your job, if you can handle clients calling you, find a new calling.
2. Enthusiasm: You want someone that really likes their job. This will ensure they are always researching new products, strategies, articles or apps and sharing them with clients, and will let you know you always have an advisor that wants to make personal finances easier for you, and that your money is invested in the best place for you, not just the only product your advisor learnt all the required forms for.
3. Ethical: You want someone that you can trust. The business of advising is a very personable and socialable one, and you need to be comfortable with them, so they can do their job properly with all the required information, and you can be comfortable with them working with you.
4. Client-focused: If they ask you the amount of investable assets you have before they ask you what you hope to accomplish or what your issues are, this means they might not actually be willing to work you, but just process the transaction of setting up an account for you. You want someone that walks you through th process, and tries to offer solutions that include products, not just products themselves.
I hope this helps!